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Mortgage rates hold firm for Monday

June 25,2017
by admin


Multiple closely watched mortgage rates were unchanged today. The average rates on 30-year fixed and 15-year fixed mortgages remained steady. The average rate on 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages, or ARMs, the most popular type of variable rate mortgage, fell.

Rates for mortgages change daily, but they remain much lower overall than they were before the Great Recession. If you’re in the market for a mortgage, it may be a great time to lock in a rate. Just make sure you shop around first.

Compare mortgage rates in your area now.

30-year fixed mortgages

The average rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage is 3.80 percent, unchanged over the last seven days. A month ago, the average rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage was higher, at 3.81 percent.

At the current average rate, you’ll pay principal and interest of $465.96 for every $100,000 you borrow.

You can use Bankrate’s mortgage calculator to figure out your monthly payments and see the effect of adding extra payments. It will also help you calculate how much interest you’ll pay over the life of the loan.

15-year fixed mortgages

The average 15-year fixed-mortgage rate is 3.02 percent, unchanged from a week ago.

Monthly payments on a 15-year fixed mortgage at that rate will cost around $692 per $100,000 borrowed. That may squeeze your monthly budget than a 30-year mortgage would, but it comes with some big advantages: You’ll come out several thousand dollars ahead over the life of the loan in total interest paid and build equity much more quickly.

5/1 ARMs

The average rate on a 5/1 ARM is 3.13 percent, down 3 basis points from a week ago.

These types of loans are best for those who expect to sell or refinance before the first or second adjustment. Rates could be substantially higher when the loan first adjusts, and thereafter.

Monthly payments on a 5/1 ARM at 3.13 percent would cost about $429 for each $100,000 borrowed over the initial five years, but could increase by hundreds of dollars afterward, depending on the loan’s terms.

Where rates are headed

To see where Bankrate’s panel of experts expect rates to go from here, check out our Rate Trend Index.

Want to see where rates are right now? See local mortgage rates.

Average mortgage rates
Product Rate Change Last week
30-year fixed 3.80% N/C 3.80%
15-year fixed 3.02% N/C 3.02%
30-year fixed jumbo 4.23% N/C 4.23%
30-year fixed refinance 3.78% N/C 3.78%
Last updated: June 26, 2017.

Methodology: The rates you see above are Site Averages. These calculations are run after the close of the previous business day and include rates and/or yields we have collected that day for a specific banking product. site averages tend to be volatile — they help consumers see the movement of rates day to day. The institutions included in the “ Site Average” tables will be different from one day to the next, depending on which institutions’ rates we gather on a particular day for presentation on the site.

To learn more about the different rate averages Bankrate publishes, see “Understanding Bankrate’s Rate Averages.”

At Home With Diversity Certification

June 23,2017
by admin

A ground breaking professional education initiative designed to provide America’s real estate professionals with training and tools to expand their business as well as home ownership opportunities for more Americans. Participants will learn about the people who make up the local market, their values, customs, real estate needs, and expectations of real estate professionals. Specifically, the course helps participants develop skills in cross-cultural communication and strategic business planning.

*There will be a 30 minute lunch from 12:30 – 1 p.m.

Date: Thursday, July 20

Time: 9 a.m – 4 p.m.

Location: HAR Central

Cost: $99

Sign Up HERE Today

Source: Houston Association of REALTORS®

Rates Cap Impressively Sideways Week Near Long-Term Lows

June 23,2017
by admin

Weeks like this are the reason that some mortgage rate analysis is only done once a week. There haven’t been any significant developments in financial markets–at least not as far as bonds (which dictate rates) have been concerned. And there certainly hasn’t been any significant movement in mortgage rates themselves. In fact, with the exception of a modest dip last Wednesday, mortgage rates have been essentially flat for the entire month of June.

As we’ve discussed all week, being “flat” at current levels is a good thing considering lenders continue quoting conventional 30yr fixed rates in a range from 3.875% to 4.0% on top tier scenarios. Almost any borrower will have seen the exact same interest rate quote throughout June. Any detectable variation has come in the form of upfront costs. These adjustments are typically minimal, and equate to 0.01-0.02% in terms of effective interest rate. Bottom line, while only June 14th can claim the title of “best day for rates in over 8 months,” everything else has been strikingly close for more than 3 weeks now.

Movement potential increases next week. Risk-averse clients are well within their right to prefer locking, given the nearness to long-term lows. Risk-tolerant clients can afford to wait and see if next week’s economic data ends up helping rates break lower through this extended floor.

