Mortgage Banking Profitability

Browse articles from all of our Newsletters related to Mortgage Banking Profitability.

July 25, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Servicing Profits Held Up Better in 1Q14

Mortgage lenders generally earned more on their servicing operations than on production activity during the first quarter of 2014, according to an Inside Mortgage Trends analysis of earnings reports from firms that disclose such information. The 10 companies in the sample group reported a combined $850.4 million in production-related income during the first three months of 2014, compared with $1.33 billion in servicing income ... [Includes one data chart]


July 25, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Lenders Mum on Marketing Costs

Trying to find out how much money an individual mortgage company spends each year in marketing its products to consumers is no easy task. A quick survey of some of the nation’s largest lenders on advertising dollars conducted by Inside Mortgage Trends yielded the same exact response: “We don’t disclose that information.” Many large lenders don’t even engage in specific mortgage-related advertising, at least not on a national level. The one exception is ...


July 25, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Interest Rate Hedging in Fluctuating Environment

Lenders facing rising interest rates might be overlooking valuable hedging options, according to officials at Mortgage Capital Management. The firm offers pipeline risk-management services and is touting float-down locks, or put options on interest rates, which MCM claims will increase earnings stability and grow production. A float-down lock allows a borrower to receive a lower interest rate on their mortgage if rates decline between when ...


July 25, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Low Payments Won’t Deter Potential Movers

Concerns that rising interest rates will prompt current homeowners to stay in place are overblown, according to a number of industry analysts. A panel at Zillow’s latest housing forum this week focused on the issue of borrower lock-in, with most speakers downplaying the issue. Joseph Tracy, an executive vice president and senior advisor to the president at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, said his research has found that rising interest rates ...


July 25, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Firms Offering Hefty Signing Bonuses for LOs

Not only are residential originations on the rise once again, but so are “signing bonuses” for top-flight loan officers who can bring in the volume. According to research from Garrett, McAuley & Co., signing bonuses being paid today range from $20,000 to $30,000, but “with some going much higher.” With production shifting toward purchase-money lending, LOs with deep ties to Realtors and homebuilders can fetch the most. But according to interviews ...


July 25, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Banks Report Substantial Increase In 2Q14 Mortgage Banking Income

Second-quarter bank earnings reports show a strong increase in overall mortgage banking profitability as new origination volume rebounded from historic lows set in the first three months of 2014. A new Inside Mortgage Trends review of earnings reports from 21 banks, including eight of the 10 largest banks in mortgage lending, reveals that the group generated $3.81 billion in second-quarter mortgage banking income. That was up 31.5 percent from ...


July 24, 2014 - Inside MBS & ABS

Fannie Prices Fourth, Largest Credit Risk-Share Transaction, More to Come

Fannie Mae late last week priced its third credit risk-sharing deal of 2014. The $2.05 billion note is the government-sponsored enterprise’s fourth and largest transaction under its Connecticut Avenue Securities series since the Federal Housing Finance Agency ordered both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to shrink the GSEs’ role in the U.S. housing market last year. In its latest offering – Series 2014-C03 – Fannie included reference loans with original loan-to-value ratios of up to 97 percent and “is consistent with prior transactions.” Previous C-deal offerings included reference loans with up to 80 percent LTV ratios. “We’ve continued...


July 18, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

House Democrats’ Bill Features Amped-Up GNMA

Ginnie Mae would play a greater role in a private-market partnership model envisioned in proposed housing finance reform legislation introduced recently by House Democrats. However, many in the industry doubt whether a Democrat-sponsored reform bill will pass in this Congress. Sponsored by Reps. John Delaney (MD), John Carney (DE) and Jim Himes (CT), the Partnership to Strengthen Homeownership Act would put Ginnie Mae in charge of all single- and multifamily mortgage-backed securities with government backing. Among other things, H.R. 5055 would create a new Ginnie Mae MBS for conventional mortgages backed by the full faith and credit of the federal government with minimum support from the private sector. Under the proposed model, private entities would assume up to 5 percent of the first-loss capital on the MBS. The remaining 95 percent would be shared between ...


