Mortgage Rates: Questioning the Rally


After finally managing to topple “The Wall“, the mortgage rate rally stalled and went sideways last week.

We’d describe this pause as mortgage rates taking a “breather” in the
wake of a 2-month rally. The sideways shuffle seen last week serves as a
reminder of the threats faced by home loan borrowers when floating a
loan on
a short-term timeline. The market doesn’t always act the way you’d
expect it to and rallies don’t last forever. Investors always end up
finding a way to question positive progress, and that generally leads to
an unfriendly directional reaction.

Execution” conventional 30-year fixed mortgage rate is 4.50%.
Aggressive 4.375% quotes are still being reported but will  involve increased
closing costs in the form of origination fees.  This could be worth it
to applicants who
plan to keep their new mortgage outstanding for long enough to breakeven
on the
extra upfront costs.  On FHA/VA 30 year fixed “Best Execution”  is
15 year fixed conventional loans are best priced at 3.75%. Five
year ARMs are best priced at 3.125% but the ARM market is more
stratified and
there is more variation in what will be “Best-Execution” depending on
your individual scenario. 

THE WEEK AHEAD: The week ahead offers key data on second-quarter industrial
production, retail sales, inflation, the housing market, consumer
sentiment, and manufacturing. It also presents an opportunity to
question the positive progress we’ve made over the past two-months. As
illustrated by the sideways behavior of mortgage rates last week, bond
investors are already acting nervous about the end of the Federal
Reserve’s “Quantitative Easing” program (just a few weeks away now). Adding anxious sentiment is the potential for the U.S. to briefly default on its debt if
Congress fails to raise the debt ceiling. From that perspective we feel it’s going to take another round of poor economic data this week to confirm our longer-term bullish mortgage rates bias.

GUIDANCE:   With  “The Wall” now torn down a path has
been paved for mortgage rates to continue on the path toward more
improvements. An extended rally
will not come without setbacks though. Short-term corrections are possible.  That means borrowers working on a shorter
lock/float timeline should remain defensive of their current quotes. While the rally has indeed stalled, we still feel that intermediate to longer-term scenarios
are justified in floating.  But we caution, with the politics of money and banking taking center stage into the summer months, your main goal is to
protect new, lower rate quotes from unexpected market fluctuations. Stay-tuned for further developments….

What MUST be considered BEFORE one thinks about capitalizing on a
rates rally?

   1. WHAT DO YOU NEED? Rates might not rally as much as you
   2. WHEN DO YOU NEED IT BY? Rates might ot rally as fast as you
   3. HOW DO YOU HANDLE STRESS? Are you ready to make tough


“Best Execution” is the most cost efficient combination of
note rate offered and points paid at closing. This note rate is determined
based on the time it takes to recover the points you paid at closing (discount)
vs. the monthly savings of permanently buying down your mortgage rate by
0.125%.  When deciding on whether or not to pay points, the borrower must
have an idea of how long they intend to keep their mortgage. For more info, ask
you originator to explain the findings of their “breakeven analysis”
on your permanent rate buy down costs.

Important Mortgage Rate Disclaimer
: The “Best Execution” loan
pricing quotes shared above are generally seen as the more aggressive
side of
the primary mortgage market. Loan originators will only be able to offer
rates on conforming loan amounts to very well-qualified borrowers who
have a
middle FICO score over 740 and enough equity in their home to qualify
for a
refinance or a large enough savings to cover their down payment and
costs. If the terms of your loan trigger any risk-based loan level
adjustments (LLPAs), your rate quote will be higher. If you do not fall
into the “perfect borrower” category, make sure you ask your loan
for an explanation of the characteristics that make your loan more
expensive. “No point” loan doesn’t mean “no cost” loan. The best 30
year fixed conventional/FHA/VA mortgage rates still include closing
costs such
as: third party fees + title charges + transfer and recording. Don’t
forget the
fiscal frisking that comes along with the underwriting process.

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