August 6, 2014: “Getting a Mortgage Is Growing Easier”, a Time article by Jacob Davidson on credit availability for home-loans, featuring HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Keith Gumbinger, vice president at mortgage research firm HSH, says that while loans can still be difficult for some consumers to get, banks are approving borrowers with slightly lower credit scores. Previously, Gumbinger says, banks required a FICO score of about 640 to approve a loan backed by the Federal Housing Administration, called an FHA loan. Now applicants with scores as low as 600 are getting the green light.
July 24, 2014: “Taking advantage of low ‘floating’ rates for adjustable rate mortgages”, a MarketWatch article by Daniel Goldstein covering adjustable rate mortgages, which includes HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a Riverdale, N.J., company that tracks mortgage rates, expects mortgage rates to stay low for the next year, with just a quarter-point increase before 2015. “Our economy is only growing modestly, so bad news, economic or geopolitical, is good for mortgage rates,” he says.
July 21, 2014: “This is the worst thing about getting a mortgage”, a MarketWatch article by Amy Hoak on the home loan process, that includes HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Also think about how long you plan on staying in the home, as well as your tolerance for risk—both of which will help you determine whether to even consider adjustable-rate mortgages, Gumbinger said. By knowing the type of mortgage you want—before even talking with a mortgage banker—you won’t have to sit through pitches that don’t apply to you.
“You could lose your mind in conflicting advice,” Gumbinger said, so before talking with someone, know where you stand financially and the type of mortgage that interests you.
July 17, 2014: “With jumbo mortgages, borrowers in no rush to change”, a MarketWatch article by Daniel Goldstein on jumbo mortgages, showcasing a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Qualifying for a jumbo refinance may still be difficult for less-qualified borrowers. Some borrowers who might have easily obtained loans in years past find themselves out of step with today’s stricter underwriting standards, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a Riverdale, N.J.-based company that tracks mortgage rates.
July 17, 2014: “What’s Really Holding Back the Housing Recovery”, a Fox Business article by Kathryn Buschman Vasel on the housing recovery, with a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“Nothing in this recovery is going straight up with consistency, it’s about fits and starts,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of real estate website HSH.com. “The market is still doing better than last year, but just not quite as good as we are used to.”
July 14, 2014: “How to get thousands of dollars in mortgage relief from Citigroup”, a Marketwatch article by Catey Hill and Amy Hoak on mortgage relief that features HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
While down payment or closing cost assistance might also be offered, it’s likely that Citi will “look to help troubled existing clients in their portfolio first,” Gumbinger said. Those that do get down payment and closing cost assistance will likely be borrowers in some of the areas hardest hit by the mortgage crisis, those who lost homes to foreclosure and short sale and first-time, low-to-moderate income borrowers, according to the Department of Justice.
July 12, 2014: “How Mom and Dad can help first-time home buyers”, a San Francisco Chronicle article by Kathleen Pender on first-time home-buying assistance, featuring a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Parents are not allowed to tell the bank they are providing money to a child for a down payment as a gift, while expecting the child to repay it. “Lying or misleading a lender into making a mortgage loan is fraud,” says Keith Gumbinger, a vice president with HSH Associates. “That’s a felony charge.”
July 10, 2014: “Scant Interest in F.H.A. Program”, a New York Times article by Lisa Prevost on the F.H.A. short refinance program, which contains a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Asking lenders and investors to voluntarily take a substantial loss now, “in hopes of not losing some money tomorrow,” is a hard sell, said Keith T. Gumbinger, the vice president of HSH.com, a publisher of loan information.
July 10, 2014: “U.S. Mortgage Rates Increase as Job Market Improves”, a Bloomberg article by Prashant Gopal on mortgage rates, with a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“The employment report was definitely good,” Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a Riverdale, New Jersey-based mortgage-data firm, said yesterday in a telephone interview. While solid economic news should be pushing mortgage costs even higher, the Federal Reserve “is still buying mortgage-backed securities and treasuries, both intended to keep rates low.”
July 8, 2014: “Adjustable Rate Mortgages Are A Wise Choice for Borrowers”, a MainStreet article by Jeff Brown on ARM’s, that features HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“While it seems we have made our way out of the turbulent times that have bounced the market around for the last few years, there is still plenty of uncertainty ahead,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, the mortgage and housing research company.
In his midyear analysis, Gumbinger says rates on 30-year fixed mortgages could edge up to 5% or 5.25% by the end of the year, from today’s 4.233%. With the economy improving, the Federal Reserve will continue to wind down efforts to keep long-term interest rates down, Gumbinger says. A 5% rate would still be low by historical standards.
