Thank you Serge for the 5 Star Review!

17 May

Thank you Serge for the 5 Star Review. The Nichols Team loves helping customers with all their mortgage financing needs. We can’t wait to work with you again!

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

#MortgageBlog

#NicholsTeam

#JulieCNichols

Had a GREAT TIME at the Annual Crawfish boil!

12 May

Had a great time at the GMFS 18th annual crawfish boil in Baton Rouge, LA and I even got an award for being a top producer last year!

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

#MortgageBlog

#BestMortgageLender

#GMFS

#JulieNichols

#NicholsTeam

Mortgage Time

12 May
French Election and U.S. Data
A victory by Macron in the French election was viewed as negative for mortgage rates early in the week, while Friday’s weaker than expected U.S. economic data was positive. These influences were roughly offsetting, and mortgage rates ended the week with little change.
Sunday’s French Presidential election featured one pro-EU candidate, Macron, and one anti-EU candidate, Le Pen. While Macron remained comfortably ahead in the polls, investors still had to consider that an unexpected victory by Le Pen could lead to a French exit from the European Union (EU). Macron did win the election, and investor concerns were eased. They reacted by shifting back to riskier assets such as stocks, and away from safer assets such as mortgage-backed securities, causing a small increase in mortgage rates.

On Friday, a downside miss in key data on inflation and economic activity was good news for mortgage rates. The April core consumer price index (CPI), which excludes the volatile food and energy components, rose 0.1% from March, below the consensus of 0.2%. Core CPI was 1.9% higher than a year ago, down from 2.0% last month and from 2.3% in January.
For most of 2016, inflation appeared to be trending higher, but it has reversed direction so far this year. In addition, retail sales in April rose 0.4% from March, which was a nice improvement from the slight gains seen in March, but it was below the consensus for an increase of 0.6%. Weak consumer spending was a big factor in the slow GDP growth seen during the first quarter.
Looking ahead, it will be a light week for economic data. The NAHB housing confidence index will be released on Monday. Housing Starts and Industrial Production will come out on Tuesday. The Philadelphia Fed regional manufacturing index will be released on Thursday.

>> Read the newsletter online: http://www.mbsquoteline.com/newsletter/view/258/21342/0/3

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

#MortgageBlog

#BestMortgageLender

#GMFS

#JulieNichols

#NicholsTeam

Gallup Poll Shows High Hopes For Homeownership

9 May

Reblogged from Mortgage News Daily – Jann Swanson

While the historically low homeownership rate as reported by the Census Bureau has improved only marginally over the last year, a recent survey by Gallup indicates that it may be on the edge of change. Forty-nine percent of non-homeowners contacted by the polling company in March indicated they expect to buy a home within the next five years, with 10 percent planning on doing so in the next year. An additional 20 percent say they plan on being homeowners within ten years. This leaves only 28 percent with no plans to purchase a home.

Jeffrey M. Jones, who reported the story for Gallup, said these numbers have increased since the last such survey in April 2016 when 38 percent did not plan to buy in the foreseeable future. At that point 41 percent were within the five-year window. Gallup has conducted the survey in four of the last five years.

Those who plan on buying in the near future tend to be young. Of those aged 18 to 34, 52 percent plan to buy within five years as do 58 percent of those aged 35 to 54. An additional 31 percent of the younger cohort expect buy within 10 years, leaving only 14 percent who do not see homeownership in their foreseeable future. Among older non-homeowners, those over 55, only 30 percent have any plans to buy.

Jones said a separate Gallup survey recently found that 61 percent of Americans think housing prices in their area will continue to increase, the highest percentage with that opinion since 2005. He points to lack of available homes as one reason prices have been rising. "The limited number of properties for sale often receive multiple bids from the large number of families seeking houses. That dynamic is raising concerns that certain markets may become overheated." He says the results of the homebuying poll indicates that housing demand will remain strong.

They also indicate there may be constraints on housing supply. Of homeowning adults, only 4 percent expect to sell their existing homes within the year and another 20 percent plan a move within five years. Nearly two-thirds, 64 percent, do not intend to sell within the foreseeable future. Jones says these results are nearly identical to responses in the 2013 survey.

