Locking vs. Floating Your Mortgage Rate

To mortgage folk across the country, it’s an age-old question: “Lock or float?” It’s a question loan officers and mortgage brokers get asked on a daily basis, often over and over again by panicked borrowers and first-time home buyers. And it might just be the most important answer a homeowner will come up with during [&hellip

The post Locking vs. Floating Your Mortgage Rate first appeared on The Truth About Mortgage.

Source: thetruthaboutmortgage.com

When Are Mortgage Rates Lowest?

We’re all looking for an angle, especially if it’ll save us some money. Whether it’s a stock market trend, a home price trend, or a mortgage rate trend, someone always claims to have unlocked the code. Unfortunately, it’s usually all nonsense, or predicated on the belief that what happened in the past will occur again [&hellip

The post When Are Mortgage Rates Lowest? first appeared on The Truth About Mortgage.

Source: thetruthaboutmortgage.com

6 Myths That Are Costing You Money on Gas

6 Myths That Are Costing You Money on Gas

Restarting Your Engine Uses More Gas than Idling

If you are waiting for longer than 30 seconds in your car, turn off the engine. You use more fuel idling after 30 seconds than you use to restart your car.

Your Car Needs to Warm Up in Winter

If you have a newer car, you can skip the long warm-ups, even in winter! Today’s cars are designed to warm up while being driven, so after you give the car 30–60 seconds of idling time, you can be on your way—just take it easy for the first few minutes on the road. You’ll save both time and gas!

Seat Warmers Waste Energy

Heated seats in your car may seem like a luxury, but they can actually be a huge money-saver. Heated seats don’t have to use as much energy (that is, gas) as your car’s heating vents to keep you warm. If they aren’t offered when you buy your car, consider getting a heated pad for your seat or even having heated seats installed after-market.

Changing Your Oil Less Frequently Saves You Money

Change your oil regularly and you’ll have to fill up on gas less often. As oil ages, it gets thicker and harder to push through the engine, causing more energy to be used. By changing your oil regularly, you’ll make sure you get the best fuel economy possible.

Premium Gas Makes Your Car Run Better

Only 5 percent of cars actually run better on premium gas as opposed to regular. Make sure to check your owner’s manual to see what it recommends.

“Topping Off” is Worthwhile

Have you ever “topped off” your car’s gas tank to round out the price at the pump? You should know that since the pump is only pumping out vapors at that point, they’re automatically sucked back into gas station’s tank. In other words, even though you now have exact change, you didn’t get any extra gas!

For more easy ways to take care of your car, follow our Car Tips board on Pinterest. And don’t forget to sign up for our newsletter and follow us on Facebook and Instagram!

Image courtesy of Shutterstock.

Source: quickanddirtytips.com

Current Mortgage Rates Stay Lower on Monday

We saw mortgage rates dip a little lower on Friday after trouble in Turkey led financial market participants to seek out the perceived safety of long-term government bonds.

Mortgage rates are expected to stay close to current levels this week, but we could see some movement after a few key economic reports get released. Read on for more details.

Where are mortgage rates going?                                            

Rates hold lower to start the week

It’s a quiet start to the week as there are no significant economic reports scheduled for release. That’s keeping long-term government bond yields, which dropped due to an increased demand on Friday after trouble for Turkey’s lira, down near three week lows.

The yield on the 10-year Treasury note (the best market indicator of where mortgage rates are going) is currently at 2.88%. That’s basically flat on the day and about six basis points lower from where it was this time last week.

The expectation for this week is the same as it’s been for quite some time, and that’s for current mortgage rates to stay close to present levels. The fact that rates have remained in a tight range all summer (and most of spring) really isn’t the worst thing for borrowers, as many forecasters had expected rates to rise higher than they are now by this time.

The pressure isn’t off quite yet, though, as it is widely anticipated that the Federal Reserve will increase the nation’s benchmark interest rate, the federal funds rate, by at least a quarter-point by the time 2019 rolls around.

According to the CME Group’s Fed Funds futures, there is a 96.0% chance that the federal funds rate will go up a little over a month from now at the FOMC’s September meeting.

That would push the target range up a quarter-point to 2.00%-2.25%. There is still a lot of time between now and December, but at the moment the majority of analysts believe another rate hike will take place then, pushing the fed funds target range up to 2.50%-2.75%.