June 20, 2014: “4 Smart Steps to Take Before Buying Your First Home”, a Kiplinger article by Andrea Browne on home-buying finance, featuring HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Don’t buy a home where you live now, just for the sake of homeownership. For many twenty- and thirtysomethings still exploring their career paths, buying a home can really limit their freedom. If you’re serious about becoming a homeowner, make sure the city you decide to buy in is a place you won’t mind sticking around for a while. Experts often advise would-be buyers to plan on staying in a new home no fewer than five to seven years. “You’re going to spend thousands of dollars to get into the home. To get out of it is going to be equally expensive and may possibly cost more when you do it in less than five years or in a down market,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice-president of, a publisher of mortgage information and rates.
June 12, 2014:“U.S. Mortgage Rates Rise for a Second Week”, a Bloomberg article by Prashant Gopal on mortgage rates featuring a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“Mortgage rates have confounded expectations by falling in the face of a strengthening economy this spring,” Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a Riverdale, New Jersey-based mortgage-data firm, said yesterday in a telephone interview. “But now it would seem that interest rates are behaving a little more normally.”
June 6, 2014: “Are Adjustable-Rate Mortgages Right for You?”, an AARP article by Lynnette Khalfani-Cox on ARMs, featuring HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“With an ARM, you might free up many hundreds of dollars per month,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH.com, a mortgage information website. “That money could be put into your 401(k) or even stuffed back into your house, letting you lower your mortgage balance and build equity.”
“But the problem with ARMs,” says Gumbinger, a veteran mortgage pro with more than 30 years in the industry, “is that they’re not without risk.”
June 5, 2014: “Freddie Mac: Fixed mortgage rates edge higher; 30-year averaging 4.14%”, a Los Angeles Times article by E. Scott Reckard on mortgage rates featuring HSH.com’s Tim Manni:
Fixed mortgage rates held fairly steady until Tuesday, when they jumped by about a tenth of a percentage point before falling back on Wednesday, said Tim Manni, managing editor at HSH.com, which tracks trends in the market.
June 5, 2014: “Depuzzling the confusion of America’s housing recovery”, a Fortune article by Jean Chatzky on the housing recovery featuring a quote from HSH.com’s Tim Manni:
The average rate on the 30-year fell to 4.12% this week according to Fannie Mae, the average on the 15-year to 3.25%. This is one-third of a point lower than the highs hit late last summer, but also about a point higher than the lows of recent years. “This is confounding expectations,” says Tim Manni of HSH.com, the mortgage information website. Rates tend to fall when data is released showing that the economy is slowing–and rise when we get reports that it’s improving. They’re not. Consumer confidence is up according to The Conference Board. Durable goods orders are rising. And, according to a recent Gallup Survey, the amount consumers are spending on a daily basis–at $98–a six-year high and $10 over the April average.
June 2, 2014: “Fear of Rejection is Keeping Homebuyers on Sidelines”, a Fox Business article by Kathryn Buschman Vasel on the obstacles of getting a mortgage, featuring a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“One cannot overestimate the need for first-time buyers in this market,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of housing website HSH.com. “Nothing moves without the first-time buyer, if no one buys the bottom-rung properties those people can’t move up and so on and so forth. It’s preventing the market from moving forward.”
May 30, 2014: “Sale pending: a lost generation in home buying”, a MarketWatch piece by David Weidner on the difficulty in homebuying, featuring HSH.com:
It’s easy to see why this generosity is generating excitement. San Francisco is, of course, among the most expensive cities in the U.S. and its housing the most unaffordable, according to mortgage broker HSH Associates. Income inequality, fueled by the booming tech industry, has made living in the Bay Area an exclusive proposition. Controversial, too.
May 30, 2014: “What you must earn to buy a home in 27 cities this summer”, a MSN Real Estate syndicated piece of our Salary Needed to Own a Home study.
May 29, 2014: “Open House Disasters to Avoid”, a Boston.com article by Scott Van Voorhis covering our piece on home seller mistakes in an open house:
I took a look for HSH.com at some of the biggest mistakes sellers should be on guard against when opening up their homes to hopefully eager but reliably critical buyers.
The pros out there definitely have their pet peeves and it’s worth your while to leverage their experience rather than learning the hard way, by trial and error. After all, your home will only be new to the market once – recycled listings aren’t hard to spot.