July 18, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

Ginnie Mae Servicing Remains Flat in 2Q14

Ginnie Mae servicing remained flat in the second quarter of 2014, continuing a trend that began in the third quarter of last year as FHA refinancing fell and purchase activity slowed, according to Inside FHA Lending’s analysis of Ginnie Mae data. Servicing volume rose by only 0.7 percent from the first quarter, slightly lower from the 0.9 percent increase reported by Ginnie Mae servicers for the first three months of 2014. On the other hand, volume was up modestly by 5.9 percent year-over-year, data showed. Ginnie Mae servicers ended the second quarter with a total of $1.46 trillion in unpaid principal balance, up from $1.45 trillion in the prior quarter. Four out of the top five Ginnie Mae servicers were banks. Wells Fargo closed out the second quarter with $425.9 billion in servicing volume, a 0.2 percent decrease from the previous quarter but up 2.1 percent from a year ago. Its 29.2 percent market share put it ... [1 chart]


July 18, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

VA Clarifies Impact of Same-Sex Marriage Policy

Same-sex couples are entitled to veteran benefits, including home loan guaranty, if their marriage is recognized by the state where they live or where they lived when they filed a claim for benefits – and not where the marriage took place.The VA made the clarification in the wake of guidance the agency issued regarding the benefits and services same-sex married couples are entitled to under current laws and regulation. On June 26, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court, in United States v. Windsor, struck down Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which governs the definitions of “marriage” and “spouse” for all federal agencies, because it was unconstitutional. The court held that the provision deprives a person of the right to equal liberty, which is protected by the due process clause of the Fifth Amendment. Prior to the SCOTUS opinion, DOMA defined “marriage” as a ...


July 18, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

Infractions that Could Trigger MRB Enforcement

One deficiency commonly noted in cases heard by the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Mortgagee Review Board is failure by FHA lenders and servicers to implement and maintain a quality control (QC) plan. FHA’s focus on quality control has increased over the last couple of years as the agency strives to correct underwriting flaws that have contributed to the massive losses and severe depletion of the Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund. After years of guiding and helping clients comply and cope with FHA regulations, requirements and enforcement actions, the Collingwood Group reports that a common QC-related mistake among FHA lenders is failure to document steps taken to correct deficiencies – or to take any corrective action at all. Tied to this issue is ...


July 18, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

FHA to Lenders: Try PFS First Before DIL Option

If an FHA borrower runs out of options for loss mitigation and home retention, a lender must first consider a pre-foreclosure or short sale, with deed-in-lieu (DIL) of foreclosure as a second option, according to new FHA guidance. Mortgagee Letter 2014-5 states that the lender must first determine whether the borrower facing default or at risk of default qualifies for a pre-foreclosure sale (PFS). The FHA allows pre-foreclosure sales to be processed as either a “standard PFS” or a “streamline PFS.” The former is available only to owner-occupants while the latter is for both owner- and non-owner-occupied single-family properties. In determining standard PFS eligibility, the lender must use a “deficit income test” to determine whether the borrower is experiencing hardship and is able to sustain his or her mortgage. A DIT resulting in a negative amount would likely qualify the borrower for a ...


July 18, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

JPMorgan Chief Seeks FHA Safe Harbor for Bank

JPMorgan Chase chief executive Jaime Dimon this week warned that the investment bank may rethink its FHA business without some type of safe harbor to shield it from potential future liabilities arising from the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act and the False Claims Act. In February this year, JPMorgan agreed to pay $614 million to the federal government to settle allegations that it falsely certified poorly underwritten loans for FHA endorsement, causing massive losses to taxpayers in paid claims. Dimon lashed out at the government during a telephone briefing on the company’s second-quarter 2014 earnings report. He said JPMorgan lost a tremendous amount of money over what the government claimed was fraud but was in fact a “commercial dispute” between FHA and the bank. “We collected $600 million in insurance, the [government] disputed $200 million [alleging] it was fraud ...


