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Here is what was at the top of the headlines for the mortgage industry this past week. 

It Could Soon Be Easier to Get a Mortgage. Melvin Watt, director of the Federal Housing Finance Authority, which regulates the two government enterprises, said his group was working with Fannie and Freddie to develop “sensible and responsible guidelines” for the 3% loans, in an effort “to increase access for creditworthy but lower-wealth borrowers.” He cited “compensating factors” in evaluating such borrowers, though he didn’t say what those factors would be.

Mortgage Rates Continue to Fall. Mortgage company Freddie Mac said Thursday that the nationwide average for a 30-year loan declined to 3.92% from 3.97% last week — the lowest level since June 2013. It stood at 4.53% back in January. The average for a 15-year mortgage, a popular choice for people who are refinancing, fell to 3.08% from 3.18%. It was the fifth straight week that mortgage rates retreated.

MBA Sees Originations Increasing Seven Percent in 2015. “We are projecting that home purchase originations will increase in 2015 as the US economy continues on its current path of stronger growth, job gains and declining unemployment. The job market has shown sustained improvement this year; with robust monthly increases in both payroll jobs and job openings,” said Michael Fratantoni, MBA’s Chief Economist and Senior Vice President for Research and Industry Technology.

 

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