Last year was best for mortgage originations since 2007
A strong fourth quarter capped the best year for mortgage originations since 2007, Black Knight Financial reports.
“We’ve now seen nine consecutive quarters of double-digit purchase origination growth, and growth overall in the purchase market in 21 of the past 22 quarters,” said Black Knight Data & Analytics Executive Vice President Ben Graboske.
“The $2.1 trillion in first lien mortgages originated throughout the year represented a 17 per cent increase over 2015, stemming from a 22 per cent jump in refinance lending and a 13 per cent increase in purchase loans,” he added.
Purchase lending hit its highest yearly total since 2006 at $1.1 trillion but was 28 per cent below its peak of 2005. The refinance market topped $1 trillion driven by low rates, with a 58 per cent jump in quarter four compared to a year earlier.
Living in the city means $9K premium
Families living in cities pay on average $9,073 more than those in the suburbs.
The additional costs for urban dwellers is revealed in a new report from Zillow and Care.com and covers the cost of basic housing (including mortgage payments and property taxes) and child care costs.
Those living in New York, Chicago and Dallas have the highest gap between urban and suburban; in New York, the difference is an eyewatering $71,237!
"Deciding whether to live in the city or suburbs is a personal choice, but when you do the math, it's easy to see why moving to the suburbs is about more than just a bigger yard – it can also save you a lot of money," says Svenja Gudell, Zillow chief economist.
However, in metros such as Philadelphia and Baltimore the cost of living in the ‘burbs is up to $14,000 higher than city living when factoring in all the costs including childcare for two children.
Fewer will use tax rebate to pay down debt
Tax rebates will be spent on practical things this year rather than vacations or high-ticket items.
A survey by Bankrate.com found that 34 per cent of those getting cash back from the government will invest or save it, 29 per cent will pay bills and 27 per cent will pay down debt.
The percentage planning to cut their debt levels is at the lowest since Bankrate.com began the tax rebate survey in 2010 and has slipped 7 percentage points in two years.
The poll shows that 47 per cent are expecting a rebate, rising to 66 per cent among millennials.