Tired of playing Rummikub with the fam? (Why are those red 11’s always in short supply?) Let’s divert your attention and ease back into residential mortgages with a news story from the Census Bureau. Sorry California: for the first time since 1957 Florida is the fastest growing state. Sure, in “God’s waiting room” there are hurricanes, and the place is as flat as a pancake, but a 0 percent state income rate versus California’s 12 percent may have something to do with it. And then we have those winter temperatures to help one forget about the palmetto bugs (aka, wood cockroaches). Returning to the numbers, Florida has no state income tax, no tax on retirement income, no inheritance or estate taxes, has homestead exemptions for permanent residents, property tax cuts for anyone over 65 and for older veterans. Florida is certainly not broke but where do to ducats come from? Florida’s state government generates the bulk of general revenue (75 to 80 percent depending on the year) from sales tax collections. It collects the rest from a variety of sources, including documentary stamp taxes, insurance taxes, hospitality taxes, and corporate income taxes. It has to come from somewhere, right? Today’s podcast is coming from Candor Technology. Home of the One Touch Underwrite, supporting lenders from Point of Sale to Post Close QC, to reduce repurchase risk, increase underwriter productivity by 400 percent, and decrease turn-times by 10 days.
Lender and Broker Software, Services, and Products
“Most consumers start their homeownership journey searching for homes or finding a real estate agent. To thrive in 2023, loan officers need to become indispensable to their top-tier agents and add value to attract new agents to their circle of influence. Prospective homebuyers can be provided with a FinLocker app early in their homebuying journey to review their credit, organize their finances and search for a property before they trigger any actions that alert the competition. Data-driven personalized communication keeps loan officers connected while homebuyers are nurtured toward mortgage readiness. Download our paper, 8 Ways Loan Officers Can Strengthen Relationships With Real Estate Agents, to help agents generate leads, grow their business, get home buyers off the fence, and sell more homes faster. Mortgage lenders can see how private-labeling FinLocker can help fill their sales pipeline for the next 12 months by watching our online demo or scheduling a consultation.”
“Add staff or outsource seamlessly in 2023. Nobody needs the headache of adding or reducing head count in response to market ups and downs, especially when kicking off a new year. Protect your firm from the downside of lower volume and thinner margins with Richey May’s Advisory services. As a nationally recognized leader in the mortgage industry, we can provide staff augmentation and outsourced services as business dictates. Tap our consulting services to figure out the best ways to become more profitable and size up cash flows, including your servicing models. Lean on our subservicer oversight team to make sure your servicers are hitting their marks. We can design our services to fit your needs, acting as your outside finance team or working with existing staff to get important projects done. Reach out or visit us to learn more about how we can lighten the load.”
UMortgage, a national mortgage platform, proved that it wasn’t slowing down this December by capping the year with four major announcements. Following the addition of mortgage broker icon, Todd Bitter, to its executive leadership team, UMortgage announced the acquisition of NXT Mortgage, founded by Tyler Hodgson, and onboarded high-producing Cincinnati-based branches led by Breon Price (the #1 ranked broker in Ohio) and Chad Curtin. “It’s the hybrid that’s going to lead the industry,” says Bitter, “I see UMortgage as a disrupter to an industry that’s needed one for a long time." With a 1500 percent growth in loan originators just this calendar year, the UMortgage platform has no sight of slowing down in 2023. If you’d like to learn more about the UMortgage platform and how it can help you win more clients, sign up for the weekly UMortgage Discovery Meeting every Thursday at 2pm ET.
Processing, Product, “Back Office” News
Some of the fundamental ways that companies handle loans evolves over time. And the product offerings also shift as companies continue to look at non-Agency loans like non-QM or jumbo offerings. Let’s take a random look at who’s doing what.
The eClose program is now available at Fairway Wholesale Lending. eClose Hybrid offers an enhanced and convenient closing experience for borrowers, providing full access to thoroughly review closing disclosures directly from their laptop, smartphone, or tablet. A worry-free option providing speed, convenience, and security in the final stages of the loan transaction. View Fairway Wholesale Lending Client Announcement 2022-12-21 for additional information.
Effective on December 22nd, A&D Mortgage increased its minimum FICO on select Non-QM programs.