July 18, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

Endorsements Up for 620-679 Credit Scores

Mortgages with 620-679 credit scores accounted for more than half of FHA’s mortgage insurance business in the first quarter of 2014, up from 42.0 percent a year ago, according to the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s latest quarterly report to Congress on the state of the FHA Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund. Data showed FHA-insured mortgages in the 620-679 credit score range, a band typically identified with borrowers with slightly tainted credit, comprised 51.1 percent of new endorsements in the first quarter. This was up from 50.1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2013. FHA endorsements in the 620-plus category started trending upward in the first quarter of 2011, while endorsements in the 720-850 credit score range began a slow decline during the same period. The distribution of borrower credit scores continued the migration seen in previous quarters, though at a ...


July 17, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Most of the Megabanks Saw Mortgage Profits Increase Firmly in 2Q; A Barometer for the Rest of the Industry?

The nation’s megabanks reported fairly strong mortgage earnings during the second quarter thanks to a jump in new originations, robust servicing revenue and expense cuts. If the results reported by Wells Fargo, JPMorgan Chase, Bank of America and Citigroup are any indication, the industry may be rebounding from a rough stretch in late 2013 and early 2014. But the first quarter of this year was so bad – and originations so weak – that lenders had no place to go but up. Larry Charbonneau, a warehouse lending analyst, said...


July 17, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Mortgage Brokers Peeved as CFPB Targets Those Acting as Mini-Correspondents for More Scrutiny

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau late last week said it will take a close look at mortgage brokers acting as mini-correspondents, particularly if they are just trying to get around disclosure requirements and limits on broker compensation. The CFPB is concerned that some mortgage brokers are claiming to be mini-correspondent lenders by establishing warehouse funding lines when they are still essentially just facilitating a transaction between a borrower and a lender. “While some brokers may be setting up such arrangements because they intend to grow into full correspondent lenders, the bureau is concerned...


July 11, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

New Jersey Lender Exits Retail Mortgage Business

Sun Bancorp, a $3.5 billion banking institution in New Jersey, is leaving the retail mortgage banking business and cutting back on direct home-equity lending due to declining profitability and tighter regulation. The moves are part of a comprehensive plan presented by Thomas O’Brien, Sun Bancorp’s new president and chief executive officer, who was brought on board as a consultant in April to restructure the company and ... [Includes one data chart]


July 11, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Rising Production May Mean More Jobs

Mortgage professionals continue to face a tough job market, but they can still find gainful employment depending on what their position is. No one is completely secure in the current economic environment, although mortgage brokers and loan officers may have the best standing. “Demand for key talent has suddenly spiked,” said Rick Glass, a principal in R.T. Glass & Associates of California, a mortgage recruiting firm. Mortgage brokerage firms added ...


July 11, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Borrowers Urged to Shop as Lenders Compete

The decline in refinance activity in the past year has prompted a closer look at differences in interest rates as lenders compete for borrowers. Lenders that don’t offer the lowest rate suggest that there’s more to the mortgage decision than just a low interest rate, particularly because rates are at historic lows. LendingTree, a firm that allows potential borrowers to compare loan offers, recently launched an ongoing study to track the difference between ...


July 11, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Walter Moves Toward ‘Capital-Light’ Model

Walter Investment Management took steps last week to transition to a business model that requires less capital by funding Walter Capital Opportunity and completing an excess servicing spread sale with WCO. WCO is a real estate investment trust that Walter formed in November to hold mortgage servicing rights. Last week, WCO acquired 70 percent of the excess servicing spread from a pool of loans serviced by Green Tree Servicing ...