May 29, 2014: “US regions where buying a house is most and least affordable”, a Washington Post article by Dion Haynes covering our Salary Needed to Own a Home study:
To buy a median-priced home in this region, you’ll need to earn about $80,000 a year, according to a new study by online mortgage firm HSH.com. A buyer seeking to purchase a median-priced home of $358,900, according to the study, would have to earn $78,503.56. With a 4.45 percent 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, you’d pay about $1,831.75 a month, according to the study.
May 29, 2014: “Borrowers Tap Their Homes at a Hot Clip”, a Wall Street Journal article by Joe Light on home equity line of credits that features a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
This time, lenders seem to be offering Helocs only to borrowers with good credit in locations where home values have risen, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage-information site HSH.com. During the boom, homeowners could borrow up to 100% of their home’s value, said Mr. Gumbinger. Now it is most common to see a maximum of 80% and sometimes 85%, he said.
“Relative to where they were, lenders are still very conservative,” said Mr. Gumbinger. “Will the excesses of yesterday return? Only time will tell.”
May 25, 2014: “First-time buyers in NYC need $97K up front”, a New York Post article by Gregory Bresiger on homebuying in NYC, which features a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“It’s an expensive part of the world to do business,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com. Land here, he added, is “incredibly expensive.”
Gumbinger advises house hunters to be flexible. “It may mean moving out to the sticks,” he says. Or it may also mean being open-minded about where you live within the region, adds Ray Mignone, a financial adviser in Little Neck, Queens, who believes there are a few home bargains on Long Island.
May 23, 2014: “Tiger Woods Course Design Debut Drives Mexico Home Prices”, a Bloomberg article by Jonathan Levin and Brendan Case that features a line from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger on home equity:
To qualify, borrowers usually need 20 percent equity in a property and a credit score of at least 720 on a scale from 300 to 850, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a mortgage data firm in Riverdale, New Jersey.
May 22, 2014: “Mortgage Rates for U.S. Loans Fall as 30-Year at 4.14%”, a Bloomberg article by Prashant Gopal on mortgage rates, with a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Sales of previously owned homes rose 1.3 percent in April, the first increase in four months, the National Association of Realtors said today. The drop in loan costs this month may help spur some would-be buyers, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a Riverdale, New Jersey-based mortgage-data firm.
“With a combination of a flatter trajectory for home prices and lower rates, that should be preserving affordability as we go through the spring homebuying season,” Gumbinger said in a telephone interview yesterday.
May 21, 2014: “Want To Own An Average Seattle Home? Better Make $73K/Year”, a Curbed Seattle article by Sean Keeley about our Salary in 27 Cities study:
Mortgage website HSH.com determined how much a person would have to earn to be able to afford the principal and interest on a median-priced home in various cities around the U.S. Here in Seattle, that number is $73,851.06, the 7th-highest city on the list.
May 21, 2014: “FHFA’s Watt Imposing Less Risk Seen Rescuing Housing”, a Bloomberg Businessweek article by Kathleen Howley on FHFA’s Mel Watt, featuring a line from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Banks such as Wells Fargo & Co. and Bank of America Corp. typically cap a borrower’s total debt-to-income at 36 percent to quality for a mortgage, according to Keith Gumbinger, vice president of research firm HSH Inc. In some cases, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will back mortgages with DTIs above 43 percent, Watt said.
May 15, 2014: “Home Equity Loans Make a Cautious Return”, a New York Times article by Lisa Prevost on home equity loans making a comeback, featuring HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Another potential market for equity loans are those homeowners who refinanced their mortgages when interest rates were well under 4 percent and may now be more inclined to borrow on their equity and improve their existing home rather than sell and move up. But the reality is that people tend to move “when their needs have changed appreciably,” noted Keith Gumbinger, the vice president of HSH.com, a financial publisher, and they generally don’t have much choice.
Interest rates for equity lending are also higher than current rates on a new first mortgage. Rates on equity loans average just under 6 percent, Mr. Gumbinger said. Helocs, which usually have a variable rate based on the prime rate, average around 5 percent.
Mr. Gumbinger noted, too, that lenders are more strict about how much they will allow homeowners to borrow. “In general, lenders won’t let you leverage more than 80 percent of the value of the home,” he said. So even with higher home values, many homeowners still may not have enough equity to qualify.
May 12, 2014: “What is Mortgage Insurance?”, a Fox Business syndicated article on our Private Mortgage Insurance content by HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger.