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Rate/Float Recommendation                                  

Lock now before move even higher     

With mortgage rates expected to rise in the coming months, we believe the prudent decision for most borrowers is to lock in a rate sooner rather than later. The longer you wait, the more likely it is that you’ll get a higher rate and pay more interest on your purchase or refinance.

Learn what you can do to get the best interest rate possible.  

Today’s economic data:           

  • Nothing out today.

Notable events this week:     

Monday:   

  • Nothing

Tuesday:   

  • NFIB Small Business Optimism Index
  • Import and Export Prices

Wednesday:         

  • Retail Sales
  • Empire State Mfg Survey
  • Productivity and Costs
  • Industrial Production

Thursday:     

  • Housing Starts
  • Jobless Claims
  • Philly Fed Business Outlook Survey

Friday:          

  • Consumer Sentiment

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*Terms and conditions apply.

Source: totalmortgage.com

A 3% mortgage rate may be the new norm

For the third consecutive week, mortgage rates pushed past 3% – with the average mortgage rate for a 30-year fixed loan up four basis points last week to 3.09%, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey.

Rising mortgage rates typically signify a recovering economy, and despite applications for mortgages dropping week-over-week, Freddie Mac’s chief economist Sam Khater expects a 3% rate to sustain market interest for many potential buyers.

A number of economists say rising rates may just be what the industry needs to cool the insane housing demand the market has been struggling to maintain for months. Increased inventory was the initial hope. However, due to consistent materials supply shortages and lumber prices that are up about 200% since April 2020, builders’ confidence index dropped in March. Single-family housing starts declined last month.

“The elevated price of lumber is adding approximately $24,000 to the price of a new home,” said NAHB Chairman Chuck Fowke. â€œThough builders continue to see strong buyer traffic, recent increases for material costs and delivery times, particularly for softwood lumber, have depressed builder sentiment this month. Policymakers must address building material supply chain issues to help the economy sustain solid growth in 2021.”

Now, economists are keeping a watchful eye on the speed in which interest rates have risen, said Doug Duncan, Fannie Mae’s senior vice president and chief economist.

“Underlying Treasury rates have risen, though lenders have absorbed some of the rise by shrinking spreads, as confirmed by our recent Mortgage Lender Sentiment Survey results,” said Duncan. “While the rate rise will curtail refinances to some degree, 2021 is poised to be a good year overall for housing activity and housing finance, as the economy continues to recover and COVID-19 restrictions ease.”

Duncan said Fannie Mae is watching for risks around monetary and fiscal policy on interest rates moving forward, though none are an immediate threat as the Federal Reserve has not changed its FOMC statement for several months.

Nevertheless, mortgage rates remain near historic lows (they are still 0.8 percentage points below the 2019 average), but if the price of housing can’t cool in time, many first-time homebuyers may miss the chance to take out a record low rate. Despite this risk, Fannie Mae’s baseline view is that the recent rapid rise will not continue but that rates will drift only modestly higher over the remainder of this year.

“Essentially, we believe the Fed will keep policy accommodative for longer, not tightening until inflation clearly exceeds its 2.0-percent target for a substantial period,” Fannie Mae said. “This view is consistent with current market measures, such as Fed Funds futures, not anticipating any rate hikes until 2023 and, even then, at a slow pace.”

The post A 3% mortgage rate may be the new norm appeared first on HousingWire.

Source: housingwire.com

Home sellers are feeling good about 2021

Home sellers are chomping at the bit. As the economy reopens, vaccinations continue to roll out and stimulus checks reach bank accounts across America, home sellers are increasingly optimistic.

And despite fierce bidding wars, competition from institutional investors and sore wrists from writing dozens of heartfelt letters to home sellers, even buyers are growing in courage these days.

Fannie Mae’s Home Purchase Sentiment Index (HPSI), a composite index designed to track the housing market and consumer confidence to sell or buy a home, increased in March by 5.2 points to 81.7.

Four of the HPSI’s six components increased month over month, including the components related to homebuying and home selling conditions, household income, and home prices. The mortgage rate outlook component experienced the only decline in March’s HPSI, with the latest results indicating that only 6% of consumers believe that mortgage rates will decrease over the next 12 months.

Fannie Mae Senior Vice President and Chief Economist Doug Duncan said the March HPSI increase reflects consumer optimism toward the housing market and the economy in general.


Real estate agents and LOs: the great collaboration

Technology has given consumers the power of choice and expedited the entire real estate purchasing process. Successful agents, brokerages and loan officers of the future are going to rely significantly on technology to find, nurture and engage with buyers and home sellers while also playing an expanding role as personal advisors.