Most U.S. adults who own their home, 64%, do not think they will sell it for the foreseeable future. On the other hand, 20% expect to sell within the next five years, including 4% in the next year, while 13% plan to sell within the next 10 years. These results are nearly identical to what Gallup found when it previously asked this question in 2013.

About half of those who plan to see over the next ten years say they will be downsizing, buying a smaller or less expensive home. Roughly three in 10 say they plan to buy a bigger or more expensive home, while 13 percent will exit homeownership entirely, renting their next residence. Jones says that, not surprisingly, older homeowners planning to sell are more likely to say they will buy a smaller and less expensive house, while younger homeowners are more likely to be looking to purchase a larger home. These results are also similar to what Gallup measured four years ago.

Jones says the survey, while showing that homeownership remains an aspiration for the vast majority of Americans, also indicates that the supply of homes may not keep up with demand; more non-homeowners plan to buy homes in the next five years than homeowners plan to sell homes. The two numbers needn’t match, as the ratio of homeowners to non-homeowners is about three to two, but homeowners who sell will also need new quarters, further adding to the need for housing.

Some of the shortfall in supply can be made up by new construction, Jones says, which might indicate a construction boom is on the horizon, if not already underway. "But if real estate demand continues to outpace real estate supply, home prices will continue to rise and could rise beyond what most Americans can afford. To the extent that happens, many would-be homeowners may not be able to achieve their goal of owning a home."

Gallup conducted its poll by phone with a random sample of 1,526 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. The sample contained both homeowners and non-homeowners and was conducted March 9-29, 2017.

>> Read the original article here: http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/05082017_homeownership.asp

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

#MortgageBlog

#BestMortgageLender

#GMFS

#JulieNichols

#NicholsTeam

Mortgage Time

8 May
Fed Holds Steady
Wednesday’s Fed meeting was viewed as slightly negative for mortgage rates. The success of Macron in holding his lead in the polls for the upcoming French election also was unfavorable. Friday’s Employment report had little impact. As a result, mortgage rates ended the week a little higher.
As expected, the Fed made no change in the federal funds rate at Wednesday’s meeting. There also was no change in the language describing the Fed’s policy for maintaining a steady level for its large portfolio of Treasuries and MBS. According to the statement, Fed officials see the risks to the outlook for economic growth as "roughly balanced," and they expect inflation to climb to its 2.0% target over the medium term. Fed officials think that the weak economic growth seen early this year likely was "transitory." Some investors had hoped that the weaker data over the last couple of months might cause the Fed to consider slowing its pace of tightening. The statement provided no indication of this, however, which was negative for mortgage rates.
The pro-EU candidate in Sunday’s French Presidential election, Macron, cleared his largest remaining hurdle on Wednesday when he performed well in a debate. Over the past week, he has held a lead of roughly 60% to 40% over the anti-EU candidate, Le Pen. After the debate, investors grew less concerned that France could exit the European Union (EU). They reacted by shifting back to riskier assets such as stocks, and away from safer assets such as mortgage-backed securities, causing a slight increase in mortgage rates.

Friday’s important Employment report came in right on target and had little effect on financial markets. Against a consensus forecast of 190K, the economy added 211K jobs in April. The unemployment rate declined from 4.5% to 4.4%, below the consensus forecast, and the lowest level since May 2007.
Looking ahead, the final round of the French Presidential election will take place on Sunday. In the U.S., the big day will be Friday with the Retail Sales and CPI reports. Consumer spending accounts for about 70% of economic output in the U.S., and the retail sales data is a key indicator. The Consumer Price Index (CPI), a widely followed monthly inflation report, looks at the price change for goods and services which are purchased by consumers. In addition, there will be Treasury auctions on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday.

>> Read the newsletter online: http://www.mbsquoteline.com/newsletter/view/257/21342/0/3

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

#MortgageBlog

#BestMortgageLender

#GMFS

#JulieNichols

#NicholsTeam

Don’t take our word for it!

4 May

Don’t take our word for it, read what our customer Bruce Bowman wrote about the Nichols Team and GMFS!

