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Mortgage origination expected to grow in fourth quarter

This year hasn't really been a particularly strong one for mortgage originations, as numbers are more or less expected to be down from those seen in 2013. With that having been said, however, many experts are now attributing this condition largely to a dismal first quarter of the year, because business has been more robust from about April on through to today.

The fact of the matter is that a lot of factors combined in the first quarter to drive down mortgage business more or less across the board. Rates rose sharply toward the end of 2013 and stayed elevated – at least in comparison with the kind of numbers to which would-be buyers and refinancers had grown accustomed – as the winter stretched into this year. Further, harsh winter weather repeatedly battered many parts of the country throughout January and February, so even many of those who might have been interested in shopping around for a home loan otherwise might have stayed home.

But as winter weather and rates receded a little, mortgage origination numbers ticked upward, according to a report from Trefis. In both the second and third quarters of the year, the mortgage market saw at least marginal improvement, and the most recent data from the Mortgage Bankers Association shows that the step forward between those two periods – which only came in at about 1 percent – saw the value of such transactions grow to $300 million from $297 million.

What does this mean going forward?
The good news for mortgage lenders is that it's generally believed this trend will continue into the fourth quarter, the report said. Throughout October and even into early November, mortgage application volume has risen fairly steadily, thanks to recent rate drops, which has made refinancing in particular more attractive to consumers who might have previously been on the fence about such a financial move. During this time however, and even more recently when refinance requests began to recede again, there has been a slow but steady uptick among buyers in purchases once again. And if buyers are coming into the market now, when rates and prices have spent the last few years taking steps forward, it's unlikely that they're going to stop even as that trend continues.

However, it might still be wise for lenders to highlight the affordability available in the market today as being particularly attractive to both buyers and current owners. This could increase interest in getting the shopping process started as soon as possible.

By: Equity National   November 11, 2014     Closing


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