HECM Endorsements Settle into ‘Default Setting’ in June

Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) endorsements dropped slightly by 5.6 percent to 2,546 loans for the month of June 2019, which indicates that the endorsement levels have started to settle into a more recognizable field of relative normality. This is according to the June HECM Lenders report compiled by Reverse Market Insight (RMI).

“[This recorded drop is] lending further support to the idea that 2,500 endorsements per month is the default volume setting for the industry right now,” said RMI President John Lunde in introducing the June data. “Some regions looked better than others.”

This monthly endorsement figure coincides with the figure Lunde offered last month as a potential “floor” for regular reverse mortgage endorsements.

“I’d say this is regular endorsement volatility month-to-month in the context of current trend of around 2,500/month,” Lunde said of the May data, which stood at 2,697 loans for that month. “April was high and [May’s data] is still above the average from several months previous.”

Regional data highlights for the month of June saw the New England region jump 23.9 percent to 109 loans. The Northwest/Alaska region grew 16.5 percent to 212 loans, which is interesting considering that specific areas like Seattle, Wash. and Portland, Ore. are down over 40 percent when compared with each city’s recorded 2018 figures, Lunde says. The Pacific/Hawaii region also increased 7.2 percent to 791 loans.

Although endorsements were down, three of the top 10 lenders recorded notable increases in endorsement activity. HighTechLending saw a 68.6 percent spike for a total of 59 loans; Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation rose 40 percent to 98 loans; and Finance of America Reverse grew 21.6 percent to 214 loans.

Read the full HECM Lenders report for June at RMI for specific breakdowns and detailed regional performance data.

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