Someone is always upset when they are left off of some list, but, a national brokerage, has published the top 25 metro areas by home price changes from August-September 2014 compared with August-September 2015. The data found that the price for a three-bedroom single-family home in Denver, CO increased nearly 12%, followed by Orlando, FL and Miami, FL at 11.6 percent and 11 percent, respectively. (Contrast that with the price for a three-bedroom family home in the New York metropolitan area into New Jersey and Pennsylvania dropping 6.7 percent.) Other metro areas that round out the top ten in price increases include Washington-Arlington-Alexandria DC-VA-MD-WV, Boston-Cambridge, MA, Portland, OR, Pittsburg, PA, Nashville, TN and Tampa, FL. (Don't ask me what happened to San Francisco.)

Have you ever heard of Caivers (as opposed to CAIVRS)? Me neither, but thanks to Nick S. for passing along the name of the company that is the reporting agency the FHA or VA would report to when they file a claim for payment - and that is when the clock starts ticking.
What About the FHA Loan Limits? The FHA's "floor" and "high cost" loan limits are based on the baseline loan limit for the GSEs. Specifically, the FHA's conforming loan limit "floor" and "high cost ceiling" are 65% and 150%, respectively, of the GSE baseline loan limit. We expect the FHA to announce its 2016 loan limit decision in December, which will include some county-level differences, but will remain within the same bands as 2015.
The MBA's Chart of the Week for November 13th showcased VA purchase loan share and loan size. The chart suggests an increase in the VA's share of purchase loan application in 2015. Starting in March of this year, VA's share of purchase applications grew from 10 percent to roughly 12 percent, maintaining that average throughout the rest of the year. The average loan size for a VA purchase loan was $247,000 in 2015, up from $232,000 in 2014.
FHA has added temporary approval provisions for condominium project approval, effective immediately. The mortgagee letter provides a revised calculation for FHA required owner-occupancy percentage, to allow units that are not investor-owned to be considered owner occupied for the purpose of Condo approval. For multi-phased projects, the owner-occupancy percentage is calculated on the total number of units in the first declared phase and cumulatively on subsequent phases or for single-phase condominium project approval requests, all units are used in the denominator when calculating required owner-occupancy percentage. The mortgagee letter also identifies the expansion of eligible insurance coverage, as the HOA is required to maintain adequate "master" or "blanket" property insurance in an amount equal to 100% of current replacement cost of the condominium exclusive of land, foundation, excavation and other items normally excluded from coverage. Additionally, the mortgagee letter addresses the requirements for obtaining condominium project recertification.
The latest Black Knight Mortgage Monitor is out, and it takes a look at the high LTV loan universe. FHA has become the go-to high LTV loan product, and their high LTV loans account for 77% of FHA / VA origination. Fannie and Freddie did about 1% in high LTV loans. So it appears that the government sponsored enterprises" (GSEs) introduction of 97 percent loan-to-value (LTV) mortgages, implemented by Fannie Mae' in late 2014 and by Freddie Mac in the spring of 2015, has apparently done little damage to the government guarantee sector's dominance in that market place.  Low down payment lending, that is mortgages with a 95 percent or higher LTV ratio, were up 20 percent in the third quarter of 2015 compared to the same period in 2014 while the overall purchase market expanded by only 13 percent.
VA's November circular states effective immediately, lenders may accept a Veteran's assertion of spousal status when a Veteran is applying for home loan benefits. Read the details here.
The VALERI Servicer newsflash for December 4, 2015 contains information regarding, New Net Value. New Maximum Allowable Foreclosure Timeframes, Circular 26-15-30, Title Documentation of HOA Matters in Florida, Pre-Approval Procedures, VALERI Reports, Deficiency Waiver Letter and development updates for VALERI 3.7 manifest release scheduled for Saturday, December 12, 2015. To view the information, click the Servicer Newsflash December 4, 2015.pdf.
VA has increased its appraisal fees as of December 1st. Use this link to view current fee schedules. Click on a particular State and it will take you to the supporting Regional Loan Center, where you can obtain maximum allowable fees for the appraisal type and the number of days allowed for completion.
VA has provided a newsflash containing information on the Federal Register - Maximum Allowable Attorney Fees, Servicer Calls, New HUD-1 Settlement Statement Disclosure and Report Name Change. Details are available on the VALERI Servicer Newsflash for November 6, 2015.pdf
California's Land Home Financial spread the word that LHFS Wholesale has the FHA Streamline program. This product offering includes no employment verification, and the Existing subordinate financing may remain in place up to 125% CLTV.
First Community Mortgage has posted its November bulletin outlining guideline changes. Changes include ineligibility of repair escrow cash-out on VA, FHA and conventional transactions.
NewLeaf announced enhancements to its VA guidelines that are effective immediately. Collection accounts no longer need to be paid off by closing. Additional enhancements to both IRRL and VA cash-out have been posted.
M & T Bank has updated information regarding VA loans, VA Staff Appraisal Reviewers are reminded of the five-day requirement to review a VA Appraisal and issue a Notice of Value.  VA has confirmed that the five-day limit is measured in business days (not calendar days), and that federal holidays are excluded from the count. Also, The VA has simplified its earlier guidance on determining Spousal Status.  The VA product pages have been updated to state:  Determination of Spousal Status - The marriage is recognized by the VA if: The borrowers select "Married" as their marital status on the 1003, and The borrowers check off "Veteran & Spouse" on the HUD/VA Addendum. The borrowers signature on the 1003 and on the HUD/VA Addendum to Uniform Residential Loan Application (VA Form 26-1802a), is all that is required to satisfy these requirements, the VA Underwriter does not have to do anything more.
Effective immediately for all applications and loans in process, per VA Circular 26-15-29 issued November 5th, 2015, USBHM will no longer be required to submit income documentation to VA for same sex married applicants. A Supreme Court ruling regarding same sex marriages allows VA to recognize all marriages without regard to a Veteran's state of residence. VA will accept the applicants assertion that he or she is married on the VA Form 26-1802a, HUD/VA Addendum to Uniform Residential Loan Application to establish spousal status. All married applicants will be processed in the same manner without any additional scrutiny or development.