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

#MortgageBlog

#BestMortgageLender

#GMFS

#JulieNichols

#NicholsTeam

May your Journey always lead you home!

2 May

Love your new home? Troy and Corinne sure do! What a great feeling. Thank you for choosing the Nichols Team and GMFS Mortgage. We treasure our repeat customers! Great find Melanie Hartmann with Remax/DFW and congratulations Troy and Corinne!

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

#MortgageBlog

#BestMortgageLender

#GMFS

#JulieNichols

#NicholsTeam

New Home Congratulations!

1 May

New Home Purchases are exciting, especially when just the right location and home is found! Congratulations to Shusmita and Matt and great job Jamuna Thill with Exp Realty who helped them find that home. Thank you for allowing the #NicholsTeam with GMFS Mortgage to hold your financing and best wishes in your new home!

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

#MortgageBlog

#BestMortgageLender

#GMFS

#JulieNichols

#NicholsTeam

Interest rates, falling production and policy weigh on mortgage industry

1 May

Rebogged from Housing Wire – Christopher Whalen

Downbeat mood at MBA Secondary

When asked about the most pressing issues facing the US mortgage industry, participants at the Mortgage Bankers Association Secondary Market Conference refer to a familiar worry list. Chief among them is the aggressive action from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which one large seller servicer says has changed its approach to the mortgage industry not at all since the election of Donald Trump.

“These people at the CFPB have no idea how our industry works and they do not appear to care,” the top-ten seller/servicer said. “They only thing that the CFPB seems to be interested in achieving is levying penalties and issuing enforcement actions. How can we invest in new technology and systems if nobody in the loan servicing sector is making money?”

One bright spot noted by several market participants is that with PHH Corp, Quicken and now Ocwen all fighting the CFPB in court, the mortgage industry seems to be shedding its reluctance to fight excessive regulation. Many participants expect to see significant changes at the CFPB once its director Richard Cordray departs, but until then it is “business as ususual,” according to an official of a large bank aggregator.

One major concern among mortgage bankers is the direction of interest rates for the duration of 2017. The sharp rise in the 10-year Treasury following last year’s election has dramatically slowed new loan originations, causing many seller/servicers to lay off staff focused on mortgage refinancing volumes. Most participants said that the 10-year Treasury would need to go down to 2% or lower before refinancing volumes would really come back.

Another related topic is the state of the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) market in the wake of last year’s changes to the Ginnie Mae acknowledgement agreement. Many market participants welcomed the change, but they note that the basic posture of the FHA when it comes to reimbursement of advances, for example, has not really changed significantly.

“There is a reason why there are so few bidders for GNMA servicing,” one veteran industry observer said. “Until the federal government starts to address some of the concerns of servicers and investors, the poor liquidity in the market for GNMA servicing is unlikely to change.” And more than several MBA Secondary participants expressed concerns that we will see more smaller servicers exiting the GNMA market this year.

With the MBA estimating just $500 billion in refinancing transactions in 2017 compared with $900 billion last year, the projected 10% growth in purchase loan originations to $1.1 trillion in 2017 will not nearly take up the slack, say conference participants. “All of the parts of the industry food chain are working extra hard to fill up the production pipeline,” notes one bank aggregator. “The GSEs continue to be at a disadvantage compared with GNMA execution.”

One topic that virtually nobody raises as a priority for 2017 is GSE reform, the subject of an extensive paper by the MBA and a panel at the conference. While virtually everyone asked would like to see the situation with the GSEs sitting in conservatorship resolved, none are seeking a fundamental change in how the conforming market functions. Generating business is the top priority of most attendees at the MBA this year, a stark change from the comfortable position that many firm’s had in terms of production this time last year.

Last week President Trump announced he intends to nominate Pam Patenaude to be Deputy Secretary of HUD, a move that drew some measure of relief from MBA Secondary attendees. The question of who will be tapped to lead GNMA is front of mind for many industry players, however.

Regulatory reform is another hot topic at the top of the list of conference attendees. House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX), has formally introduced his bill to the new Congress, H.R. 10, which is version 2.0 of the Financial CHOICE Act.