Today’s Most Prevalent Rates

  • 30YR FIXED – 3.875-4.00
  • FHA/VA – 3.5-3.75%
  • 15 YEAR FIXED – 3.125-3.25%
  • 5 YEAR ARMS – 2.75 – 3.25% depending on the lender

Ongoing Lock/Float Considerations

  • Investors were relatively convinced that the decades-long trend toward lower rates had been permanently reversed after Trump became president, but such a conclusion would require YEARS to truly confirm

  • Instead of continuing higher in 2017, rates instead formed a narrow, sideways range, and held inside until April. Investor perceptions are shifting such that fiscal reforms and other policy developments will need to live up to expectations in order to push rates higher. Geopolitical risks would also need to avoid flaring up (more than they already have)
  • For the first time since the election, we’re in a rate environment where you wouldn’t be crazy not to lock at every little opportunity/improvement. Until/unless it’s broken, the highest rates of early-2017 mark the ceiling, and we’re now waiting to see how much lower we can go from here.
  • Rates discussed refer to the most frequently-quoted, conforming, conventional 30yr fixed rate for top tier borrowers among average to well-priced lenders. The rates generally assume little-to-no origination or discount except as noted when applicable. Rates appearing on this page are “effective rates” that take day-to-day changes in upfront costs into consideration.

MBS RECAP: Quietest Day of The Week Despite Several Interesting Tidbits

June 23,2017
by admin

We’ve been watching the intraday trading ranges in bond markets to keep an eye on just how flat things have been in the wake of last Wednesday’s big trading day (due to econ data and the Fed). “Inside day” is a term that comes up when things are this flat. It refers to a day’s trading range falling “inside” the previous day’s range.

This week has been notable in that Tuesday and Friday were both inside days. That’s particularly striking today as it required a narrow trading range of a mere 2.44bps (2.142 – 2.166).

Adding to the intrigue is the fact that there were a few tradeable headlines–especially from Fed speakers who seemed to be singing more dovish tunes on the prospect for inflation to frustrate the policy path. Then again, the grudgingly slow admission of economic reality among Fed members is one of the reasons rates are “hanging out” in this low range in the first place.

Markets want to see if a more robust slate of economic data casts a more decisive vote to break this floor or bounce. Next week’s line-up might be enough, especially given the just-announced Yellen speech on the 27th.

Texas Residential Leasing Specialist (TRLS) Course

June 22,2017
by admin

Day one will cover the following topics:

The Essentials of Residential Leasing (#30980), which will provide the licensee with the core competencies they need in their role and responsibilities when functioning as a property manager or leasing agent;

Agency Issues Impacting Property Managers and Leasing Agents (#30979), where Realtors® will learn how agency is established and to distinguish between the various kinds of agency relationships;

Day 2 will cover the following topics:

Marketing and Leasing Residential Properties (#30981), which will provide the licensee with the core competencies they need in their role and responsibilities when functioning as a property manager or leasing agent;

The TAR Residential Lease Agreement (#30982), which is designed to keep the real estate licensee compliant and properly executing the basic fundamentals of leasing representation, property management and their role in that process.

Date: July 17-18

Time: 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Location: HAR Central

Cost: $149

Please Sign Up HERE Today

Source: Houston Association of REALTORS®

Diversity Not Destined to Dampen Homeownership

June 22,2017
by admin

The final installment of a series of working papers produced by the University of Southern California (USC), in partnership with Fannie Mae, looks at the decade-spanning 10-point plunge in the homeownership rate of young Americans. Homeownership has declined, starting even before the housing crisis, across nearly all age groups, but has been most notable for those aged 25 to 44.

Prior papers in the series have looked at the role two factors play in increasing young-adult homebuying; parental financial support, and receipt of a bachelor’s degree. A third paper found that the correlates of homeownership varied under different credit and economic conditions.

The study attempted to simulate how future changes in the characteristics of young adults might affect changes in their homeownership rate over the next 20 years, with particular emphasis on the effects of increases in racial and ethnic diversity and alternative scenarios for college education. The study also simulates a policy scenario in which racial disparities in education are eliminated and a second one in which income and wealth gaps are closed and looks at both under both the more “normal” conditions of housing supply and credit access between 1999 and 2001, and the more homeownership-constrained “post-crisis” conditions of 2009 to 2013.

