Are We Moving Toward A Buyer’s Market? Maybe

By CHUCK GREEN As the average mortgage rates decline and markets slow in parts of the country that were red-hot during the pandemic, we at The Mortgage Note decided to ask who is currently in favor during negotiations – the buyer or the seller? It seems that the current consensus on the ground is that there are benefits to being either. Aaron Kozikowski is a loan officer at Ross Mortgage Corporation. The company is headquartered in Troy, Michigan, and serves customers in Michigan, Kentucky, Florida, and Virginia. Kozikowski said “in this market, we’ve been seeing homes sit on the market longer, which allows buyers to take their time instead of having to put in an offer immediately. Sellers are also…

Monthly Mortgage Costs Fell In November, But Are Still Up 66% YOY

Homebuyers are finally starting to see some moderation in prices as the market corrects.  The cost of a new mortgage fell 4.8% in November as mortgage rates plunged, according to Zillow’s latest Market Report. This is only the second time mortgage costs have declined in the past 19 months. Falling home values and shrinking mortgage rates forced prices to cool. Rates dropped 57 basis points in November alone.  The typical U.S. home saw its value shrink 0.2% from October to November, and is down 0.5% from a peak in June. Renters also reaped the benefits of declining values, with rents seeing their largest single-month drop in the seven-year history of Zillow’s data. Affordability remains a challenge. Monthly mortgage costs are…

Rates Dip Again

Mortgage interest rates dipped modestly again last week, the fifth consecutive week of decline, Freddie Mac reported Thursday. Freddie’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey found that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 6.31%, down from 6.33% the week prior. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.12 percent. The 15-year fixed-rate mortgage fell from 5.67% to 5.54%. A year ago, it averaged 2.34%. “Mortgage rates continued their downward trajectory this week, as softer inflation data and a modest shift in the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy reverberated through the economy,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist. “The good news for the housing market is that recent declines in rates have led to a stabilization in purchase demand. The bad…

Hitting The Market During The Holidays? What Sellers And Buyers Need To Know

By KIMBERLEY HAAS The housing market traditionally cools during the holiday season as people focus on family and friends but industry leaders say it is a good time for potential sellers and buyers to weigh their options. After mortgage rates recently surged above 7%, real estate activity and consumer sentiment took a nosedive. Home delistings hit a record high in November as sellers and buyers pulled out of the market, according to journalists Lily Katz and Ben Walzer at Redfin. Markets where home prices skyrocketed during the pandemic are now cooling the fastest. In Sacramento, Calif., an average of 3.6% of active listings were delisted per week during the 12 weeks ending on November 27, up 1.6 percentage points from one year earlier.…

Pylon Raises $8.5M For Embedded Mortgage Infrastructure Platform

Mortgage-as-a-service provider Pylon has raised $8.5 million in seed funding for the development of its embedded mortgage infrastructure platform, the company announced in a press release. Funding is led by Conversion Capital with participation from Fifth Wall, Peter Thiel, and QED Investors, among others. Zillow, Blend, Ramp, SoFi, and Figure offered additional funds as angel investors. “Mortgages are rapidly becoming commoditized across rates, loan products, and operations as indicated by the nearly identical rates amongst the top 10 lenders,” said Pylon co-founder Trent Hedge. “We are long overdue for the infrastructure layer that standardizes these commodities through software – allowing our customers to focus on building highly differentiated, revenue-generating mortgage offerings at a fraction of the time and cost.” Pylon…

Pending Home Sales Fall For Fifth Straight Month

Pending home sales fell for the fifth consecutive month in October, with three of the four regions seeing month-over-month declines, according to the National Association of Realtors. The Pending Home Sales Index dropped by 4.6% between September and October. Year-over-year it tanked by 37%. All four regions saw pending sales drop year-over-year. The Midwest, however, experienced a small uptick month-over-month, up by 3.3%. The Northeast PHSI fell by 4.3% from September, while the South fell 6.4% and the West saw a major decline of 11.3%. “October was a difficult month for home buyers as they faced 20-year-high mortgage rates. The West region, in particular, suffered from the combination of high interest rates and expensive home prices. Only the Midwest squeaked out…

Leaders: There Are Still Potential Buyers Despite The Odds

By CHUCK GREEN Despite a plethora of obstacles, there are prospective buyers chomping at the bit to purchase a home, according to experts. On Wednesday, Zillow Home Loans Senior Economist Matthew Speakman released a statement on mortgage rates dropping after a report on inflation showed that price pressures may finally be easing. “The arrival of weaker-than-expected October Consumer Price Index data was just the sign investors had been waiting for, and markets viewed it as a signal that the Federal Reserve may finally take its foot off the brakes as it determines the path forward for monetary policy,” Speakman said. “Bond yields tumbled as a result and mortgage rates – which had spent the last few weeks oscillating at or…

Loan Volume Stayed Steady Last Week, But Bad Times Lay Ahead

Mortgage loan application volume dipped just slightly last week, continuing a weeks-long trend of relative calm, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s weekly survey. The adjusted Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, dropped by 0.1%. Mortgage rates jumped back up to 7.14% after cooling slightly. The adjusted purchase index rose 1%, while the unadjusted purchase index decreased by 1% and was 41% lower YOY.  “Mortgage rates edged higher last week following news that the Federal Reserve will continue raising short-term rates to combat high inflation. The 30-year fixed rate remained above 7% for the third consecutive week, and there were increases for most other loan types,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s Vice President and Deputy Chief Economist. …

Rates Dip Under 7%, But “Serene Stretch” Likely To End In Coming Days

Mortgage interest rates softened last week after shooting above 7%, falling back to 6.95%, Freddie Mac reported Thursday. Freddie’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey found that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 6.95%, down from 7.08% the week prior. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 3.09%. “Mortgage rates continue to hover around 7%, as the dynamics of a once-hot housing market have faded considerably,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist.  “Unsure buyers navigating an unpredictable landscape keep demand declining while other potential buyers remain sidelined from an affordability standpoint. Yesterday’s interest rate hike by the Federal Reserve will certainly inject additional lead into the heels of the housing market.” The Federal Reserve approved another 75 BPS interest…

Homes Are Sitting On The Market Longer

Homes are staying on the market longer but are still selling faster than they did in the fall of 2019, according to a new analysis from Zillow. The typical home that switched to “pending sale” in September did so after 19 days, up from the pandemic’s record lows, but 10 days faster than in September 2019. Homes are also staying on the market with a median of 54 days in October, up 45% YOY. “Buyers are still out there and willing to buy when they find the right home at the right price, which will provide a floor for the price declines we are currently seeing. But sellers need to do things right to attract the attention of these buyers…