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MBA: Purchase Applications Reach Highest Level Since 2010

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Applications for purchase loans reached their highest level since 2010 last week, the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) reported Wednesday. The group's Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending January 18 showed overall application volume was up a seasonally adjusted 7 percent from the prior week. On an unadjusted basis, application volume was up about 8 percent. The rise in applications comes despite a slight rise in interest rates.

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DataQuick Adapts Products to New CFPB Rules

San Diego-based DataQuick, a technology provider for the lending industry, announced it has adapted its products to meet new industry standards. The company's MindBox decisioning program has assisted lenders in obtaining qualification information for more than 20 years. With the release of the new industry standards from the CFPB, DataQuick is adjusting the product to ensure compliance.

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Small Lenders Leverage Program to Compete with Larger Firms

The Mortgage Partnership Finance (MPF) Program, originated in 1997 to assist small financial institutions in selling fixed-rate conforming loans to the secondary market, has experienced rapid growth over the last year. Both the number of financial institutions participating in the program and the number of loans funded through the program grew in 2012, according to a release.

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Nationstar, KB Home Announce Plans to Form New Mortgage Company

In a joint announcement, KB Home and Nationstar Mortgage LLC announced an agreement to form Home Community Mortgage, LLC, a limited liability company offering a range of mortgage banking services to KB Home customers. As KB Home's preferred lender, Nationstar has served homebuyers on-site in the builder's communities across the country. According to the announcement, Nationstar will remain KB Home's preferred choice until Home Community Mortgage's launch, which is scheduled for the latter half of 2013.

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Harvard Researchers Argue for New ‘FHA Corporation’

A recent report from Harvard University's Joint Center for Housing Studies argues for more flexibility for the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). Under direction of a congressionally appointed advisory board and CEO, the new "FHA Corp." should be free to enact its own hiring process, manage its own budget and adapt to market changes "without Congress legislating each change or mandating numerous complex or inconsistent rules and regulations," researchers suggest.

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MBA: Slow Growth Still Expected Despite Positive Signs

Washington may have (arguably) successfully avoided 2013's budgetary landmines so far, but the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) reports everything it has seen so far suggests economic growth will be modest in 2013. In its most recent Economic and Mortgage Finance Commentary, the association forecasts slow economic gains in the first half of 2013 "as the effects of the payroll tax increase and the spending cuts from sequestration or a similar decline in government spending kicks in."

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