Demographic changes have been substantial and are expected to continue from 2015 to 2035. Households are becoming more diverse, particularly among the young adults who are the subject of this study. The non-Hispanic white (white) share of the total 25 to 44 age group is expected to decline from 57.2 percent in 2015 to 48.4 percent in 2035, and this decline will be matched by the white share of all householders in this age group, from 59.2 percent to 51.5 percent.

As racial and ethnic minorities have historically lagged whites in homeownership rates, it is assumed the growing diversity will bring down those rates overall. In 2015 white homeownership was 58.4 percent against 35.3 percent for Hispanics and 28.1 percent among African-Americans. Asian homeownership is also lower, at 45.1 percent. If the homeownership rate for each racial subgroup is held constant at the 2015 level, the growing diversity would produce an overall homeownership rate for the age group of 48.2 percent, down 0.6 from the current level.

Homeownership rates have always been higher among the older cohorts, largely because older people have had more time to become homeowners, but the gaps between generations have widened recently, and the current group of young adults are tracking 10 percent below the homeownership rates of those groups a decade ago. Granted the 2005 rates were buoyed by easy credit and an adequate housing supply while those in 2015 were weighed down by opposite conditions so some degree of catch-up may happen.

The Millennials, are the largest generation in history with 4.39 million members per single year of age, compared to 4.11 million for Gen Xers and 3.96 million for Baby Boomers. Size interacts with the different homeownership rates to generate very large differences in the actual numbers of homeowners in the different generations. This makes the success of Millennials in attaining homeownership is of growing importance because the Baby Boomers, and the smaller generation that precedes them, have either reached or are nearing an age when they will become net home sellers instead of buyers. Assuming Boomers follow the same homeownership patterns of past generations, there will be large numbers of homes released to the market over the next two decades. Will there be a commensurately large increase in the number of younger buyers to absorb those homes?

Earlier USC/Fannie Mae papers found education had a large positive association with homeownership and a stronger impact on African-American populations than on white ones. (Sample sizes limited conclusions regarding other ethnic groups.) While educational attainment has been rising steadily among younger householders the gap between Hispanics and other groups has persisted and even widened in the last decade, even as the Hispanic share of the population has been growing.

Previous papers looked at the impact of the Great Recession on young adults homebuying and in this current one looked at the pre- and post-availability of credit. Suffice it to say they conclude that, adjusting for house price differences, households with identical characteristics were more credit-constrained and were substantially less likely to purchase homes after the financial crisis compared with pre-crisis period and educational attainment became more important. “Given that homeownership rates fell substantially in the latter period, the positive effects of higher education are interpreted as having prevented even greater declines in homeownership attainment.”

To determine the outlook for homeownership rates among young adults even as future credit availability and housing market conditions remain highly uncertain as well as that population’s employment and income prospects, the study simulated alternative scenarios for key conditions that shape homeownership outcomes. Those simulations are focused on the effects of college educational attainment and project forward to 2035.

Possible changes are represented two ways; one continues the baseline trends in attainment for each race/ethnic group between 1995 and 2015. The second assumes that policy intervention causes the attainment of blacks and Hispanics to converge with the projected attainment of whites.

There We estimate four alternative scenarios, each of which is tested under market contexts duplicating demand, supply, and credit access of 1999 to 2001 (normal period) and from 2009 to 2013 (post crisis).

1. Education, income, and wealth are held at current levels within each race/ethnic group.

2. Recent educations trends within each group are assumed to continue and income and wealth moves in historic pattern with that education.

3. Education gaps between whites and other groups close entirely, while income/wealth changes follow as in Scenario 3.

4. All education, income, and wealth gaps close.

As expected, Scenario 1 suggests that homeownership rates for young adults will fall over the next ten years as racial/ethnic diversity increases. However, the decline is only 0.7 to 0.9 percentage point for the “normal” and “post-crisis” market contexts respectively.

Under Scenario 2, where education continues to trend at current rates and bring with it increases in wealth and income, the research found that diversity would not decrease homeownership. Instead, for the normal and post-crisis contexts there were increases of 1.3 percent and 1.7 percent respectively. Homeownership rates are predicted to increase slightly more using post-crisis estimates because they were more sensitive to changes in education levels during the 2009-2013 period than in the earlier, normal market period.

Scenario 3 presumes a policy of new investments in education. The resulting elevated attainment would bring minority’s attainment to the level of white households, and bring income and wealth along in keeping with their historic relationship. Under the two market contexts, homeownership rates would increase by 2.4 to 2.9 percentage points, approximately double the increase projected without changes in educational policy.

