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National Mortgage News

 

Continued Deterioration in Origination Quality

 

As home lenders and investors have recently been a little more relaxed about credit qualifications compared to just after the crisis, mortgage quality has weakened. Still, quality is better than before the crisis.

During the past three years, the quality of residential loans originated has weakened, though credit quality remains far stronger than the early 2000s and the late 1990s.

Components of borrower character like credit scores are the strongest feature of current mortgage originations, and they have weakened little over the past few years.


Best Mortgage Lenders By Category

 

A report based on a recent survey of consumers who were shopping for a residential loan has identified the best home lenders in a variety of categories -- including government programs, jumbo loans and online services.

The 10-question survey of prospective mortgage borrowers found that before they applied for a home loan, 40 percent checked their credit report or credit score.

Saving for a down payment was cited by 36 percent. More than a quarter reported that they paid down debt, while nearly a quarter indicated they reduced spending.


Business Falls to 6-Month Low at Freddie

 

New business at the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp. retreated to its lowest level in six months. Delinquency, meanwhile, remained at its lowest level in a decade.

When September was over, Freddie Mac's total mortgage portfolio stood at $2.1513 trillion -- including a $0.2278 trillion in mortgage investments and $1.9235 trillion in outstanding mortgage-related securities and other guarantees.

The McLean, Virginia-based company revealed the metrics in its Monthly Volume Summary, which indicated that the book of business had expanded from $2.1472 trillion a month earlier and $2.0568 trillion a year earlier.


Large Agency MSR Offering Hits Market

 

Bids are being sought for servicing rights on a large portfolio of agency mortgages. The offering has a moderate concentration of Golden State and Sunshine State loans.

Mortgage servicing rights on 20,168 residential loans that had a collective unpaid principal balance of $5.232 billion as of Sept. 30 are being sold through the auction process.

Included in the offering are MSRs on $2.005 billion in Fannie Mae loans, $0.310 billion in Freddie Mac mortgages, and $2.917 billion in Ginnie Mae l loans.


Mortgage Rates Up 92 BPS From Year Ago

 

Over the past year, weekly fixed interest rates on single-family loans have soared 92 basis points. But little change was reported from last week, and more of the same is expected.

On conventional loans utilized to finance a home purchase with amounts up to the conforming mortgage limit of $453,100, thirty-year fixed rates averaged 4.77 percent during September.

Compared to the previous month, conforming interest rates slipped a single basis point. Mortgage rates have soared, however, 63 BPS from September 2017.


 

New York claims real estate brokers made $21 million through illegal Airbnb rentals

 

A group of New York City real estate brokers made $21 million through a series of illegal Airbnb short-term rentals in flagrant violation of the city’s short-term rental laws, the city claims in a new lawsuit. According to the city, Metropolitan Property Group, its owners, and others were repeatedly warned to stop violating the city’s short-term rental laws, but chose to continue to do so, earning more than $21 million in illegal revenue from Airbnb.

These are the nation's most competitive housing markets

 

Although the housing market is expected to experience a slowdown in 2019, some metropolitan areas are thriving. Because of this, LendingTree has ranked the 50 largest metros. Read to find out which cities are ahead of the pack.

Knock raises $400 million, plans massive expansion of home trade-in program

 

Around this time last year, Knock, a real estate startup that buys homes directly from homeowners, unveiled an expansion plan that would see the company grow its business beyond its first market of Atlanta. Since then, the company has indeed expanded and is now operating in five markets, but the company has much bigger plans than that. And now, the company has the money to reach those goals.

Blackstone set to launch largest real estate fund ever

 

Blackstone Group is set to finish raising capital for the largest-ever real estate fund. According to The Wall Street Journal, the $20 billion fund is expected to close in the first quarter of 2019 for most investors and may focus on tech hubs, remote resorts, rental properties and distribution centers.

Trulia welcomes new chief economist

 

Real estate and rental listing website Trulia recently announced Issi Romem joined the company as its new chief economist. Trulia's Senior Vice President and General Manager Tim Correia said Romem brings a fresh but experienced perspective on the U.S. economy, urban development and housing policy to Trulia’s Housing Economics Research team.

These are the best housing markets to pay off debt

 

In 2018, American consumer debt reached a whopping $4 trillion, contributing to tightening affordability concerns in the housing sector. LendingTree recently released a report that highlighted the best U.S. metros for paying off debt. Find out which cities made the cut.

MRI Software acquires Rental History Reports and Trusted Employees

 

Real estate software provider MRI Software is expanding its business by acquiring Rental History Reports and Trusted Employees, a provider of applicant screening platforms that focuses on the multifamily real estate industry and corporate employers, the company announced recently.

NAR: American dream of homeownership is still alive

 

Although affordability continues to be a deterrence to homeownership, data suggests Americans still strongly consider it to be a part of the American dream, according to the National Association of Realtors.