July 11, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

FHFA Weighs Capital for Nonbank Servicers

By now, the word is out: the Federal Housing Finance Agency is exploring codifying capital minimums for nonbank servicers as a way to help Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac better manage counterparty risk. Industry officials tracking the topic told Inside Mortgage Trends they don’t believe the FHFA is necessarily worried about the capital positions of the big three nonbanks: Nationstar Mortgage, Ocwen Financial, and Walter Investment Management ...


July 11, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Nonbanks Gaining More GSE Market Share; Retail Channel Losing Steam

The rebound in new business at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac during the second quarter of 2014 was fueled by a hefty increase in purchase-mortgage activity, but it also featured clear shifts in the volume of loans coming from different kinds of lenders. A new Inside Mortgage Trends analysis of loan-level data on mortgage-backed securities issued by the two government-sponsored enterprises shows that nonbank lenders continued to ... [Includes 3 data charts]


July 11, 2014 - Inside MBS & ABS

‘Flood of Litigation’ Expected Against Non-Agency MBS Trustees for Failing to Pursue Buyback Claims

The six lawsuits filed in June by institutional investors against non-agency MBS trustees are just the beginning of actions against trustees, according to an attorney who has pursued representation-and-warranty claims against non-agency MBS issuers. “We are likely to see a flood of litigation against trustees alleging that the banks sat on their hands and blew the statute of limitations on valuable putback claims,” according to Isaac Gradman, an attorney at Perry Johnson Anderson Miller & Moskowitz. The June lawsuits by BlackRock, PIMCO and other institutional investors targeted...


July 10, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Lender: New GSE Mortgage Insurance ‘Stand-In’ Does Nothing to Reduce Buyback Uncertainty of Legacy Loans

Recently implemented steps by the two government-sponsored enterprises to provide an alternative to repurchase when mortgage insurance is rescinded is a pleasant salve for a minor ailment, but it does nothing to address lenders’ chronic pain of sudden and unexpected buyback demands, according to a mortgage lender. Last week, new GSE repurchase requirements took effect, including the “MI stand-in” option, which Fannie defines as “the full mortgage insurance benefit that would have been payable under the original mortgage insurance policy if the mortgage loan liquidates.” In May, both Fannie and Freddie announced...


July 10, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Although the MSR Market for ‘Legacy’ Product Remains Weak, ‘Flow’ Deals Rule the Roost

Thanks to lousy origination profits posted over the past six months, mortgage bankers increasingly are boosting earnings through servicing-released arrangements, causing a mini-boom in flow transactions. “You might say we’re back to a normal operating environment where originations are cash-flow negative,” which is forcing lenders to book profits through MSR sales, said Jeff Levine, managing director of Houlihan Lokey, an investment banking firm. But Levine is...


July 3, 2014 - Inside MBS & ABS

Freddie Announces $285 Million ACIS Deal; GSE Risk-Sharing ‘Stellar’ One Year Later

Freddie Mac announced this week it has obtained insurance to cover some $285 million of losses on a pool of home loans as part of a risk-sharing effort encouraged by the government-sponsored enterprises’ regulator. The performance of these deals has been “stellar,” according to one analyst. The policies, tied to loans the GSE bought or guaranteed in the second quarter of 2013, were obtained under Freddie’s Agency Credit Insurance Structure. First rolled out in November 2013, this week’s most recent ACIS deal – the largest to date – demonstrates...


July 3, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

Around the Industry

Senate Banking Committee Approves HUD, FHFA IG Nominees. The Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs recently approved the nomination of Julian Castro as the next secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Castro, D, is the incumbent mayor of San Antonio, TX. The panel also approved the nomination of Laura Wertheimer as inspector general of the Federal Housing Finance Agency. The Senate has yet to confirm their nominations. Meanwhile, HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan’s nomination for director of the Office of Management and Budget was approved by the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Reform on June 25. FHA Policies on Arm’s Length Transactions and Compliance with State Laws. The FHA is developing guidance to address concerns that laws in certain states may conflict with its arm’s length transaction requirements for preforeclosure/short sales. Until the guidance is issued, FHA lenders should seek guidance and assistance from the FHA National Servicing Center in matters of ...