Presented by: Propertybase

“There might even more intensity this year, since 2020’s spring homebuying season was limited by virus-related lockdowns,” Duncan said. “Home-selling sentiment experienced positive momentum across most consumer segments, nearly reaching pre-pandemic levels and generally indicative of a strong home seller’s market.”

Duncan added that home sellers are citing high home prices and tight inventory as primary reasons why it’s a good time to sell.

“Alternatively, while the net ‘good time to buy’ component increased month over month, it has not recovered to pre-pandemic levels, as the homebuying experience continues to prove difficult for many of the same reasons,” he said.

(The percentage of respondents who say it is a good time to buy a home increased from 48% to 53%, while the percentage who say it is a bad time to buy decreased from 43% to 40%.)

Mortgage applications decreased 2.2%, according to the March 31 report from the Mortgage Bankers Association. However, purchase activity during the last week of March was up 6% year-over-year, with the unadjusted purchase index 39% higher than the same week one year prior.

That’s largely reflected in the HPSI. The percentage of respondents who believe it is a good time to sell a home increased from 55% to 61%, while the percentage who say it’s a bad time to sell decreased from 35% to 28%.

The percentage of respondents who believe home prices will go up in the next 12 months increased from 47% to 50%, while the percentage who say home prices will go down decreased from 18% to 14%. The share who think home prices will stay the same remained unchanged at 29%.

Only a handful of people thought mortgage rates would tick down in the next year, at 6%, a decrease from 8% the prior month. Mortgage rates are officially out of the 2% range homebuyers were taking advantage of in 2020, with the most recent report showing rates at 3.27% for a vanilla 30-year fixed mortgage.

Higher rates aside, consumers seem to be feeling better about the economy, as the percentage of respondents who say their household income is significantly higher than it was 12 months ago increased from 17% to 25%, while the percentage who say their household income is significantly lower decreased from 19% to 15%. The percentage who say their household income is about the same decreased from 61% to 56%.

Likewise, the percentage of respondents who are not concerned about losing their job in the next 12 months remained unchanged at 82%, while the percentage who say they are concerned also remained unchanged at 17%.

The post Home sellers are feeling good about 2021 appeared first on HousingWire.

Source: housingwire.com

Mortgage Rate vs. APR: What to Watch For

It’s time for another mortgage match-up: “Mortgage rate vs. APR.” If you’re shopping for real estate or looking to refinance, and you’ve seen a certain mortgage rate advertised, you may have noticed a second, similar percentage adjacent to or below that interest rate, possibly in smaller, fine print. But why? Well, one is the mortgage [&hellip

The post Mortgage Rate vs. APR: What to Watch For first appeared on The Truth About Mortgage.

Source: thetruthaboutmortgage.com

21 Things That Can Drive Your Mortgage Rate Higher

Wondering why you didn’t receive the low mortgage rate you saw advertised on TV or the Internet? Well, there are a ton of reasons why the quote you obtained was higher than anticipated. Let’s explore a lot of them so you can actually get your paws on that low rate. 1. Low credit score This [&hellip

The post 21 Things That Can Drive Your Mortgage Rate Higher first appeared on The Truth About Mortgage.

Source: thetruthaboutmortgage.com

Why You May Want to Switch Mortgage Companies

Loyalty? Not in the mortgage business. That is, if you actually want to save money on your home loan. A few years back, an HSBC survey revealed that 52% of U.S. homeowners “switched providers” (sorry, they’re British) when obtaining subsequent mortgages. This was mainly driven (53%) by the desire to get a better deal, aka [&hellip

The post Why You May Want to Switch Mortgage Companies first appeared on The Truth About Mortgage.

Source: thetruthaboutmortgage.com

15-Year Fixed Mortgage Rates Just Hit Record Lows: Should You Consider One?

While 30-year fixed mortgage rates tend to steal all the headlines, 15-year fixed mortgage rates quietly reached record lows this week as well, per Freddie Mac’s weekly survey. This morning, Freddie announced that the 30-year fixed fell to a new record low 2.65%, down from 2.67% last week. That was the first record low of [&hellip

The post 15-Year Fixed Mortgage Rates Just Hit Record Lows: Should You Consider One? first appeared on The Truth About Mortgage.

Source: thetruthaboutmortgage.com