Finally, Scenario 4, bringing all groups equal in education, wealth, and income, increased the homeownership rate of young households increases by 6.2 to 6.7 percentage points. There is an intergenerational aspect to wealth building, so this scenario is unlikely to happen, still it is instructive to note how much homeownership rates might increase. The researchers say the results from Scenario 4 may illustrate the upper bound of the changes in homeownership and that it is worth noting that, under Scenarios 2, 3, and 4, rising levels of education, income, and wealth are more important under the tighter market context.

Scenario 1 did indicate that the homeownership rate of young adults would decline slightly over the next 20 years because of increasing diversity, but the researchers argue this is the wrong scenario to consider. Because education levels of racial and ethnic minorities have been rising steadily, and because income and wealth tend to increase with higher education levels, they expect homeownership to rise for these groups. In summary, completely closing the educational gaps would result in a future increase in homeownership of roughly 2.5 percentage points and if all differences in education, income, and wealth are erased, the increase would be between 6.0 and 7.0 percentage points.

These simulations reinforce the series’ earlier conclusions that showed the key role of a college education in achieving homeownership and that rising educational attainment among minorities outweighs the assumed negative effect of growing diversity.

Even the most optimistic scenario, number 4, would not completely reverse the more than 10-point decline in young-adult homeownership since the onset of the housing bust – and this is true even in a more “normal” housing context such as existed before the housing bubble. The authors speculate that, were the post-crisis market conditions to return to the “normal” conditions, especially those dealing with credit access, it would raise homeownership levels more than if it were possible to raise educational, income, and wealth levels.

The authors of the study conclude that, whether intervention is in the form of closing interracial gaps or changing policies more directly related to housing, i.e. down payment assistance, increased supply, or expanding credit access, “The looming sell-off of millions of Baby Boomer homes provides ample motivation for investigating alternative policies to bolster the homeownership demand of today’s young adults. The fates of the generations are tied together, and so far, the young are lagging behind.”

Mortgage Rates Sideways to Slightly Lower

June 22,2017
by admin

Mortgage rates have been so little-changed in recent days that yesterday’s coverage wouldn’t need to be changed in order to apply perfectly today. Indeed, the 3rd paragraph is a word-for-word repeat. To be fair though, we would need to update yesterday’s reference to “especially over the past 5 days.” That “5” would now be a “6,” obviously.

Any detectable difference in today’s rate quotes would come in the form of slightly lower upfront costs versus yesterday. The actual interest rate quote remains unchanged. This sideways trend could easily continue for several more days.

The absence of change continues to be a good thing given that rates remain very close to their lowest levels in more than 8 months. Only a handful of recent days have been any better. 4.0% is the most prevalently-quoted conventional 30yr fixed rate on top tier scenarios, though a few of the aggressive lenders remain at 3.875%.

Loan Originator Perspective

Another flat, flat day in bond markets, and my rate sheets are virtually identical to yesterday’s. Being stuck near 2017’s lowest rates is a good thing. Hopefully we’ll see some month end demand next week (improving pricing). I’m not in a big hurry to lock new loans closing in August, prefer to wait until we can do 30 day locks. Borrowers with July closings may want to lock now and relax. –Ted Rood, Senior Originator

Today’s Most Prevalent Rates

  • 30YR FIXED – 3.875-4.00
  • FHA/VA – 3.5-3.75%
  • 15 YEAR FIXED – 3.125-3.25%
  • 5 YEAR ARMS – 2.75 – 3.25% depending on the lender

Ongoing Lock/Float Considerations

  • Investors were relatively convinced that the decades-long trend toward lower rates had been permanently reversed after Trump became president, but such a conclusion would require YEARS to truly confirm

  • Instead of continuing higher in 2017, rates instead formed a narrow, sideways range, and held inside until April. Investor perceptions are shifting such that fiscal reforms and other policy developments will need to live up to expectations in order to push rates higher. Geopolitical risks would also need to avoid flaring up (more than they already have)
  • For the first time since the election, we’re in a rate environment where you wouldn’t be crazy not to lock at every little opportunity/improvement. Until/unless it’s broken, the highest rates of early-2017 mark the ceiling, and we’re now waiting to see how much lower we can go from here.
  • Rates discussed refer to the most frequently-quoted, conforming, conventional 30yr fixed rate for top tier borrowers among average to well-priced lenders. The rates generally assume little-to-no origination or discount except as noted when applicable. Rates appearing on this page are “effective rates” that take day-to-day changes in upfront costs into consideration.

