June Reverse Mortgage Endorsement Drop Led by Retail Segment

Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) endorsements fell by 5.6% in the month of June, hitting a threshold of 2,544 loans according to the latest data from Reverse Market Insight (RMI). The drop was led primarily by the retail endorsement segment of business, which experienced a drop of 8.7% that month, while wholesale growth managed to remain nearly steady by dropping only 0.9%.

Only three of the top 10 lenders recorded gains for the month as similarly noted in June’s HECM Lenders report, but some of the specific figures have been revised upward. For instance, HighTechLending – June’s most visibly improved lender – recorded a 73.5% rise in endorsements to 59 loans, up from a previous figure of 68.6%.

Also revised upward was Finance of America Reverse’s June growth rate, now at 35.8% compared to the previously recorded jump of 21.6%. Fairway Independent Mortgage Corporation maintained its 40% growth rate in June according to the new RMI report.

In terms of why the retail side is leading in terms of endorsement drops, RMI President John Lunde said that the overall reasoning was unclear.

“It’s really hard to tell,” Lunde said in an email to RMD. “[Both the retail and wholesale endorsement figures] are back at their March levels, so the last few months might just be noise between the channels.”

March’s endorsement data was still seeing the effects of the partial federal government shutdown that stretched from December 22, 2018 to January 25, 2019.

Although the overall percentage figure of endorsements is nearly identical to RMI’s previous June HECM Lenders report, Lunde previously detailed for RMD that the HECM Originators report is useful in seeing the splits in and health of the retail versus wholesale channels, which helps to illustrate how lenders are doing from a more individualized and channel-specific perspective.

Read the full HECM Originators report at RMI for specific breakdowns.

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