July 3, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

FHA Requests Feedback on Handbook Sections

The FHA is seeking comment on two new sections of a proposed single-family handbook for mortgage lenders. The handbook is in development. Once completed, it will serve as the centralized source of current and future FHA policies. Agency staff is collating policies from several handbooks, rules, mortgagee letters, notices and other sources to incorporate into the handbook. The FHA is publishing two new sections, “Doing Business with FHA – FHA Lenders and Mortgagees” and “Quality Control, Oversight and Compliance,” for comment. The “Doing Business” section lays out the requirements for FHA lender approval, including eligibility requirements, application processes, operating requirements and post-approval changes. The section also contains the recertification process as well as processes for applying for ...


July 3, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

Protection Extended for Surviving HECM Spouses

The FHA has extended indefinitely the timeframe during which servicers may begin to foreclose on properties with reverse mortgages while it considers possible steps to protect non-borrowing spouses of deceased reverse-mortgage borrowers from outright eviction from their homes. The latest action stemmed from a June 10 court order, which found that current statutory protection for reverse mortgage borrowers against forced eviction and foreclosure extended to their spouses even if the latter is not a co-signer on the note. Non-borrowing spouses of deceased Home Equity Conversion Mortgage borrowers sued in federal district court in Washington, DC, last year to stop foreclosure on their homes and to challenge the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s interpretation of the regulation. Since launching the HECM program, HUD has required that a HECM be ...


July 3, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

FHA Adds Non-Borrowing Spouses to HECM PLFs

The FHA has announced new principal limit factors (PLF) for Home Equity Conversion Mortgages along with instructions to lenders to ensure that borrowers and their non-borrowing spouses understand the benefits and disadvantages of a reverse mortgage. The new PLF tables have been wholly revised and now include PLFs for use where the borrower has a non-borrowing spouse younger than age 62. In recent guidance, the FHA urged lenders to ensure that borrowers are provided with an analysis of the cost of a HECM loan and its benefits so that they can decide whether a reverse mortgage would meet their financial needs. Lenders also must advise prospective borrowers and their non-borrowing spouses to consult with a housing counselor whether PLFs below 20 percent may or may not actually improve their financial situation or meet their special needs. “Significant consideration should be given to the ...


July 3, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

FHA Lenders Raise Production Numbers in April

FHA lenders reported a significant increase in the number of FHA-insured loans originated in April, breaking a downward production spiral that began in the third quarter of last year. Whether this marks a turnaround for the market, however, is uncertain. April closed with $10.3 billion in total FHA originations, up 18.5 percent from March but down 51.7 percent from the same period a year ago. This surge in FHA financing occurred despite the rising costs of obtaining an FHA loans and access-to-credit issues, which have narrowed the gap between FHA and conventional loans with private mortgage insurance. Spring and Fall are the busiest times of year for home sales which might explain the spike, according to real estate agents. FHA fixed-rate mortgages comprised 95 percent of April’s production, with purchase loans accounting for 78 percent of loans originated during the month. FHA lending trends, however, show ... [2 charts]


July 3, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

Lenders Find Glitches in Fledgling LEAP 3.0

It has been barely a month since the FHA deployed its Lender Electronic Assessment Portal (LEAP 3.0), but lenders are already having difficulty executing some functions in the new system. Lenders are complaining about how hard it is to provide access to independent public accountants (IPA) for purposes of recertification functions, as well as difficulties in making changes to existing branches or adding new ones or changing cash flow accounts. Lenders are concerned they may be sanctioned or penalized if they make a mistake, but the FHA seems not inclined to do this because the system is new. “[We] are highly focused on correcting these issues, and hope to have these functions working properly very soon,” the agency promised in a recent note to FHA lenders. The FHA said it is also aware of the complications that some lenders have faced in submitting their annual recertification in LEAP. Many of these problems have been addressed and the deadline for submission of recertification packages has been extended as well, the agency noted.