MBS RECAP: Bonds Modestly Stronger, But Sideways Theme Remains

June 22,2017
by admin

Yesterday’s recap went into some detail about the market phenomenon that can result in intense periods of sideways momentum (and trader apathy) during certain weeks of certain summertime months. Long-story short, this week was a great candidate for what some market participants refer to as the summer doldrums, and so far it is not disappointing.

Back in the day, we might have looked forward to another weekly release of Jobless Claims data, but it hasn’t been a market mover for quite some time. FHFA Home Prices were also on the data calendar, and while we’ve never really looked to data that old (it applies to April) for trading level guidance, the results were nonetheless interesting to housing/mortgage market folks. The FHFA clocked an increase in the annual pace of appreciation from 6.2% to 6.8%. This time last year, most forecasts had that number in the 4-5% range.

There wasn’t much movement for bonds apart from small back-and-forth volatility in the morning. Bonds rallied into the NYSE open and then returned to previous levels as the NYSE session progressed. Overnight highs in 10yr Treasury yields served as a nice ceiling at 2.167 and bonds gradually moved back toward the morning’s best levels by the close. None of the above was worth much drama from lenders, although there was a bit of negative reprice risk in the late morning hours.

MBS Day Ahead: Bond Traders Eyeing The Exits As Flat Week Winds Down

June 22,2017
by admin

You’ve heard of “innocent until proven guilty.” This week of trading in bond markets has been “flat and boring until proven volatile.” For many, it’s the first full week of summer. For others, it’s the week where their kids finished school. And for everyone, it’s a week without much by way of significant economic data that lies just before a “month/quarter-end” trading week. To say that traders have been increasingly tuned out is an understatement.

Today epitomizes that “tuning out” theme, not only because it’s the last day of the week described above, but also because yields are starting out in the same old range that’s been dominating since Fed day (last Wednesday). In other words, it looked potentially boring on paper, and it continues to be boring when we see how it’s actually being traded.

This can all change rather quickly, of course. After all, in financial markets, there are no rules that say something has to stay flat just because it looks like it probably will. The better way to approach today is to simply use the “probably” as a baseline and keep an eye out for any threat to that baseline.

In terms of 10yr yields, a “threat” would look like a break below 2.143 (my kind of threat!) or above 2.18. Outside those boundaries, we’d be looking at 2.19-2.22 on the high end and 2.13-2.11 on the low end.

2017-6-23 open

Legal and Compliance News – Servicing Enforcement Action

June 22,2017
by admin

Rumors continue to swirl, this time about Orange County’s Americash. Yes, the drop in refi volume is showing, and even if you made it through the bad first quarter, it’s not a cake walk out there. On the other hand, I wish I owned stock in George Clooney. As if he needs help with two new twin mouths to feed, he received news that Diageo will purchase Casamigos, the tequila company he cofounded and owns roughly a third of, for up to $1 billion. But the jury’s out about owning stock in Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway: it has committed $1.5 billion to a credit facility for Canada’s Home Capital Group Inc. “The investment in Home Capital, which has acknowledged responsibility for mortgage fraud, also lets Berkshire deploy a small piece of its $96.5 billion hoard of cash…”

Legal & regulatory updates

The Trump administration’s new position in the U.S. Supreme Court that workplace arbitration agreements banning class actions do not violate federal labor law is garnering support from the least unlikely source: big business. Several organizations submitted friend-of-the-court briefs after acting Solicitor General Jeffrey Wall notified the court on June 16 that President Trump’s DOJ is taking a different position than the Obama administration. The justice’s next term will hear arguments in a trio of disputes will over whether arbitration agreements are enforceable under the Federal Arbitration Act or whether they violate the National Labor Relations Act.

The SCOTUS decision in Bristol-Myers Squibb v. Superior Court of California had the effect of confiscating many plaintiffs’ all-access passes to venues considered more favorable to their side, such as certain state courts in California, Illinois, Missouri and Texas. And that’s not lost on litigators who make a living on so-called “mass actions.” “It clearly is a game changer for certain of these state courts that have been receptive to the mass actions.”

