Financial Reports

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week – May 30, 2023

What's Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week - May 29, 2023Last week’s economic news included readings on new and pending home sales and inflation. The final monthly reading for May consumer sentiment was released along with weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims.

Shortage of previously-owned homes for sale directs buyers to new homes

Homeowners weren’t in a hurry to sell their homes due to the low mortgage rates they obtained during the pandemic. Current mortgage rates are higher than pandemic-era rates, which influenced homeowners to stay in their homes and keep their lower existing mortgage rates. Home buyers turned to new home developments as an alternative to shopping for a home within the slim supply of available previously-owned homes.

The number of pending home sales was unchanged from March as compared to the expected reading of an 0.80 percent increase in pending sales and the March reading of a -5.20 percent decrease in pending home sales. Rising mortgage rates and concerns over the economy sidelined some sellers and would-be home buyers. Rising inflation continued to impact consumers as prices for goods and services rose by 0.40 percent in April as compared to the March increase of 0.10 percent. Year-over-year inflation rose to 4.40 percent in April as compared to the March year-over-year inflation reading of 4.20 percent. 

Consumer concerns about inflation and recession were supported by the government-sponsored mortgage organization  Fannie Mae, which predicted a recession in the second half of 2023.

Fed forecasts a recession and raises key interest rate range

The minutes of the Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee meeting revealed that policymakers were divided on the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy decision to raise its key interest-rate range to 5.00 percent and 5.25 percent. Some Fed members indicated that May’s interest rate hike may be the last for the near future as expectations of a recession rose. 

Mortgage rates and jobless claims rise

Freddie Mac reported higher mortgage rates last week as the average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by 18 basis points to 6.57 percent. The average rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages rose by 22 basis points to 5.97 percent.

229,000 new jobless claims were filed last week; this reading fell short of the expected reading of 245,000 initial claims filed and exceeded the prior week’s reading of 225,000 claims filed.

What’s Ahead

This week’s scheduled economic reporting includes readings on public and private-sector jobs and the national unemployment rate. Weekly readings on mortgage rates and jobless claims will also be released. 


What is the Difference Between a Reverse Mortgage and a Home Equity Conversion Mortgage?

What is the Difference Between a Reverse Mortgage and a Home Equity Conversion Mortgage?A reverse mortgage and a home equity conversion mortgage (HECM) are both types of loan products that allow homeowners to tap into the equity they have built up in their homes. However, there are some important differences between the two.

A reverse mortgage is a type of loan available to homeowners who are 62 years of age or older. With a reverse mortgage, the lender makes payments to the borrower, which can be taken as a lump sum, line of credit, or regular payments. The loan is paid back when the borrower dies, sells the home, or permanently moves out of the property.

On the other hand, a home equity conversion mortgage (HECM) is a specific type of reverse mortgage that is insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). To qualify for an HECM, the homeowner must be 62 years of age or older and own their home outright or have a low mortgage balance that can be paid off with the proceeds from the HECM.

One of the key differences between a reverse mortgage and an HECM is the way the loan is structured. With a reverse mortgage, the lender makes payments to the borrower, while with an HECM, the borrower can receive payments from the lender or choose to receive a line of credit that they can draw on as needed.

Another important difference is the cost. HECMs are insured by the FHA, which means that they come with certain fees, including an initial mortgage insurance premium, an annual mortgage insurance premium, and other closing costs. Reverse mortgages, on the other hand, may come with different fees depending on the lender.

Overall, while both a reverse mortgage and an HECM can provide homeowners with a way to access the equity in their homes, there are important differences to consider when deciding which option is right for you. It’s important to do your research and speak with a qualified financial professional to understand the pros and cons of each option and make an informed decision.


Running A Quick Financial Health Check Before You Apply For A Mortgage

Running A Quick Financial Health Check Before You Apply For A Mortgage Getting a mortgage is a significant financial decision, and it is crucial to ensure that you are financially prepared before applying for one. Conducting a quick financial health check before applying for a mortgage can help you determine your financial standing and your ability to afford a mortgage payment.

Here are some reasons why you should consider conducting a quick financial health check before applying for a mortgage:

  1. Check your credit score: Your credit score is an important factor that lenders consider when deciding whether to approve your mortgage application. Check your credit score to see where you stand and take steps to improve it if necessary.
  2. Review your debt-to-income ratio: Lenders will also look at your debt-to-income ratio, which is the amount of debt you have compared to your income. If your debt-to-income ratio is too high, you may not be able to qualify for a mortgage. Try to pay down debt and increase your income to improve your debt-to-income ratio.
  3. Calculate your down payment: Most lenders require a down payment of at least 20% of the purchase price of the home. Calculate how much you’ll need for a down payment and make sure you have enough savings.
  4. Determine your monthly housing costs: Take a look at your monthly income and expenses to determine how much you can afford to spend on your mortgage payment, including property taxes and insurance. Make sure you’re comfortable with the monthly cost before applying for a mortgage.
  5. Get pre-approved for a mortgage: Once you’ve completed these steps, it’s a good idea to get pre-approved for a mortgage. This will give you an idea of how much you can borrow and the interest rate you’ll receive.

Conducting a quick financial health check before applying for a mortgage is a smart move. It can help you identify any financial issues, improve your mortgage eligibility, and ensure that you are prepared to take on the financial responsibilities of homeownership.

By following these steps, you’ll be able to quickly assess your financial health to increase your chances of being approved for the loan and determine whether you’re ready to apply for a mortgage.