Of course the bulk of FHA & VA loans go into GNMA securities, and Ginnie Mae announced it is enhancing the disclosure of Ginnie II program information by providing Multiple Issuer Pools (MIP) in the MBS Daily (Loan Level) file.
Michael Ehrlich with ThomsonReuters penned, "I would like to provide a bit more clarity regarding GNMA disclosures specific to Broker-sourced loans. When an issuer reports pool issuance data to GNMA, they are required to identify whether the loan was Broker, Correspondent or Retail. Upon further analysis of GNMA reporting requirements and field definitions, I was able to determine that this reporting field for 'Third-Party Origination Type' actually specifies 'the type of party that participated in the origination process, specifically taking in the loan application.' Hence, a loan will show up broker if a broker took in the loan application. This would still hold true even if a mortgage bank closed and funded the loan and sold it correspondent to Chase, Nationstar, Pennymac....etc. The Broker/Wholesale volumes would then include Correspondent acquired loans that were sold to the issuing investor from another mortgage bank who acquired the loan from an originator who originated it as a broker (would that be 4th Party TPO?!). Several large correspondent shops reached out to me to tell me they did not originate ANYTHING via a wholesale channel; contradicting the volume numbers under 'broker' that appeared for their company in the rankings. This would explain why broker volumes are reported. (Note, the GNMA issuer reports these fields directly to GNMA).
While we're talking about securities, up some, down some, so go the markets. On no real news of substance the U.S. Treasury market ended mostly higher Wednesday as equities fell sharply and oil ended modestly lower. Aside from some forgettable inventory numbers the only event was a $21 billion 10-year Treasury note auction was met with strong demand.
Today we've had Initial Jobless Claims for the week ending 12/05 and Continuing Jobless Claims for the week ending 11/29 (+13k from 269k and 2.16 to 2.24 million, respectively), and November Export Prices ex-ag and Import Prices ex-oil (import prices -.4%), along with the Treasury auctioning off $13 billion in 30-year T-bonds. We closed Wednesday with the 10-year at 2.22%, the same place it's been much of 2015, and after this initial spate of news we're pretty much unchanged from Wednesday's closing levels.

Jobs and Announcements

Originators or aggregators are usually looking for new products to expand their repertoire. SG Capital Partners, a rapidly growing investor with significant assets under management, has seen growing traction with its diverse range of products in the Non-Agency/Non-QM and Non-Prime space. SGCP recently redesigned its "Investor Access" product which is a simplified product for real estate investors focused on LTV and borrower credit. Guides allow for loan amounts up to $2 million at 75% LTV, with 3/1 & 5/1 options available. SG's products permit loan amounts designed to capture MSAs throughout the country. To learn more about this product or SG Capital's other offerings, please contact: SGCPConduitSales@sgcp. com.
Here's a unique listing for a "Senior Underwriter and Rules Architect from LendingHome." "Come build the world's leading mortgage marketplace! LendingHome has combined an all-star team with the best technology to reimagine the largest debt market in the world. We are seeking a highly qualified consumer mortgage underwriter to collaborate with our Business Operations and Engineering team to help us design the business requirements, process and procedures for our proprietary automated underwriting system. The candidate must have extensive mortgage underwriting experience and a deep understanding of the end-to-end origination process. As this person will be helping design our system requirements, you must be an extremely structured thinker and be able to clearly and methodically explain and map out loan situations." To apply click on the link above; confidential inquiries can be addressed to Kate Elliott.
And Sierra Pacific Mortgage is spreading the word that its 30th anniversary is coming up in March. "We are gearing up for another successful year and setting the foundation for the next 30 years. Over the past year and a half, we have been hiring the best in the industry to help Sierra Pacific grow and maximize its potential. Our recent hires begin with Gary Clark, Chief Operating Officer, and continue with Christina Long, Director of Marketing, Thomas Hull, Chief Risk Officer, Jeff Kibby, Chief Compliance and Counsel, and finally, Kelli Brookman, Director of Coaching and Development. As part of their industry leadership, Sierra Pacific will be starting the 'Market Power' webinar series. Through this series, Kelli Brookman will host ongoing webinars for industry professionals from leading industry experts.  The inaugural webinar will feature the National Association of Realtors delivering their 2015 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers tomorrow, December 11th at 12 pm PST.  You can register for our first webinar here: Our second Marketing Power webinar will be Tuesday, December 15th at 11:00am PST, and you can register for it here:"
On the opposite end of the spectrum Morgan Stanley announced it was laying off 1,200 folks. And Rabobank is cutting 9,000 jobs worldwide. (If any of you have begun the job search, and interested in capital markets positions, resumes can be posted for free at www.Lender