Morning Briefing: Freddie extends disaster relief for Hurricane Matthew impact

by Steve Randall10 Oct 2016
Freddie extends disaster relief for Hurricane Matthew impact
Homeowners whose mortgages are owned or guaranteed by Freddie Mac who have been affected by Hurricane Matthew are now able to access additional help under disaster relief programs.

Freddie Mac says that mortgage servicers can leverage forbearance programs to provide immediate support to those impacted by the devastating storms.

"We strongly encourage the many American families whose homes or businesses are being impacted by Hurricane Matthew to call their mortgage servicer once the Federal Emergency Management Agency's declaration is announced," said Yvette Gilmore, Freddie Mac's Vice President of Single-Family Servicer Performance Management. "Relief -- including forbearance on mortgage payments for up to one year -- may be available if their mortgage is owned or guaranteed by Freddie Mac."

Options available include the suspension of foreclosures and waiving of late payment fees and penalties.
 
Homebuyers showing increased caution
There was increased caution by potential homebuyers in September with the likelihood of increased mortgage rates the main concern.

The Fannie Mae Home Purchase Sentiment Index declined 2.2 points to 82.8 with those who expect mortgage rates to go down dropping 6 percentage points.

Those who think now is a good time to buy a home also declined, by 5 percentage points, to a net 29 per cent while those who think it’s a good time to sell stayed at 15 per cent.

“Downside changes came in particular from the HPSI components mortgage rate direction and good time to buy a house. In addition, the starter home tight supply and rising home prices as well as the unsettled political environment are likely giving many consumers a reason to pause or question their home purchase sentiment,” said Bob Duggan, Fannie’s chief economist.

The net share of Americans who think home prices will increase in the next 12 months fell 1 percentage point to 34 per cent.
 
These markets expect to see above-average rent rises
Seattle and Portland are expected to see the highest increase in rents in the next 12 months.

Analysis from Zillow forecasts that nationwide rent appreciation will be 1.7 per cent with 34 of the largest 35 metros seeing gains although 11 of them will be at a slower pace.

Seattle is expected to see rents rise 7.2 per cent with a 6 per cent increase in Portland. Los Angeles, Denver, San Francisco, San Jose, Cincinnati, Sacramento, San Diego and Phoenix are all expected to increase by at least 4.5 per cent.

"High rent growth in these markets is being driven by high demand and low supply," said Zillow Chief Economist Dr. Svenja Gudell. "We have more renters today than in the past and most newly formed households are renter households.”

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