July 3, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

Agencies Take Down Another FHA Lender

U.S. Bank became the latest casualty in the government’s offensive against lax underwriting and improper origination of FHA mortgages after the bank to pay $200 million to settle all related charges. The Minneapolis-based bank became the seventh FHA lender since 2012 that has entered into settlement agreements with the Department of Justice and the Department of Housing and Urban Development to resolve alleged violation of the False Claims Act and the Financial Institution Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act, according to Inside FHA Lending’s analysis of government data. The government lawsuits allege that the banks’ certification of loans as eligible for FHA insurance under the direct endorsement program violated the FCA. The banks’ misconduct allegedly contributed to the legacy losses that crippled the FHA Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund and placed the ...


June 27, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Bank Loan Sales Plummeted in Early 2014

Secondary market mortgage sales – the lifeblood of mortgage banking income – declined sharply during the first quarter of 2014, according to an Inside Mortgage Trends analysis of bank call reports. Commercial banks and savings institutions sold just $125.7 billion in single-family home loans through their mortgage banking operations during the first three months of this year. That was down 31.1 percent from the fourth quarter and marked the slowest ... [Includes one data chart]


June 27, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Unanticipated Events Likely to Prompt Rate Spikes

A spike in mortgage interest rates similar to what occurred in 2013 is possible, according to economists at the Federal Housing Finance Agency. The May-June 2013 spike caught many lenders off guard and put a crimp in mortgage banking profitability. The direction mortgage interest rates are likely to head is heavily tied to the anticipations of market participants, according to Saty Patrabansh, a senior economist at the FHFA, along with William Doerner and Samuel Asin ...


June 27, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Diversity, Inclusion, Good for Business, Experts Say

Diversity and inclusion are no longer just a compliance issue, a window dressing or a matter of being “politically correct” but a corporate tool for achieving profits, attracting and developing new talent, and an appropriate response to an increasingly diverse marketplace, according to experts at an industry summit held in Washington, DC, this week. The three-day summit was organized by the Mortgage Bankers Association’s diversity and inclusion committee to ...


June 27, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Can Bayview Strike Gold as Buyer of New Loans?

Bayview Asset Management of Coral Gables, FL, is entering the mortgage origination business at a precarious time: Funding volumes this year could fall to just $1 trillion, one of the worst showings since the turn of the century. But that hasn’t deterred the privately-held company, whose investors include the well regarded BlackRock Financial. Since launching a correspondent purchase program a few months ago, Bayview has reviewed roughly $500 million in collateral, purchasing ...


June 27, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Biggest Slice of GSE Business Comes From High FICO/Mid-Range LTV

The biggest source of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac business during the first five months of 2014 came from loans with high credit scores and loan-to-value ratios that don’t require mortgage insurance, according to a new Inside Mortgage Trends analysis. Some 34.0 percent of mortgages securitized by the two government-sponsored enterprises through May of this year had credit scores of 740 or higher and LTV ratios ranging from 61 percent to 80 percent ... [Includes one data chart]


June 20, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

Around the Industry

NY Passes Bill to Reduce Number of FHA Loans that Would Fall Under Subprime. The New York Assembly recently passed legislation that would result in fewer FHA loans being classified as “subprime” under state banking law, according to the law firm Ballard Spahr. Already passed by the Senate, the bill would make permanent prior emergency rules issued by the Department of Financial Services, which raised the subprime threshold 75 basis points for those loans subject to the revised FHA mortgage-insurance premium cancellation policy. Although the emergency rules were set to expire on Dec. 31, 2013, the DFS granted an extension to allow the state legislature additional time to find a permanent solution, said Ballard Spahr attorneys. The bill passed with overwhelming bipartisan support and strong industry backing, and is expected to ...


