How will Fannie Mae’s Collateral Underwriter (CU) impact appraisals?

detctiveOver this weekend (April 18, 2015), Fannie Mae will be releasing the highly anticipated “Collateral Underwriter” (aka CU) to lenders. CU is intended to be a tool for lenders to use to help ensure the quality of appraisals on loans that originated as conventional/Fannie Mae. Fannie Mae’s tagline for CU is “Taking appraisal review to the next level”…many in the industry, from lenders, real estate brokers and appraisers, are a bit anxious over this new “tool”.

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Freddie Mac report reveals lowest mortgage rates of 2014

Every week, Freddie Mac releases their Prime Mortgage Market Survey (PMMS) based on a survey a mix of 125 lenders on what committed mortgage rates and points were during the previous week. Based on Freddie Mac’s report, the average rate for a 30 year fixed rate mortgage averaged 3.80 percent with an average 0.6 points. This is down from last week when it averaged 3.93 percent. A year ago at this time, the 30-year averaged 4.47 percent.

Freddie_Mac_Rate_Dec_18

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2015 Conforming Loan Limits for Washington State

Earlier this month, the FHFA announced the 2015 conforming loan limits for homes located in Washington state. A conforming loan is a conventional loan (ie Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac). Loan amounts that exceed the conforming loan limit are considered jumbo loans (or non-conforming) and have different underwriting guidelines and rates.

The FHFA increased the loan limits in three counties (King, Pierce and Snohomish) effective 2015. All other counties will have the same loan limits as 2014.

2015 Conforming Loan Limits for Homes Located in Washington State

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BREAKING NEWS: 2015 Conforming Loan Limits HIGHER for King, Pierce and Snohomish Counties

I just received notice from FHFA that overall, 2015 loan limits will remain the same for most counties except for a few counties with higher loan limits. In Washington state, the counties with higher loan limits in 2015 are King County, Snohomish County and Pierce County.

2015 Conforming Loan Limits for King, Snohomish and Pierce Counties:

  • One Unit: $517,500 (increased from $506,000)
  • Two Unit: $662,500 (increased from $647,500)
  • Three Unit: $800,800 (increased from $783,000)
  • Four Unit: $995,200 (increased from $973,100)

All other counties in Washington state have the same loan limits as 2014.

Stay tuned for announcements on FHA and VA loan limits for 2015.

Reduced Down Payment Conventional Loans may require Compensating Factors

Mel_WattMel Watt, Director of the FHFA, has released his prepared remarks for the National Association of Realtors Conference. In his remarks, he addresses the lower down payment options that should be available soon with conforming mortgages and that they will require compensating factors.

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Conforming Mortgages set to Reduce Minimum Down Payment

Mel_WattAt the MBA Annual Convention this week, Mel Watt, Director of the FHFA announced that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will be reducing the minimum down payment.

From his prepared speech:

“To increase access for creditworthy but lower-wealth borrowers, FHFA is also working with the Enterprises to develop sensible and responsible guidelines for mortgages with loan-to-value ratios between 95 and 97 percent. [Read more…]

Refinancing after paying cash for your home

MortgagePorterHourGlassHouseThe greater Seattle – Bellevue competitive housing markets have been experiencing a higher amount of buyers paying “all cash” for homes. Refinancing after you’ve paid cash for a home is also referred to as “delayed financing”. Delayed financing may also take place when a person is buying a foreclosed home at auction at the court house. Historically, “all-cash” buyers who want to refinance after closing to re-coup the cash they used to purchase their homes had to wait six months after the purchase before they can do a “cash-out” refi. Now, home buyers who used “all-cash” to buy their home no longer have to wait months to refinance to get their cash back.

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Freddie Mac’s Mortgage Rate Survey reveals some of the lowest mortgage rates of 2014

Today Freddie Mac released their Primary Mortgage Market Survey showing the 30 year fixed rate at some of the lowest levels for this year. Freddie’s PMMS is based on survey of various lenders from rates quoted the previous week and is intended to show consumers what the average rate and points for that rate were last week.

2014-09-04_1205_Freddie_Mac_Mortgage_Rate_Survey

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