Focusing more on mortgages, remember that the Trump Administration released its report on core principles for financial regulatory reform. Any changes to the regulatory system will be generally slow, as rule changes require comment periods and coordination between the different agencies. The Treasury Department principles don’t necessarily eliminate the Obama Administration’s regulatory regime, but they refine some and attempt to eliminate some of the unintended consequences. Ultimately, ending regulation by enforcement action will go a long way towards increasing capital availability.

Speaking of which, earlier this month the CFPB ordered a mortgage servicer to pay up to $1.15 million in restitution for failing to provide borrowers with required foreclosure protections when handling loss-mitigation applications. The consent order alleges the servicer violated RESPA by failing to send critical information to consumers who were applying for foreclosure relief, and, in some circumstances, beginning foreclosure proceedings on borrowers who had submitted completed applications.

At the Comply2017 conference held earlier this week in New York City, Scott Steckel, a member of the CFPB’s Office of Consumer Response, gave a presentation in which he detailed the CFPB’s complaint process and how the CFPB shares complaint data through its complaint database. Law firm Ballard Spahr covered it.

The Federal Trade Commission has provided its annual Financial Acts Enforcement Report to the CFPB covering the FTC’s enforcement activities in 2016 relating to compliance with Regulation Z (Truth in Lending Act), Regulation M (Consumer Leasing Act), and Regulation E (Electronic Fund Transfer Act). Under Dodd-Frank, the FTC retained its authority to enforce these regulations.

The Mortgage Bankers Association is objecting to one of the three recommendations made by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) in its annual report to Congress. The FHFA said it intends to ask Congress to allow it to add certain regulated counterparties, specifically non-bank servicers, to its examination schedule. Mortgage News Daily reports that, “The agencies said that its regulated entities, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the GSEs) and the Federal Home Loan Banks, contract with third parties for services to support the secondary mortgage market. ‘While oversight of these counterparties is important to safety and soundness of FHFA’s regulated entities,’ the reports says, ‘it is currently exercised only through contractual provisions where possible.’ Critics point out that the FHFA already can set GSE counterparty requirements on servicers and the CFPB’s comprehensive mortgage servicing rules apply to all mortgage servicers.

The MBA sent letters to Attorney General Jeff Sessions and HUD Secretary Ben Carson, urging them to seek a moratorium on the Department of Justice bringing claims under the False Claims Act (FCA) against mortgage lenders who participate in the FHA’s Mortgage Insurance Programs. In both letters, MBA urged the Attorney General to suspend and establish a moratorium on such actions until FHA has completed its work on the comprehensive “defect taxonomy” by establishing proportionate remedies for each severity tier, and by revising the loan level certifications. The FHA has not articulated clear standards setting forth the errors that affect insurability and might support indemnification or a False Claims action, and those errors that do not.

Capital markets

Looking at our interest rates, things have been very tame as of late, including today. No one likes volatility, especially us capital markets folks. And LOs who do a lot of business seem more focused on “getting the deal done” than bickering over price. Yesterday agency mortgage-backed security prices closed narrowly changed, and the Treasury market didn’t do much either (our friend the 10-year closed with a yield of 2.15%).

For the first official Friday of summer there isn’t much news. The Markit Manufacturing and Services PMIs (whatever that all tells us) at 9:45am ET. For something we all understand May new home sales are due at 10AM ET, and there is a gaggle of Fed presidents speaking today. For rates, the 10-year’s yield is 2.15% and agency MBS prices are nearly identical to last night’s close.

Jobs and Announcements

Homeward Residential is pleased to welcome Scott Houp as the Western Division VP of Sales, overseeing the division’s Broker, Emerging Banker and Non-Delegated origination channels. Mr. Houp comes to Homeward with over 30 years of mortgage banking & residential lending experience. He has held senior leadership sales roles for some of the top money center banks and non-banking entities in the country, focusing specifically on business-to-business third party origination (TPO) for the last 22 years. “Scott’s knowledge and leadership are a great addition to our already highly experienced sales team,” says Greg O’Connor, President of Homeward. “He will be a fantastic resource for our originators and play a key role in the continued growth of Homeward’s TPO business.” Homeward is currently hiring experienced account executives nationwide. To learn more, contact Craig Drouin (561-682-7145) for a confidential consultation.

