Housing Trends: Six Key Takeaways from the 2015 HMDA Numbers

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CoreLogic Origination Estimate Tracks HMDA Closely

The 2015 federal Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) numbers are in and they line up closely with CoreLogic’s estimate of total home loan origination last year[1]. The CoreLogic estimate for single-family first-lien mortgage originations of $1.69 trillion in 2015 was just a hair above HMDA’s $1.64 trillion and particularly close on the purchase mortgage side: $828 billion versus HMDA’s $876 billion (see chart).

Here are some key takeaways from the new HMDA numbers:

  • The refinance share of first-lien mortgage originations increased to 47 percent in 2015 from 40 percent in 2014, reflecting the lower fixed mortgage rates in 2015.[2] There was a 56 percent increase in refinance originations and an 18 percent increase in purchase mortgage originations.
  • Independent mortgage companies continue to show strength at the expense of banks. Twelve of the top 25 originators in 2015 were independent mortgage firms, and these originators led all types of lenders with a 44 percent market share of originations.
  • Minority borrowers showed gains in purchase mortgage shares. Black borrowers received 5.5 percent of purchase loans, up from 5.2 percent in 2014, while Hispanic white borrowers received 8.3 percent, up from 7.9 percent. While up year-over-year, these shares remain lower than pre-mortgage crash levels.
  • The average loan size for purchases and refinances combined increased by 5 percent in 2015. The average loan amount for purchases increased 4.1 percent year over year from $231,000 in 2014 to $240,000 in 2015, while the average refinance loan rose 6.4 percent from $225,000 to $239,000.
  • Denial rates fell slightly. Last year 12.1 of all purchase loan applications were denied, down from 13.2 percent in 2014. The refinance denial rate fell to 27.4 percent from 30.9 percent.
  • The Federal Housing Administration’s move to decrease mortgage insurance premiums paid off, helping to bump the nonconventional[3] market share of purchase mortgages to 39 percent last year from 36 percent in 2014.

1 See “HMDA Preview” http://www.corelogic.com/blog/authors/molly-boesel/2016/08/hmda-preview.aspx

2 Mortgage rates for 30-year fixed-rate loans averaged 3.85% in 2015 compared with 4.17% in 2014, according to Freddie Mac.

3 Nonconventional originations refer to those with mortgage issuance from the Federal Housing Administration, the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Farm Service Agency, or the Rural Housing Service of first-lien home-purchase loans for site-built (not manufactured) properties.

© 2016 CoreLogic, Inc. All rights reserved.



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