The legislation would restructure the CFPB by taking away its supervisory functions and allowing the president to fire its director at will, and contains MBA-supported legislation to permit transitional licensing under the SAFE Act as well as higher tolerances for points and fees under the Qualified Mortgage rule.

One rising topic for MBA participants is M&A, as many non-bank seller/servicers have put themselves up for sale. Given the volatility of the financial markets and particularly interest rates, getting a good read on where agency or government servicing assets should be changing hands is not easy.

Despite claims early in the year that the mortgage for mortgage servicing rights had settled down, in fact the bid-offer spread for GNMA MSRs remains extremely wide, from the mid-two times range in terms of cash flow multiples into four times. For most non-bank firms, the MSR is the only significant capital asset.

“If you want a good barometer for change in the mortgage industry, just watch spreads on agency and GNMA servicing in the secondary market,” notes one bank servicer. “When the spreads come in, then folks in Washington will know that they are headed in the right direction with reform.”

>> Read the original article here: http://www.housingwire.com/blogs/1-rewired/post/40008-interest-rates-falling-production-and-policy-weigh-on-mortgage-industry

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

#MortgageBlog

#BestMortgageLender

#GMFS

#JulieNichols

#NicholsTeam

Homebuyer demand suddenly falling off as inventory keeps shrinking

26 Apr

Reblogged from CNBC – Diana Olick

The story has been the same for a while — high buyer demand plus a short supply of homes for sale equals higher home prices and plenty of buyer frustration.

It may be the strongest seller’s market ever, but buyer frustration is now taking its toll. Some would-be shoppers are even choosing to sit the spring market out.

Demand from homebuyers fell 14 percent in March from February, according to Redfin, a national real estate brokerage. Redfin measures demand by looking at the number of customers requesting home tours and writing offers.

Demand had hit a record in January, as consumers felt better about the economy and anticipated a strong spring market. They clearly did not anticipate how few homes they’d find for sale.

Compared with February, the seasonally adjusted number of buyers requesting tours fell 5.5 percent in March, and the number of buyers writing offers dropped nearly 23 percent.

It’s not that Americans don’t want to buy homes, it’s that there are just too few homes for sale. Across the 15 metros covered by Redfin’s index, there were 12.5 percent fewer homes for sale than in March 2016. Inventory has now been falling annually for 22-straight months.

"The market is missing its moment because of too-low inventory," said Redfin chief economist Nela Richardson. "Low unemployment rates and high consumer confidence should create continued momentum in homebuyer demand. But, instead, we’re seeing demand cooling when it should be peaking."

The drop in demand is also showing up in mortgage applications to purchase a home, perhaps the most current indicator of housing demand. These applications are less than 1 percent higher than they were a year ago. At the same time last year, mortgage purchase applications were up around 17 percent annually.

At a recent Sunday open house in Burbank, California, buyer frustration permeated the event.

"I’m a little nervous about it. I’m intimidated," said Lena Araradie, a renter who said all of the homes in desirable areas were going quickly and far above asking price. She is looking at homes about $40,000 under her budget because she knows she will likely get in a bidding war.

Fellow shopper Jilbert Mosessian has already lost out on three different properties.

"We’re pretty much walking away from our prime neighborhood where we’ve been for awhile as a renter, so [we’re] considering other areas and also cutting from our expectations," Mosessian said.

So far, even the jump in new spring listings is not helping the supply situation. What comes on the market goes very quickly.

"For this reason, we think the 2017 market will be a late bloomer, with new listings coming on later in the year and sales peaking in the early fall, instead of summer," said Redfin’s Richardson.

>> View the original article here: http://www.cnbc.com/2017/04/26/homebuyer-demand-suddenly-falling-off-as-inventory-keeps-shrinking.html?__source=realestate%7Cnews%7C&par=realestate

The views expressed are my own and do not necessarily reflect the views of my employer.

Visit my website at: www.juliecnichols.com or contact me with any of your home loan questions.

#MortgageBlog

#BestMortgageLender

#GMFS

#JulieNichols

#NicholsTeam