MBA: 1st Quarter Commercial/Multifamily Originations Up 12 Percent

Commercial and multifamily mortgage loan originations rose by 12 percent in the first quarter from last year but fell from the fourth quarter, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported.

The MBA Quarterly Survey of Commercial/Multifamily Mortgage Bankers Originations noted in line with seasonality trends, first quarter originations fell by 34 percent lower from the fourth quarter.

“The momentum seen in 2018’s record year of borrowing and lending continued in the first quarter of this year,” said MBA Vice President of Commercial Real Estate Research Jamie Woodwell. “First quarter volumes were higher for nearly every property type, and double-digit growth in loan volume for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac led the increase among capital sources. Low interest rates and strong property values continue to make commercial real estate an attractive market for borrowers.”

From a year earlier, a rise in originations for industrial, health care and hotel properties led overall increases in commercial/multifamily lending volumes. By property type, industrial (73 percent), health care (41 percent), hotels (14 percent), retail (9 percent) and multifamily (9 percent) all saw year-over-year gains by dollar volume. Dollar volume of office property loans was unchanged.

Among investor types, dollar volume of loans originated for government-sponsored enterprises (Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac) increased by 14 percent year-over-year. Life insurance company loans increased by 7 percent; commercial bank portfolios increased 6 percent; while loans originated for commercial mortgage-backed securities decreased by 4 percent.

As is typical in the first quarter, originations fell from the fourth quarter, with total activity falling by 34 percent. Among property types, declines occurred in health care (49 percent), hotels (45 percent), multifamily (40 percent), retail (32 percent) and office space (30 percent). Industrial properties bucked the overall trend, rising by 17 percent from the fourth quarter.

Among investor types, dollar volume of loans for GSEs decreased by 43 percent; originations for commercial banks decreased by 34 percent; loans for life insurance companies decreased by 28 percent; and loans for CMBS decreased by 22 percent.

To view the full report of MBA’s Quarterly Survey of Commercial/Multifamily Mortgage Bankers Originations, visit