Applications Hit Lowest Level Since 2000

Mortgage loan application volume fell 2.3% last week, reversing a two-week uptick, the Mortgage Bankers Association’s weekly survey shows. Overall applications dipped to their lowest level since 2000. The adjusted Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased by 2.3%. The adjusted purchase index fell 1% while the unadjusted purchase index dropped 2% and was 18% lower YOY. The refinance index dropped by 5% and made up 31.2% of total applications, down 82% from the same time last year.  Refinances are at their lowest level since November 2000, pushed down by a 6% decline in conventional refinance applications. ARM activity fell to 7% of total applications. “Home purchase applications continued to be held down by rapidly drying…

Morning Roundup (8/16/2022) – Housing Starts Drop Sharply

Good Morning! Today is Tuesday, August 16. The Justice Department objected to the news media’s request to make public the affidavit for the Mar-a-Lago search warrant because they said releasing it could deter witnesses. Scotland is the first country to make period products free. Oil prices hit their lowest level in months. The Mortgage Note Reports Popular Portsmouth: This quaint city which attracts tourists from all over the world is growing as people escape the rat race of Boston and New York City. Writer Chuck Green explains. Housing Starts Plummet: Homebuilding dropped sharply below expected levels in July as both buyers and sellers continue to lose confidence in the market. Competition Heats Up: In a reversal of a pandemic trend, competition for low-priced homes has surpassed that for mid-…

What’s The Buzz About Portsmouth, New Hampshire?

By CHUCK GREEN Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Is it the place to be? Why not? Portsmouth’s a medium size coastal city with 22,277 residents as of July 1, 2021, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. The city’s rife with attractions including a new jazz club, theaters, restaurants, overall safety, outdoor living, and the school district has 6 schools with 2,531 students. Here’s the scene from Jimmy’s Jazz & Blues Club on New Year’s Eve: Happy New Year’s Eve from Portsmouth, NH! pic.twitter.com/5wwd4JU4sJ— Kimberley Haas (@KimberleyHaas) January 1, 2022 The Seacoast region has and will continue to benefit from market demand that is generated by people looking for a higher quality of life within an urban setting, Jim Goldenberg, principal of Cathartes,…

Competition For Low-Priced Homes Heats Up

In a reversal of a pandemic trend, competition for low-priced homes has surpassed that for mid- and high-priced homes, according to a new Zillow analysis. July saw inventory rise 11% month-over-month and  19.3% YOY in the most expensive third of the housing market, while the middle third also saw a 12.7% MOM and 17.3% YOY increase. Inventory grew by only 11.2% MOM and 10.4% YOY in the lowest-priced tier. A year ago, the inventory of the lowest-priced homes was growing twice as fast as expensive homes, and the upper tiers saw the strongest competition, the reverse of this month’s trend. “Buyers are stretched thin when it comes to affordability, and they are flocking to the lowest-priced homes on the market…

Housing Starts Plummeted In July

Homebuilding plummeted in July as both homebuyers and sellers continue to lose confidence in the market. Housing starts fell by a shocking 9.6% to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.446 million units last month, according to new data released by the Commerce Department.  This is their lowest rate since February 2021 and significantly below market expectations of 1.53 million. Last month’s revised data put starts at a rate of 1.599 million units. A drop this big suggests the housing market still has room to contract in the third quarter of this year. Ian Shepherdson of Pantheon Macroeconomics called the data “terrible” in a tweet Tuesday. Single-family starts fell 10.1%, their lowest in two years, while starts for units in…

Morning Roundup (8/15/2022) – Listings Fall, Fairway Hires

Good Morning! Today is Monday, August 15. Ukraine accused Russia of using the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant to blackmail Kyiv and its allies. Five members of Congress arrived in Taiwan, less than two weeks after a visit by Speaker Nancy Pelosi prompted Chinese military drills. Actress Anne Heche died at 53 after a car crash. The Mortgage Note Reports Listings Fall: New listings fell 12% during the four-week period ending August 7 as “rate lock-in” and falling demand pushed some sellers to the sidelines. Fairway Hires: Scott Bristol, Brian Chick, and John Lowe have joined Fairway Independent Mortgage as part of an “aggressive expansion” of its production group. And in other mortgage and housing news… Wells Fargo Cutting Mortgage Ties: Wells Fargo, which once accounted for one of every…

“Rate Lock-In,” Falling Prices Push Sellers To Sidelines

New listings fell 12% during the four-week period ending August 7, the largest YOY decline since June 2020, according to recent Redfin data. Higher mortgage rates are keeping some Americans in their homes longer than they normally would be. Some homeowners are experiencing what Redfin calls “rate lock-in,” a fear of putting their home up for sale due to a low rate they nabbed during the pandemic. Others are realizing they won’t get an offer over listing price on-demand like they could last year. “Buyers are backing off due to rising housing costs and sellers are holding back because they realize they won’t get the bidding war they would have gotten six months ago,” said Redfin Deputy Chief Economist Taylor…

Veteran Mortgage Execs Join Fairway

Three veteran mortgage execs are joining Fairway Independent Mortgage as part of an “aggressive expansion” of the company’s production group, Fairway announced in a press release. Scott Bristol joins as SVP, Sales and Recruiting; Brian Chick as SVP, Area Manager; and John Lowe as SVP, Division Manager. “We’re pleased to welcome Scott, Brian, and John to Fairway, as well as many others,” said Fairway CEO Steve Jacobson.  “We have increased the number of our originators by 30% over the past year.” Bristol previously served as President of PrimeLending from 2014 to 2018, and lead the company to a volume increase from $4 billion to $15 billion. He later joined Flagstar Bank as SVP of National Production, overseeing another jump in…

Mortgage Rates Remain Volatile

By ISAIAS PACHECO The Mortgage Bankers Association weekly mortgage application survey has recorded an increase of 0.2% for the week of August 5. On an unadjusted basis, the index decreased 0.3% compared with the previous week. Joel Kan, MBA’s Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting said mortgage rates remained volatile last week – after drops in the previous two weeks. Kan said mortgage rates ended up rising four basis points and mortgage applications were relatively flat, with a decline in purchase activity offset by an increase in refinance applications. “The purchase market continues to experience a slowdown, despite the strong job market. Activity has now fallen in five of the last six weeks, as buyers remain on the…

This Summer, Is Urban Migration Such A Hot Idea?

By SCOTT KIMBLER Potential buyers are starting to wonder if moving out of urban areas continues to remain a good idea. In 2020, as housing costs were already skyrocketing, the Covid-19 pandemic hit. The combination of the two made migrating further out of large cities appealing to a lot of people, especially young people who were looking to buy a home and start a family. Fast forward to now and many of those factors have changed. As a result, some popular hotspots are starting to see a decline in frenzied buyers putting in multiple bids. Roy Black, an Economics Professor at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School, says although some areas are seeing a shift people will always be attracted to…