May 9, 2014: “You’re Paying Too Much in Fees”, a Wall Street Journal article by Liz Moyer, Joe Light, and AnnaMaria Andriotis providing financial advice, featuring HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Lender fees, also called origination fees, often range from 0% to 1% of the total mortgage amount, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage-info website HSH.com.
May 4, 2014: “Housing Recovery Leaves Millennials Out in the Cold”, a Yahoo! Finance article by Marine Cole about young Americans in the housing market, featuring HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Homes have become too expensive for many Americans, especially for young people. Prices increased 13 percent for the 12 months ending in February in 20 major cities, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price index. Additionally, the supply of homes has remained tight. “There’s really nothing that’s compelling [people] to buy,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH.com, which publishes mortgage and consumer loan information.
May 2, 2014: “Be read to buy your first home”, a CNN Money article by Karen Cheney on first time homebuying challenges, featuring HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“Interest rates remain the envy of even your grandparents,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage publisher HSH.com. First, make your finances sparkle.
April 28, 2014: “Refinance your home mortgage now”, a MarketWatch article by Jonathan Clements on mortgage refinancing that features HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“Interest rates are no longer at 60-year lows,” notes Keith Gumbinger, a vice president with HSH.com, a mortgage-information provider. “We got as low as 3.44% for a 30-year conforming loan in December 2012. We’re above those historic lows by almost a full percentage point, but rates are still very favorable.”
“Interest rates are no longer at 60-year lows,” notes Keith Gumbinger, a vice president with HSH.com, a mortgage-information provider. “We got as low as 3.44% for a 30-year conforming loan in December 2012. We’re above those historic lows by almost a full percentage point, but rates are still very favorable.”
April 24, 2014: “Jumbo Mortgage Rates Lower Than Expected”, a Wall Street Journal article by Anya Martin about the recently low jumbo mortgage rates, featuring HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Relatively low jumbo mortgage rates can save a home buyer significant money in tight housing markets like San Francisco and Manhattan, where virtually every loan is a jumbo, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com.
Current rates are close to the bottom of an approximately six-month downward swing followed by stabilization that started in September, when average jumbo 30-year fixed rates were at 4.88%, Mr. Gumbinger says. Since then, rates have fluctuated only about a third of a percentage point, floating up and down between a low of 4.35% in November and a high of 4.67% at around the start of 2014.
April 18, 2014: “What first-time buyers should know about an open house”, a MSN Real Estate syndication of an article by Marcie Geffner on how to navigate an open house.
April 17, 2014: “Freddie Mac: Mortgage rates near low for year, 30-year at 4.27%”, a Los Angeles Times article by E. Scott Reckard on mortgage rates that mentions HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
At HSH.com, another rate tracker, Vice President Keith Gumbinger said the economy’s growth has been “more sideways than upwards,” leading investors to pull money out of stocks recently and show more willingness to accept lower interest rates.
“News that rates are closer to recent lows than highs might actually put a few more buyers in the [housing] market this spring,” Gumbinger said. “Hopefully, they will find sellers to meet them,” a reference to recent shortages in homes on the market.
April 8, 2014: “Is it time to bring back the homebuyer tax credit?”, a MSN Real Estate syndication of an HSH.com article on the homebuyer tax credit.
April 4, 2014: “Sunny outlook for sellers in upscale neighborhoods”, a CNN Money article by Lisa Gibbs and Amanda Gengler on real estate markets that showcases HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Will you need a large mortgage (typically more than $417,000)? The premium over what you’d pay for a smaller loan, which grew as wide as two full percentage points during the bust, has shrunk to next to nothing. Today rates on jumbos average 4.43%, vs. 4.42% for smaller loans, thanks in part to growing competition among banks. Big banks often offer the best rates and options on these types of loans, says Keith Gumbinger of mortgage publisher HSH.com.
April 3, 2014: “US Mortgage Rates Rise as Jobs Report Awaited”, a Bloomberg article by Prashant Gopal on U.S. mortgage rates that features a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“What we’re waiting for is economic news to know whether or not the winter was the cause for the stumble in economic growth,” Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a Riverdale, New Jersey-based mortgage-data firm, said in a telephone interview yesterday.
March 27, 2014: “Big loans for small spaces”, a Wall Street Jounal article by Lisa Selin Davis on jumbo loans in expensive housing markets, featuring HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger.
If there aren’t many comparable properties, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage-information firm HSH.com, “that might limit the number of lenders among whom the borrower would shop, and lenders who do make these loans may or may not have a full menu of product available.” Mr. Gumbinger says that lenders may choose only to offer one product, like an adjustable-rate mortgage, or could potentially add a premium to either the interest rate or the fees.