It's official: Former HUD Secretary Julián Castro announces presidential bid

 

In a not-so-surprising announcement Saturday, former secretary of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Julián Castro announced he is adding his name to what could be a long list of Democrats running for president in 2020.

Jason Shapiro joins LOGS Network as chief revenue officer

 

LOGS Network, a legal service provider for the residential mortgage and consumer credit industry, recently announced it appointed Jason Shapiro to the position of chief revenue officer. Shapiro will be responsible for managing the national sales, marketing and business development efforts for the company’s law firms, title companies and affiliated entities.

Commercial real estate appraisal tech startup Bowery Valuation raises $12 million

 

Bowery Valuation, which claims that it’s the “world’s first tech-driven commercial appraisal firm,” announced this week that it raised $12 million in its Series A funding round to continue developing its technology and power its growth.

Nation's largest single-family rental owners offer rent relief to unpaid federal workers

 

American Homes 4 Rent, FirstKey Homes, Front Yard Residential, Invitation Homes, Progress Residential, and Tricon American Homes are offering the option of deferring their rent payment with no late fees to any of their residents who are among the approximately 800,000 federal workers who are either furloughed or working without pay because of the federal government shutdown.

The housing market's future is female

 

The housing market is projected to heat up in 2019 and new data from Realtor.com indicates this push will predominantly be driven by Millennial women. According to the company’s latest study, 50% of the top 20 fastest growing buyer first names belong to Millennial women.

Democrats move to prevent foreclosures, evictions on unpaid federal workers

 

There are approximately 800,000 federal workers who are either furloughed or working without pay thanks to the government shutdown. The FHA has already asked the mortgage industry to help those workers with their mortgages, but a group of nearly two dozen congressional Democrats want more protection than that.

Mortgage Tech Rundown: Informative Research, Guild Mortgage, and more

 

This week's Mortgage Tech Rundown features the latest mortgage and real estate technology news from Informative Research, Maxwell, and Guild Mortgage.

Gary Keller returns as CEO to lead Keller Williams

 

In a note to employees this week, Keller Williams Co-founder Gary Keller announced he will be coming back to the company to serve as CEO. Keller announced that as the company continues its technology transformation, he is stepping back into the role to lead the real estate industry "into the future." 

Trulia: Homebuyer pessimism grows among young adults

 

Trulia's end-of-year survey shows that the idea of homeownership is part of the American dream is shrinking most among younger adults and the group's pessimism about home buying is increasing.

Home prices are rising faster than wages in 80% of U.S. markets

 

Climbing home prices and less than significant increases in wage growth have contributed to renting becoming a more affordable option for Americans, according to ATTOM Data Solutions' latest Rental Affordability Report. In fact, ATTOM points out that home prices are rising faster than wages in 80% of U.S. markets.

Home price growth slows in most states

 

Home prices have appreciated consistently since the housing market began its recovery, but now they appear to be slowing down after a six-year run. The latest data from Black Knight reveals while the slowdown is apparent across much of the nation, the west saw the most deceleration, with California falling below the national average for the first time since 2012.

NRP Group rolling out multifamily property management services

 

The NRP Group, a developer, builder, and manager of multifamily housing, is set to begin offering its property management services to third parties. NRP Group announced this week that it is rolling out NRP Management, which will allow other multifamily developers and property managers to use NRP Group’s property management services.

Renters Warehouse acquires single-family rental investment platform OwnAmerica

 

Renters Warehouse, a property management company that specializes in managing single-family rentals, can now also offer investors a platform for buying and selling single-family rentals after the company completed its acquisition of OwnAmerica.

LendingTree: This is what's in store for the housing market in 2019

 

Although several housing market experts anticipate the market slowing down in 2019, LendingTree believes that there is no cause for alarm. In its 2019 forecast, LendingTree predicts slower sales will give rise to an increase of inventory, which could benefit lenders and homeowners.

Flat fee real estate company Home Bay set to expand with $13.5 million capital raise

 

The last few years have been a period of growth for Home Bay, a flat fee real estate company, and thanks to a new injection of funding, the growth won’t be stopping any time soon. According to the company, it plans to use the funding to expand into more states and improve its technology platform.

ATTOM Data Solutions acquired by private equity firm Lovell Minnick Partners

 

ATTOM Data Solutions, the real estate data provider formerly known as RealtyTrac, is now under new ownership. The company announced Tuesday morning that it’s been acquired by Lovell Minnick Partners, a private equity firm, for an undisclosed amount. Previously, ATTOM was owned by Renovo Capital and Rosewood Private Investments.

Nick Bailey steps down as Century 21 CEO and president

 

Century 21 Real Estate announced Monday that President and CEO Nick Bailey is stepping down, effective January 11. The real estate company's current chief growth officer, Michael Miedler, will take the reins as its new president and CEO. Bailey will remain an adviser until March 1 to ensure a smooth transition.

 

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