New Penn Financial, a nationally-recognized mortgage lender, recently announced the promotion of Kevin Harrigan to the position of Chief Operating Officer. Mr. Harrigan will lead the organization’s four business channels as well as New Penn’s corporate operations teams. “This is an exciting time to be part of New Penn,” said Harrigan. “We have a great team in place and I look forward to leading New Penn through this next stage of operational maturity and sustained growth.” New Penn offers residential mortgage loans through four business channels – Direct-to-Consumer (Call Center), Traditional Distributed Retail, Joint Venture, and (TPO). The organization has over 2,000 employees, operates 160 offices across the country, and is Fannie, Freddie, Ginnie, HUD, FHA, VA, and USDA approved. Since inception in 2008, New Penn has forged a national industry presence built on a deep menu of competitive products, exceptional customer service, and healthy lending practices. For more information on opportunities, contact Jennifer Smith.

The Compliance Group announced the release of a refreshed brand identity including a new logo and website. Annemaria Allen, CEO at TCG, explained that TCG was originally founded to provide quality care to our clients while also staying on top of the cutting edge of the complexities of compliance and credit risk. She believes the brand refresh will better reflect the current and future direction of the company and that TCG’s exciting new technology, enhanced website and brand refresh will leave the user wanting more. The Compliance Group is looking to the future with growth at the forefront. The newly launched TCG brand and website features a sleek, user and mobile friendly experience. Visitors will find a transformative new look including a new logo, modern website and formalized branding surrounding TCG service offerings.

WealthMaker, an Australian-based financial service company (mortgages and investments), is seeking merger and acquisition partners, as part of its expansion into the US market. You can visit WealthMaker at and also see With the re-finance market drying up and increasing competitive pressures this is an opportunity to grow with a company that has a reputation for innovation (See Aspire Video on Facebook page). Please email confidential enquiries to Michael McAlary.

REX is “a well-funded, game-changing real estate technology startup located in Woodland Hills, CA. With the goal of improving the lives of homebuyers and sellers, REX created a digital platform and real estate service that eliminates traditional agent commissions, sells homes faster and shifts control away from agents over to those who matter most: consumers. Since 2015 REX has grown rapidly and is expanding nationwide. REX is seeking a mortgage broker who will work with us to establish a national REX mortgage brokerage that will make the experience of obtaining a home loan easy and positive for homebuyers. The principle role of the REX mortgage broker will be to help prospective home buyers secure financing for their dream home. The mortgage broker will guide these home buyers through every step of the loan process and create great experiences for those buyers. Contact:

Most loan officers I meet are always looking for ways to grow their business. The great ones stand apart from the competition by not accepting status quo. They’re not afraid to try new tactics, to experiment with new lead acquisition efforts, and to continually hone their borrower experience along the way. As consumer expectations continue to shift, it is incumbent on any loan officer to meet prospects where they are to scale your business in a predictable way. A recent eBook from Maxwell, “6 Ways to Master Inbound Leads” provides a guide to increase your inbound leads and grow your business. From website optimization to digital campaigns to creating an “ideal borrower profile,” the eBook provides tips and links to free resources to help loan officers get ahead of their competition from the start. Download it free here.

Continuing to expand its West Coast Retail Division, PRMG announced Marlene Hoover as one of the newest Regional Managers for the Southern California Territory. “As an accomplished mortgage professional with over 29 years’ experience, known in the industry for her professionalism and high level of ethics, Marlene Hoover has demonstrated herself as a motivated leader, top-producer and an influential ambassador in supporting her teams. In her new role with PRMG, Marlene will support local retail Branch Managers and LOs with their career advancements and helping to expand their Retail footprint throughout Southern California. Prior to joining PRMG, Marlene held various management and senior leadership roles at several national retail lenders. Marlene will report directly to PRMG SVP, Director of National Retail Production; Chris Sorensen. Voted No. 1 of the 50 Best Companies to Work for in America 2015; No. 1 Best in the Desert 2017; and TOP 25 of 100 Mortgage Companies in America! PRMG employs over 1,300 people across the country! Contact Chris Sorensen (909.262.0452) for other opportunities.

Home Point Financial Corporation announced the formation of its new Institutions Group. This group will include Correspondent Lending, Capital Markets and Home Point’s wholly-owned warehouse lending subsidiary, NattyMac. Led by Maria Fregosi, Chief Capital Markets Officer, the Institutions Group will be able to efficiently and effectively serve correspondent clients with services and products that capitalize on the financial resources, technology and expertise of Home Point Financial.

ACES Risk Management (ARMCO), a provider of financial quality control and compliance software ACES Audit Technology, announced that it has hired Ben Mahan as chief technology officer (CTO).