Morning Briefing: FHFA limits raised but only for some

by Steve Randall27 Nov 2015
FHFA limits raised but only for some
The Federal Housing Finance Agency raised its conforming loans limit for some homebuyers this week but for most the limits are unchanged. Loans conforming to Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae guidelines will increase for 39 high-cost counties but stay at $417,000 for most one-bedroom properties across America. Those who should benefit include buyers in the Denver area where 10 counties will have limits of $458,850 in 2016; Seattle has three counties with a limit raised to $540,500; Boston has seven counties with a limit raised to $523,250; and Nashville with 14 counties seeing limits rise to $437,000.

There are also four Californian counties on the list with limits raised to by up to $33,350 but the state’s realtors’ association is disappointed at only a few areas seeing increased limits: “Home prices in California have risen sharply over the past four years, yet conforming loan limits haven’t changed during that time.  Not increasing the loan limits will hurt California’s housing market, further exacerbating housing affordability and preventing tens of thousands of California homebuyers from a chance at homeownership” said C.A.R. President Ziggy Zicarelli. 
Mortgage applications lower last week
Mortgage applications dropped in the week ending Nov. 20 according to the Mortgage Bankers’ Association. The Market Composite Index decreased 3.2 per cent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier.  On an unadjusted basis it increased 6 per cent. The Refinance Index decreased 5 per cent; the seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 1 per cent; the unadjusted Purchase Index increased 5 per cent and was 24 percent higher than the same week one year ago.

The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to 58.7 per cent of total applications from 58.6 per cent the previous week. ARM share increased to 6.4 per cent. The average loan size for purchase applications reached a survey high at $303, 600. The FHA share of total applications decreased to 13.7 per cent from 14.4 per cent the week prior. The VA share of total applications decreased to 11.0 per cent from 11.7 per cent the week prior. The USDA share of total applications remained unchanged from 0.7 percent the week prior.
All My Children star sells Harlem home
Cameron Mathison, former star of All My Children, is selling his Harlem home according to the New York Post. The actor, TV host and Dancing with the Stars contestant is asking $2.89 million for the 20-foot wide home at 136 W. 36th St. The listing agent is DeAnna Rieber of Halstead and the home is believed to be under contract.