Effective for all loan submissions received on and after January 1, 2023, Carrington Mortgage Services will implement Correspondent underwriting fee changes. These fees are not in the loan origination fees and will be charged when loan is purchased and netted from wire.
In jumbo news, the recent survey of new mortgage applications from the MBA shows that the average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $647,200) decreased to 5.97 percent from 6.14 percent, with points increasing to 0.53 from 0.42 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans.
AmeriHome Mortgage issued a reminder in Product Announcement 20221207-CL regarding Portfolio Express and Portfolio Jumbo minimum loan amounts.
Mortgage rates ended last week on the rise, though not many people noticed with most away from their desks for the holidays or dealing with the storm. As the year draws to a close, economic data remains mixed with some areas humming along and others clearly struggling. One of those struggling is housing. Permits for new residential construction fell 11.2 percent in November, indicating that housing starts will be lower for some time. Permits are off 29 percent from their peak last December. Existing home sales were down 7.7 percent in November, have fallen 37 percent since the beginning of the year, and are at their slowest pace since May 2020. New home sales are down 23 percent since January. Despite this, consumer confidence rose more than expected in November as expectations about future inflation waned.
Nominal personal income rose 0.4 percent following a 0.7 percent increase in October. However, the gains have not kept pace with inflation and real income was down 2.5 percent in November which led to lower consumer spending and a personal savings rate near an all-time low. The PCE Price Index was also up just 0.1 percent month-over-month and 5.5 percent on a year-over-year basis, versus 6.1 percent in October. The core-PCE Price Index was up 4.7 percent, versus 5.0 percent in October. As of yet, this won’t sway the Fed to change its current stance of higher rates for longer. Chair Powell noted in his recent press conference, “we are not at a sufficiently restrictive policy stance yet,” and the “strong view on the FOMC is we need to hold rates at peak until we are really confident inflation is coming down in a sustained way.”
This is a shortened week, being closed Monday for Christmas and an early bond market close Friday ahead of New Year’s. It should be uneventful. Economic releases began this morning with the trade balance figures for November (-$83 billion) and wholesale inventories +.1 percent. Later this morning brings home price indexes for October from FHFA (previously 11.0 percent year-over-year) and S&P/Case-Shiller, and the Dallas Fed manufacturing business index for December. The remainder of the week is highlighted by plenty of supply from the Treasury between the month-end auctions and usual bills. We begin the trading week with Agency MBS prices worse .125 and the 10-year yielding 3.79 after closing Friday at 3.75 percent.
Atlanta-based Highland Mortgage continues to grow! In October Highland tapped Mickey Schilling, CMB® as its new VP of National Sales. December additions included Charley Perry, Branch Manager in Calhoun, GA; Tara Purvis, Branch Manager in Valdosta, GA; and Donna Williamson, Branch Manager in Mt. Pleasant, SC. Now in its third year, Fannie Mae-approved Highland Mortgage is well-positioned to expand its footprint nationwide under Mickey’s guidance. Here are Mickey’s top reasons why Highland is the right destination for you.
Mountain West Financial is continuing its expansion forward by deepening its roots in Northern California. Click here to hear from longtime branch manager, Tisha Torres, who recently returned to the MWF Family. “I'm excited to welcome our Rio Linda branch back to MWF. This decision is an affirmation of our commitment to Branch Managers and Originators. We are focused on attracting elite professionals and helping originators do more volume,” said Ed Adams, SVP Production at Mountain West Financial, Inc. Interested in learning more about the MWF Family, please reach out to Ed Adams.
In the Northwest, Banner Bank is searching for Builder Direct Mortgage Loan Officers as well as Mortgage Loan Officers. These are true portfolio lending opportunities with local decision making and direct to Fannie and Freddie loans with retained servicing to assist in client retention and marketing opportunities. Additional highlighted products cover CRA lending with private label no payment down payment assistance to help assist all borrowers with the right opportunity. The right fit for an established team or the individual looking to grow their business and take the next step in their career. Please send resume to Aaron Miller.
There are advantages in being an originator for a national bank, and NBH is looking for growth-oriented originators in its footprint states which include CO, MO, KS, TX, UT, NM, ID, and WY. Any loan originators interested in a career with NBH, please send me a confidential resume for forwarding.