June 20, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

FHA Jumbo Production Continues Slide in 1Q14

FHA jumbo loan originations fell significantly in the first quarter of 2014 due primarily to higher mortgage insurance premiums and a decrease in the mortgage loan limits, particularly in high-cost areas of the country, according to Inside FHA Lending’s analysis of agency data. FHA lenders reported a meager $2.4 billion in jumbo originations during the first three months of the year, a decrease of 21.2 percent from the previous quarter and down a whopping 55.7 percent from the same period a year ago. Purchase loans accounted for 81.0 percent of new originations while fixed-rate loans comprised 86.8 percent. FHA jumbo loans are those over $417,000 and they comprise a very small slice of the FHA’s overall loan portfolio. Citing FHA data, Brian Chappelle, a mortgage industry consultant, said that of the FHA loans originated in the last 12 months, roughly 11,000 loans were above $500,000, down from ... [ 2 charts]


June 20, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

Agencies Crack Down on False Ads, Marketing

Two federal agencies have announced separate actions to protect reverse mortgage borrowers and rural home purchasers from deceptive advertising and marketing. This week, the FHA warned lenders participating in the Home Equity Conversion Mortgage program not to use misleading or deceptive language in marketing FHA-insured reverse mortgages to consumers. The FHA said the guidance is intended to protect HECM borrowers from advertising and presentations that appear to limit their options rather than informing them of the full range of available HECM products. Underscoring senior borrowers’ “freedom of choice,” FHA Commissioner Carol Galante said the agency wants lenders to know their marketing and advertising practices are under constant surveillance to prevent customers from being steered to unsuitable reverse mortgage products. Galante noted the ...


June 20, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

Lenders Feel ‘Unsafe’ Dealing with FHA

SunTrust Mortgage’s recent settlement of a dispute with the federal government and 49 state attorneys general over defective FHA loans and Wells Fargo’s losing bid to quash a similar lawsuit are raising concerns about doing business with the FHA. Industry attorneys say the lesson for lenders in these recent industry debacles is that it is “extraordinarily dangerous” to do FHA loans these days given the outcome of the two cases. It is also getting harder to trust mortgage settlement agreements with the government, they added. “The scariest part in all these is the combination of government forces involved in these claims – state AGs, Department of Justice, Department of Housing and Urban Development and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau,” said an attorney, who worked on both cases. “When they want to get you, they can get you.” Others believe these developments could have a ...


June 19, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Little Evidence of Impact of CFPB Mortgage Rules Six Months After Implementation

Six months after the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau implemented rules for originations and servicing, it’s too early to tell what impact the rules have had, according to industry participants, consumer advocates and even officials at the CFPB. The CFPB this week convened a meeting of its consumer advisory board, a 19-member panel of consumer advocates and other industry participants. Board members had plenty to say about issues in the mortgage market, but evidence about the impact of the CFPB’s rules – the reason for the meeting – was scant. Abhishek Agarwal, the CFPB’s acting assistant director of mortgage markets, said...


June 19, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Home-Equity Lending Slowed in Early 2014 For Most; Portfolios Continued to Dwindle

Home-equity lending fell off sharply during the first quarter of 2014, but the sector may be poised for a rebound in the months ahead. Home-equity originations totaled an estimated $13 billion during the first three months of this year, down 18.8 percent from the previous quarter. That was up 8.3 percent from the first quarter of 2013, and a handful of lenders reported increased home-equity activity in early 2014. Most closed-end seconds and home-equity lines of credit are retained...[Includes three data charts]


Poll

Home-equity lending is beginning to show new life. My company (pick one):

Plans to enter this market over the next 12 months.
Is already making home equity loans and hopes to increase the offerings.
Is in the market but don’t expect much growth.
Is not making second liens and has no plans to do so.

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