What to expect at HousingWire’s Spring Summit

The focus of the Summit is The Year-Round Purchase Market. Record low rates led to a banner year for mortgage lenders in 2020, and this year is expected to be just as incredible.

How real estate agents can increase profitability in 2021

As real estate professionals strategize on how to do business in this competitive, fast-paced market, they’ll discover the need for better tools to market their listings.

HousingWire's 2021 Spring Summit

We’ve gathered four of the top housing economists to speak at our virtual summit, a new event designed for HW+ members that’s focused on The Year-Round Purchase Market.

An Honest Conversation on minority homeownership

In this episode, Lloyd interviews a senior research associate in the Housing Finance Policy Center at the Urban Institute about the history and data behind minority homeownership.

Mortgage

U.S. mortgage rates rise on risk assessment

The average U.S. rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage is 2.99% this week, Freddie Mac says

Average U.S. mortgage rates for a 30-year fixed mortgage rose to 2.99% this week from 2.96% last week, Freddie Mac said in a report on Thursday.

The average 15-year rate rose to 2.54% from 2.46%, according to the mortgage financier.

The upward moves come after the Federal Housing Finance Agency approved a new “adverse market” fee for refinancings to compensate Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for the additional risk posed by the economic crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“The fact that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are assessing a 50 basis point adverse market fee on refinancings is not something that will reassure lenders, whether for refis or purchase loans,” said Keith Gumbinger of HSH.com. “That was a beacon telling the market `There’s a lot of risk out here,’ and that’s going to put upward pressure on rates.”

The course of the economic recovery is dependent on whether Congress will address the COVID-19 pandemic, Moody’s Investors Service said in a report on Thursday.

Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) called the House of Representatives back from its traditional August vacation this week, but the Senate remains on summer break and currently isn’t scheduled to be back in session until Sept. 7.

The Moody’s report panned the four directives signed by President Donald Trump on Aug. 8 that he said would address the lapse in beefed-up unemployment benefits and other issues.

“The recent executive actions meant to provide relief to vulnerable households are subject to implementation risk and too limited in scope to provide significant support to the economy,” the Moody’s report said.

Even with the increase this week, mortgage rates remain low and will support the economy with home purchases and renovations, said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist.

“Purchase housing demand continues to accelerate, ultimately providing support to an economy that otherwise has stagnated,” Khater said. “The surge in sales led to a rapid increase in the demand for remodeling and home furnishings as consumers look to renovate while adjusting to home life during COVID.”

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