Commercial and multifamily mortgage loan originations were 49% higher in the first quarter or 2015 than during the same period last year, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.

The MBA says that following the usual seasonal pattern, first quarter 2015 originations saw a 26% decrease from the fourth quarter of 2014.

“The year-end momentum from 2014 carried into the first quarter of 2015, with year-over-year growth in lending for every major property type,” said Jamie Woodwell, MBA’s Vice President of Commercial Real Estate Research. “Multifamily lending was a key driver of first quarter originations and the GSEs drove multifamily. The GSEs’ multifamily originations increased by 306% compared to Q1 2014, marking their second highest quarter on record, while multifamily originations for other capital sources appear to have remained flat or declined.”

Increases in originations for industrial and multifamily properties led the overall increase in commercial/multifamily lending volumes when compared to the first quarter of 2014.

The increase included a 269% increase in the dollar volume of loans for industrial properties, a 71% increase for multifamily properties, a 53% increase for office properties, a 51% increase for hotel properties, and a five% increase in retail property loans. Health care property loans were essentially unchanged year-over-year.

Among investor types, the dollar volume of loans originated GSE loans increased by 306% from last year’s first quarter. There was a 113% increase for CMBS loans, a 51% increase for life insurance company loans, and a one percent decrease in dollar volume for commercial bank portfolio loans.

First quarter 2015 originations for health care properties decreased 62% compared to the fourth quarter 2014. There was a 57% decrease in originations for retail properties, a 33% decrease for hotel properties, a 31% decrease for multifamily properties, a 25% decrease for office properties, and a 127% increase for industrial properties from the fourth quarter 2014.

 Among investor types, between the fourth quarter of 2014 and first quarter of 2015, the dollar volume of loans for commercial bank portfolios decreased 23%, loans for life insurance companies decreased 18%, originations for CMBS decreased 14%, and loans for GSEs decreased by 13%. 

3d rendering of a row of luxury townhouses along a street

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