2019 was a great year in the mortgage industry and for mortgage rates.
During the month of October 2019 30 year fixed mortgage rates moved above 5.00%. Following that spike in mortgage rates they improved for the next 9 months. There were some months where mortgage rates moved higher during that time period but for the most part mortgage rates moved lower until late summer 2019. Since then mortgage rates have leveled off and are currently just above there summer time lows. Some months there was higher loan application volume than others but overall it's been a steady stream of clients looking to lock in a low mortgage rate.
2020 will bring some changes to the mortgage industry and as always we will adapt so that we can deliver a great product to our clients.
Positive changes for the mortgage industry:
- Conforming loan amount has been increased to $510,400 and in some counties it's as high as $765,600. This is great news for both homeowners and homebuyers. The higher conforming loan limits in 2020 will allow more people to access some of the lowest rates in the industry at higher loan amounts.
- Processing times are getting better; significantly better. If you haven't purchased a home or refinanced a mortgage in the last 2-3 years you're in for a real surprise. Gone are the days of printing out disclsoures; signing them and then scaning them back to you can email them to your Loan Officer. 100% of all initial disclosures can be signed/dated electronically on smart phone, tablet or regular computer.
- And the best news is that some borrowers won't have to provide any documentation. I know what you're thinking; 2006 has returned! No that's not the case. Some mortgage lenders now will attempt to obtain income documentation directly from your employer.
Downtime until January 2nd:
One of the slowest periods in the mortgage industry is between December 20th and January 1st. People are focused on Christmas and spending time with friends and family. Mortgage lenders are usually short staffed as employees take some time off.
Everything changes once we enter the first full week of January. Applications usually pick up as those who were waiting to move forward finally compelte that application to lock in a rate.
Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays Everyone!