Purchase originations rise along with interest rates

by Steve Randall19 Apr 2018

There was a jump in the share of mortgage originations that were for home purchase in March according to Ellie Mae.

The mortgage software firm’s Origination Report shows that purchase loans took a 62% share of all originations, up 6% from the previous month; while the share of loans originated for refinancing slipped to 38% from 43%.

The gain for purchase mortgages came as interest rates for a 30-year mortgages rose from an average 4.48% in February to 4.69% in March. There was also a rise in adjustable rate mortgages to 6.3% in March from a 5.5% share of all originations in February.

“With interest rates rising to the highest levels since January 2014, we’re seeing the purchase market continue to gain momentum,” said Jonathan Corr, president and CEO of Ellie Mae. “As we’ve seen in the past several months, the shift to a purchase market coupled with the adoption of digital mortgage solutions by our customers aids in driving down the time to close.”

Closing rates for purchase loans rose to 76.3% from 75.7% month-over-month; and for refinances slipped to 64.9% from 65.0%.

The time taken to close all loans was down to 41 days from 42, while average FICO scores increased to 722. LTV was up to 79 and DTI decreased to 26/39.

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