March 27, 2014: “What to do if your home-equity line is about to end”, a MarketWatch article by Christina Rexrode that features HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“If you have an interest-only, you should be reaching out to your lender right now, saying, ‘I see the train coming down the tracks, what can we do?’” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of the mortgage-data provider HSH.com.
March 6, 2014: “The evolution of FHA mortgage rates”, a syndicated piece on The Street that features HSH.com content on FHA mortgage rates.
March 5, 2014: “If you refinanced your mortgage, you’re probably not going to want to sell your house”, a Washington Post article by Dina El Boghdady on why not to sell your home, featuring HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“It will certainly affect people in markets that have experienced tremendous price appreciation or people who have lived in their homes for a long time and accumulated tremendous appreciation,” said Keith Gumbinger, a vice president at the mortgage information firm HSH.com.
February 20, 2014: “HARP refinances pass 3 million mark”, a MSN Real Estate syndicated piece that features HSH.com content about the Home Affordable Refinance Program.
February 18, 2014: “Do you make enough to buy a house? Depends (heavily) on where you live”, a U.S. News & World Report article by Danielle Kurtzleben featuring our research and HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“In the third quarter we had some of the highest interest rates show up in about two years,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH.com. That pushed home prices down, he adds. “What we find is in looking for that balance of affordability, if interest rates are rising, and we did have that in the third quarter, means home prices have to decline somewhat.” That means in the fourth quarter, when interest rates also fell, affordability improved for homebuyers, he says.
February 18, 2014: “How much income do you need to buy a home in the Bay Area?”, a San Francisco Chronicle article by Kathleen Pender on our salary needed to buy a median-priced home in 25 of the nation’s largest metro areas:
The only thing about the study that surprised HSH Vice President Keith Gumbinger is that the median price in the Bay Area fell 3.2 percent from the third to the fourth quarter (although it was up 15 percent on a year-over-year basis). That means the average income needed to buy a home in the Bay Area fell by $9,562 from the third to the fourth quarter.
February 18, 2014: “Here’s how much money you must earn to buy a home in 25 big US cities”, a Business Insider article by Megan Willett on our salary needed to buy a home in 25 cities study:
February 14, 2014: “4 Factors will influence housing inventory in 2014″, a Fox Business piece on housing inventory factors featuring HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Market observers like Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, believe the home-price gains we witnessed in 2013 won’t sustain throughout 2014. “Overall, we expect the recovery in housing markets to persist in 2014, but in a context of flattening gains for home prices, higher inventory levels and firm mortgage rates and underwriting standards.”
January 31, 2014: “Your money: New real estate rules for 2014″, a Reuters article by Beth Pinsker containing a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“The one thing we can say with certainty is that rates will go up and down,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH.com, a mortgage information website. When they will rise and fall, and by how much, is an open question.
Gumbinger says some people are rushing into home purchases or refinancing because they’ve panicked, applying the conventional wisdom that interest rates will climb.
But Gumbinger says before you buy, focus on the long-term value of the property to determine whether it’s worth getting into a 30-year mortgage.
January 29, 2014: “Higher rates loom for some modified mortgages”, a USA Today Money article by Julie Schmit addressing rising costs under HAMP with a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
The increased costs “could be a problem for some people,” says Keith Gumbinger, mortgage expert with HSH.com.
January 23, 2014: “A five year wait for a new rate”, a Wall Street Journal article by AnnaMaria Andriotis about the new jumbo 5/5 ARM with insight from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
But the opposite situation could also play out, with borrowers locking in a rate for five years just before rates start to drop. Critics say this mortgage only works in borrowers’ favor if they happen to time the market right. “It’s a crapshoot,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage-info firm HSH.com.
January 21, 2014: “Home-equity loans are back, pitfalls included”, a MarketWatch.com piece by Amy Hoak about applying for a loan or credit line containing a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“Given that the equity in a home can be the largest retirement asset for many people, it’s a good idea to protect it as best you can,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a publisher of consumer loan information. “Equity built through the regular pay-down of your mortgage takes a long time to build, and market-given equity—as in from a run-up in prices—can be ephemeral, as many have painfully learned in the recent price collapse.”
January 13, 2014: “5 ways the jumbo mortgage market will change in 2014″, a MarketWatch.com outlook piece by AnnaMaria Andriotis containing a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Separately, fewer lenders will make exceptions for borrowers who don’t supply full income documentation. Affluent jumbo borrowers have been able to provide partial documentation with some lenders and still get approved – a setup that helped those who are self-employed or have complex income structures.
