Dr. Cliff Rossi is senior vice president, chief economist, at Radian Group Inc. In this position, Rossi is responsible for research, forecasts and quantitative analysis and [financial] modeling of Radian’s mortgage insurance portfolio and the housing and mortgage markets.
Armed with an overall measure of housing market performance relative to long-term trend; an accompanying metric explaining whether that market is overheated or not; and importantly a way to attribute deviations in home prices precisely to selected market variables, market participants would be in a better position to take precautionary actions to limit their exposure in highly volatile markets.
The FHA finds itself in a delicate position of balancing public policy interests against actuarial soundness of its $1 trillion plus Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund. These twin policy goals at times run counter to each other, occasionally spilling over into the conventional-conforming market via FHA premium changes that create market distortions and adverse selection problems for the FHA.
Factors that affect the yield on 10-year Treasuries will over time be reflected in mortgage rates. Two of these are inflation and economic conditions. We have enjoyed a low inflation environment for a number of years but if we had a bout of higher inflation it would lead to higher rates as investors in bonds require additional compensation for a loss in buying power.
That lenders may be holding back a bit is not surprising as lessons from behavioral finance studies suggest that individuals tend to weight recent experience more than the past. Applied to the mortgage business and compounded by rising compliance costs, recent experience with heavy credit losses of the crisis could be dampening management enthusiasm for credit expansion in an otherwise expanding, albeit tepid economy.
Build to rent allows investors to buy newly built homes and rent them out instead of selling them. Because the homes are new, investors are able to charge higher rent prices and tenants often stay in the home for longer periods of time. But the question remains: Why would builders move into the rental market during a time when homes are selling quickly and at higher prices than any time in the past decade?
Today the average student debt resulting from a four-year degree stands at $30,000. According to a report released by American Student Assistance in 2015, 71% of non-homeowners surveyed who carry student debt say the burden of monthly payments has kept them from purchasing a home. More than half of those say their student debt loads will likely prevent home ownership for another five years.
Currently, institutional investors control approximately 170,000 properties (a relatively small portion of the overall SFR space, which is dominated by smaller investors, and estimated to include 11 to 13 million properties). KBRA reports that 105,000 properties have been included in the 26 single-borrower deals done to date, which suggests there are somewhere north of 60,000 properties that could still be securitized.