Mortgage Application Activity Inches Up Slightly

WRE News May 16, 2024


Mortgage Application Activity Inches Up Slightly

Mortgage applications activity recorded a very mild upswing last week, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA).

The Market Composite Index, the MBA’s of mortgage loan application volume, increased by 0.5% on a seasonally adjusted basis for the week ending May 10 compared to one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the index recorded a 0.3% uptick.

Both the seasonally adjusted and the unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 2% from one week earlier – the latter was also 14% lower than the same week one year ago.

The Refinance Index increased 5% from the previous week and was 7% higher than the same week one year ago. The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to 32% of total applications from 30.6% the previous week.

Among the federal programs, the FHA share of total applications decreased to 12.4% from 12.9% the week prior while the VA share of total applications increased to 12.7% from 11.7% and the USDA share of total applications remained unchanged at 0.4%.

Separately, the MBA also released data showing mortgage applications for new home purchases in April increased 22.1% from one year earlier. On a month-over-month basis, applications increased by 2%.  percent. This change does not include any adjustment for typical seasonal patterns.

The MBA estimated new single-family home sales were running at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 699,000 units in April, up 13.7% from the March pace of 615,000 units.  On an unadjusted basis, MBA estimated that there were 62,000 new home sales in April, up 3.3% from 60,000 new home sales in March.

The average loan size for new homes saw a scant uptick from $405,400 in March to $405,490 in April. Conventional loans accounted for 62.8% of applications while FHA loans composed 26.3%, VA loans accounted for 10.5% and RHS/USDA loans were only 0.3%.

Joel Kan, MBA’s vice president and deputy chief economist, observed, “There continues to be healthy demand for new homes, given greater availability and other benefits over existing home purchases such as builder concessions and customization options. First-time homebuyers account for a growing share of purchase applications with the FHA share of applications at 26.3% in April, higher than the survey average of 18% dating back to 2013.”

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