Possible Economic Downturn Likely to Be Mild
According to Lawrence Yun, chief economist for the National Association of REALTORS®, the country isn’t officially in a recession yet despite two consecutive quarters of national contraction of the gross domestic product. Several healthy economic trends, including a robust job market, coupled with new efforts to boost affordable housing could stave off a more serious slump, Yun adds. New guidance from the Treasury enabling state and local governments to use leftover emergency COVID-19 funding from the American Rescue Plan to create affordable housing should help ease the inventory crisis and counteract the effects of a tightening economy. Still, there are questions about whether the U.S. has entered “stagflation,” a period of high inflation combined with an economic slowdown, as many Americans feel the frustrating effects of a slower economy and higher consumer prices. But the National Bureau of Economic Research, the council that watches over U.S. business cycles, has yet to declare a recession, Yun notes.
Source and link to the full article: Yun: Possible Economic Downturn Likely to Be Mild | Realtor Magazine
Closing speeds aren’t meeting mortgage borrower expectations
Based on a new Arizent report, as lenders handled record origination volumes in 2021, their clients came through the mortgage process largely satisfied with their experiences. But expectations are growing for a faster, more streamlined process, one which will require far more technology adoption. Closing speeds also stood out as a challenge leading to reduced satisfaction. Almost half of borrowers surveyed said faster closings would have improved their mortgage experience. Consumer expectations of how fast the closing process should be versus the current reality signals a wide disconnect. The same share of those who purchased or refinanced, 64% thought a mortgage should close between one to three weeks. But in mid-2020, the average closing still took more than 40 days, according to data from Freddie Mac.
Source and link to the full article: Closing speeds aren’t meeting mortgage borrower expectations | National Mortgage News
Black Knight’s Optimal Blue adds location-based pricing feature
According to Black Knight, their new Optimal Blue location-based pricing functionality expansion will assist investors and lenders in promoting affordable housing in underserved markets. The new capability automates the process of collecting census tract data to deliver applicable pricing premiums at the time of rate quote. According to Black Knight, the Optimal Blue PPE can support affordable housing in line with the Community Reinvestment Act, which requires the Federal Reserve and other federal banking regulators to encourage financial institutions to help meet the credit needs of communities in which they do business. “This expanded functionality is part of Optimal Blue’s ongoing commitment to provide innovation that addresses the latest needs of the market, as well as the credit needs of low and moderate-income neighborhoods,” said Scott Happ, president of Optimal Blue, a division of Black Knight
Source and link to the full article: Black Knight’s Optimal Blue adds location-based pricing feature – HousingWire
Mortgage Rates Dip: Buyers Get a Second Chance Opportunity
Based on Freddie Mac reports, after weeks of escalating borrowing costs, home buyers are getting a second chance to lock in lower rates. With rates dipping in recent days, mortgage applications are increasing for the first time in several weeks, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported recently. Will the latest lower rates stick around? “Mortgage rates remained volatile due to the tug of war between inflationary pressures and a clear slowdown in economic growth,” says Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist. “The high uncertainty surrounding inflation and other factors will likely cause rates to remain variable, especially as the Federal Reserve attempts to navigate the current economic environment.”
Source and link to the full article: Mortgage Rates Dip Below 5%; Buyers Get ‘A Second-Chance Opportunity’ | Realtor Magazine