Industry Briefs Mar. 3, 2021

MISMO Wins 2021 HousingWire Tech100 Mortgage Award

MISMO, the mortgage industry’s standards organization, has been named a 2021 winner of HousingWire’s Tech100 Mortgage award. The award criteria were based on technology innovation and impact within the mortgage market.

MISMO eMortgage standards provide a framework for implementing all aspects of the digital mortgage process. MISMO’s submission focused on three innovative eMortgage initiatives: remote online notarization standards to further the use of audio-visual communications devices to notarize documents, RON certifications to support the integrity and scalability of eMortgages and MISMO SMART Docs®, which provide a technical specification and framework for representing documents in an electronic format. All eNotes are MISMO SMART Docs.

“Industry professionals use MISMO standards every time they originate a mortgage whether they realize it or not,” said Seth Appleton, President of MISMO. “This award recognizes the essential role that MISMO plays role as the central point for collaboration between all industry participants, allowing them to speak the same language and tackle the industry’s toughest business issues. We are pleased for this acknowledgement of our role in advancing the industry’s digital future.”

“These 100 real estate and mortgage companies took digital disruption to a whole new level and propelled a complete digital revolution, leaving a digital legacy that will impact borrowers, clients and companies for years to come,” said Brena Nath, HousingWire’s HW+ Managing Editor. ”Knowing what these companies were able to navigate and overcome, we’re excited to announce this year’s list of the most innovative technology companies serving the mortgage and real estate industries.”

Equifax Launches Lost Sales Analysis Platform

Equifax, Atlanta, launched its Ignite Lost Sales Analysis platform, which leverages the Equifax cloud to provide the differentiated data, actionable insights and clear visualizations lenders need during prospecting, origination and portfolio retention.

The Lost Sales Analysis application builds on previous offerings by consolidating lender data with cloud-based Equifax Ignite property and behavior data. This harmonized information then flows into dynamic visuals that help lenders determine the strategies, offers and terms needed to attract borrowers most likely to meet risk management and growth objectives. Access to public record property data helps determine where a lost prospect closed a mortgage or home equity loan.

National MI Integrates with Mortech’s Product and Pricing Engine

National Mortgage Insurance Corp., Emeryville, Calif., is now integrated with Mortech, a Zillow Group business. This integration brings National MI’s real-time, risk-based mortgage insurance pricing tool, Rate GPS, to lenders leveraging Mortech’s product and pricing engine, helping them gain operational efficiencies including increased productivity and decreased loan officer cycle time for a more expedited customer response time.

Mortech’s product and pricing engine provides lenders with instant, accurate pricing, factoring in base price, servicing-released premium, loan-level price adjustments and profit margin. These fully automated processes that Mortech provides also include the ability to compare PMI pricing eligibility and product selection, which can help eliminate the need for lenders to manually search, compare and price mortgage insurance.

FHFA Authorizes More than $1 Billion for Affordable Housing Funds

The Federal Housing Finance Agency authorized disbursement of $1.09 billion for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac’s affordable housing allocations for 2020. FHFA said this is the largest amount ever disbursed and more than double what was provided last year.

Of the Enterprises’ provided funds, $711 million will go to HUD for the Housing Trust Fund, an increase from the $326.4 million disbursed for 2019. Also, $383 million will go to the Department of the Treasury for the Capital Magnet Fund, an increase from the $175.8 million disbursed for 2019.

The Housing Trust Fund, overseen by HUD, allocates money annually to states and state-designated entities for the production or preservation of affordable housing through the acquisition, new construction, reconstruction, and/or rehabilitation of non-luxury housing.

The Capital Magnet Fund, overseen by Treasury, competitively awards money to finance affordable housing activities, as well as related economic development activities and community service facilities.

Coronavirus by the Numbers: How a Yearlong Pandemic Impacted U.S. Housing Market

Redfin, Seattle, said record-low mortgage rates and remote work are driving scores of Americans to buy bigger homes in more affordable places, but those same factors are fueling fierce bidding wars, skyrocketing prices and an intensifying housing shortage

Redfin created 12 charts that illustrate the pandemic’s impact on the U.S. housing market. Key findings:

–Despite the economy’s plunge into recession, U.S. homeowners have reaped $3.1 trillion in home value during the pandemic as a result of rising housing prices. The total worth of U.S. homes was $32.4 trillion in January, up 10% from $29.3 trillion a year earlier. 

–The median home sale price in the U.S. was $330,500 in January, up 14.3% from a year earlier. That’s the biggest annual gain during a given month since at least 2013.

–There are significantly more buyers than there are sellers—an imbalance that has existed for years but has significantly intensified during the pandemic.

–The U.S. is currently in one of the most competitive housing markets in history. Nationwide, 58.3% of home offers written by Redfin agents faced bidding wars in January, up from 53.3% in December. That marks the ninth-straight month in which more than half of offers encountered competition.

Black Knight: Mortgage in Forbearance Up 2nd Straight Week

Black Knight, Jacksonville, Fla., said mortgages in active forbearance rose for the second week in a row, climbing by 21,000 (+0.08) since last Tuesday, pushing the total back up above 2.7 million after falling below that threshold for the first time since last April earlier this month.

Despite the weekly increase, Black Knight said the monthly rate of decline held steady at -2%, continuing the trend of very slow but steady improvement in the number of outstanding forbearance cases. As of February 23, 2.7 million homeowners – 5.1% of all mortgage-holders – remain in active forbearance. This includes 9.3% of FHA/VA, 3.2% of GSE and 5.2% of portfolio/private mortgages. Some 160K forbearance plans were set to hit scheduled expiation points at the end of February.

Bend, Boise and Charleston Attracting Twice as Many Out-of-Town Homebuyers as Last Year Amid Pandemic-Fueled Migration

Redfin, Seattle, said nationwide, 30.7% of users looked to move to a different metro in January. That’s up from 25.9% during the same time period last year and the highest share since Redfin started tracking migration in 2017. The increase is driven by buyers leaving pricey coastal areas such as the Bay Area and Los Angeles in favor of relatively affordable places such as Boise, Idaho and Bend, Ore. 

The report said Austin had a bigger net inflow of residents than any other major metro in January, followed by Phoenix, Las Vegas, Dallas and Atlanta. Relatively affordable inland areas like those five are typically the most popular destinations for people relocating.

San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C. and Seattle topped the list of metros with the biggest net outflow in January.

AAFMAA Mortgage Services LLC Partners with NAIBRS to Advance Homeownership

AAFMAA Mortgage Services LLC, Morrisville, N.C., announced its urban development partnership with the National Association of Independent Builders and Real-Estate Services. 

The Military Urban Development Initiative is designed to build new affordably priced housing for diverse communities comprising servicemembers and veterans and non-military low-to-median income homebuyers. The housing projects will use virtual land staging (Lot2Home), a network of qualified builders, trained realtors and participating mortgage lenders.

Formed in 2016, NAIBRS was established as a not-for-profit trade group bringing together critical participants for new residential construction. Its members of real estate agents, builders, mortgage lenders and suppliers are under one national network.