Guardian Residential Lending Industry News, September 26 – October 3, 2019

Guardian Residential Lending Industry News, September 19-26, 2019
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October 10, 2019
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In the Know: A Roundup of This Week’s Local and National Real Estate Stories 

Forecast hints at a strong housing market this fall…

 

Freddie Mac: September forecast hints at a strong housing market this fall (HW, Sept. 30)

Low mortgage rates are predicted to accelerate home sales growth

Although the nation’s trade war is projected to weaken future economic growth, Freddie Mac’s September Forecast indicates the housing market is likely to maintain its strength well into the fall.

“Despite fears of an economic slowdown, the housing market continues to be a bright spot in the economy,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist. “While mortgage rates have ticked up in recent weeks, they remain lower than they were a year ago which will help boost sales headed into the fall.”

According to the government-sponsored enterprise, U.S. GDP will average 2.2% in 2019, edging down to 1.8% come 2020.

The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, which dropped to a 3-year low in August, will remain below 4% for the remainder of 2019.

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Jobs report: Nearly all U.S. states saw gains in August (HW, Oct. 3)

All U.S. states except Vermont had job gains in August, led by 3% increases in Nevada and Utah, according to the National Association of Realtors.

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CoreLogic says U.S. home-price gains will accelerate through 2020 (HW, Oct. 2)

Mortgage rates likely will stay below 4% through 2020, Frank Nothaft says

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The country’s priciest neighborhoods are taking it on the chin (PBJ, Oct. 2)

The U.S. housing market rebounded in August with a surge in existing home sales and building permits to add new inventory. Too bad the acceleration stopped just short of America’s wealthiest neighborhoods.

That includes Oregon, Hawaii, Washington and California’s uppermost-crust locale, which appears in the state-by-state slideshow

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NAR: Americans want to buy more homes, but will economic uncertainty prevent them? (HW, Sept. 30)

63% of survey respondents say now is a good time to buy a home

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Mortgage rates much lower after manufacturing report (Mortgage News Daily, Oct. 1)

What does a manufacturing report have to do with mortgage rates?  As today shows us, quite a lot!  The bond market that underlies interest rates has always been in the business of reacting to economic data.  Some reports and some periods of time are more important than others.  Data is currently a bit more important than it has been and manufacturing data has more of the spotlight than normal due to the trade war’s impact.

The underlying bond market actually began the day suggesting HIGHER rates, and indeed, many lenders offered slightly higher rates at first.   After the data, however, bonds surged back into stronger territory and almost every lender ended up offering improved terms a few hours later.  The average lender ultimately offered the lowest rates since September 9th.

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Real estate is still the best investment you can make today, millionaires say—here’s why (CNBC, Oct. 1)

Billionaire Andrew Carnegie famously said that 90% of millionaires got their wealth by investing in real estate. We wanted to know: Is this still true? Is investing in real estate still a good idea?

According to these nine Advisors in The Oracles, who made millions by investing in real estate, the answer is a resounding yes.

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Redfin: The average 2012 homebuyer is now sitting on $141,000 in home equity (HW, Oct. 1)

Those who purchased a home following the Great Recession have seen their home equity climb by 261%

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Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac can keep their profits for the first time since the 2008 bailout (Curbed, Oct. 1)

The Trump administration announced today that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the two government-sponsored mortgage facilitators, can keep their own profits for the first time since getting bailed out by the federal government during the financial crisis in 2008.

Until now, Fannie and Freddie funneled the vast majority of their profits to the Treasury Department as a way of paying back the $191 billion bailout that kept the two companies afloat and put them under government control. They have since paid back the bailout money and contributed an additional $115 billion to Treasury’s coffers.

This move is significant because it’s the first big step toward releasing the two companies from government control and putting them back in private hands. During the height of the housing bubble in 2006, Fannie and Freddie issued less than half of all mortgage bonds; investment banks and other financial institutions accounted for the rest.

Today, Fannie and Freddie issue 95 percent of all mortgage bonds. Keeping their own profits will allow the companies to build up enough capital to cover any potential losses they incur, instead of leaving the government on the hook.

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Which week is the “Black Friday of homebuying”? (HW, Sept. 26)

Apparently, the best time to purchase a house is the first week of Fall. 

This time of year, buyers have less competition, more price reductions and greater inventory, according to realtor.com. 

Out of the 53 major markets in the U.S., 41 reported that the week of Sept. 22 through 28 is the best time to purchase a home. 

During this time, homebuyers would see 26% less competition and 6.1% more homes on the market. About 6% of homes on the market would go through price reductions and become 2.4% cheaper. This is what leads that week to carry the nickname: “Black Friday of homebuying.”

“As summer winds down and kids return to school, many families hit pause on their home search and wait until the next season to start again. With dramatically less competition, persistent buyers will feel the scales tip in their favor as eager sellers begin to cut their prices in an effort to entice a sale,” said George Ratiu, senior economist of realtor.com. 

The market where this is more likely to happen in the West, where buyers will see about 30% less competition than the average week. Listing prices will go down 4%, and 9% of homes have reduced prices. In addition, there are 22% more active listings and will remain on the market 38% longer than its peak week. 

Specifically, Seattle sees a 41.3% drop in competition; Portland, Oregon sees 35.5% less

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Appraisals will no longer be required on certain home sales of $400,000 and under (HW, Sept. 26)

Federal Reserve signs off on appraisal rule change, making change official

The appraisal threshold was last increased in 1994 when regulators approved an increase from $100,000 to $250,000.

And now, in a matter of days, the appraisal threshold will be increased from $250,000 to $400,000.

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Just for Fun

How cycling advocate Yashar Vasef gets around Portland (Curbed, Sept. 26)

Using a $99 pass, he can access the city’s streetcar, light rail, buses, bike share—and even car share

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Thanks for reading!