But the CFPB’s new mortgage rules prohibit low- and no-documentation mortgages. These loans “may be much harder to come by,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at mortgage-info website HSH.com.
(This also appeared January 9, 2014 as “The Era of Big Loans” in the Wall Street Journal)
January 10, 2014: “Should You Buy Inflation Protection?”, a Wall Street Journal by Joe Light containing a good reason to select a fixed-rate mortgage provided by HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Another good move: If you already are planning to buy a home, do it soon. Over very long periods, home prices tend to keep up with inflation.
The rate of 30-year fixed-rate mortgages, now at 4.6%, is low and expected to rise as the Federal Reserve winds down its bond-buying stimulus program.
Since inflation may be accompanied by wage growth, while mortgage payments are fixed, a rise in prices could make it easier for a homeowner to pay off the debt, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH.com, a mortgage-information website.
January 10, 2014: “What the new mortgage rules mean for you”, a CNNMoney.com story by Les Christie with some words and context from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president”
Lenders don’t seem to be too worried about the new rules, according to Keith Gumbinger of HSH.com, a mortgage information provider. “It’s no surprise; everybody has been preparing for the change for months,” he said. “Because there will be additional underwriting scrutiny, it could gum up the works initially and slow loan processing, but it’s really just the codification of things that are already in place.”
January 10, 2014: “These 4 New Rules Can Stop You from Buying a Home”, a Fiscal Times item by Laura Shin with a review of some of the new mortgage rules from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“Over the last couple of years, lending underwriting standards have been tight in the way of verifying income, assets and requiring a down payment and providing multiple documentation streams, and not allowing you all kinds of budget-stretching flexibilities,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH, a mortgage information website.:
What the Changes Really Mean
The new rules will still affect the market, Gumbinger of HSH says: “Any time there’s a rule change, it adds some cost to the origination of a mortgage, so there’s likely to be some increase in fees. Ultimately costs will rise to borrowers “but not by much.”
Those who get paid seasonally, earn big annual bonuses, or the self-employed may also find it more challenging to meet these new standards, says Gumbinger.
January 9, 2013: “The forecast for housing in 2014: Higher prices, rates”, a Baltimore Sun an outlook column by Jamie Smith Hopkins included a forward-looking statement from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“There are still challenges, but I think all in all, we should have a pretty solid housing market in 2014,” said Keith T. Gumbinger, a vice president at mortgage information site HSH.com.
One of those challenges: Buyers shouldn’t count on mortgage rates in the 4 percent range.
Rates for 30-year fixed-rate products were hovering around 4.5 percent at the start of the year, up from 3.3 percent a year earlier. Gumbinger and others think 5 percent or above is likely later this year, decreasing buying power – one of the reasons they expect a smaller increase in sale prices nationally.
The Federal Reserve decided in December to begin reducing its $85 billion a month bond-buying spree, which helped keep rates low. Subtracting $10 billion from those monthly purchases will add some pressure to mortgage rates, Gumbinger said. So will the healing economy.
January 9, 2014: “Home buyers and sellers buckle up”, a Los Angeles Daily News a Gregory Wilcox story on market conditions that included a quote from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s VP:
“Mortgage rates have been steady to slightly firmer in recent weeks but remain in familiar territory,” Keith Gumbinger, vice president of rate tracker HSH.com said in an email. “The warmer economy and less aggressive Federal Reserve are keeping rates pretty firm at the moment.”
January 9, 2014: “Home loan rates level off; 30-year fixed at 4.51%”, a Los Angeles Times a market update from E. Scott Reckard with some news for mortgage borrowers from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s VP:
Given the tight underwriting standards already in place in the market, the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau rules may not do much to further restrict credit availability — but they don’t do much to enhance it either, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of the rate-tracking firm HSH.com.
“Lenders have been deeply scrutinizing borrower applications for several years, requiring plenty of documentation and doing their best to make certain that borrowers can afford the loan,” Gumbinger said in an HSH report on rates.”Until Friday, that’s been a kind of market-enforced discipline.”
January 8, 2014: “Why 2014 is the year to get out of debt”, a CNNMoney.com Melanie Hicken’s piece about how to plan for changes in 2014 with context from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
Long-term interest rates have already risen in anticipation of the Fed’s decision, so there likely won’t be a rapid spike in mortgage rates, which are already more than a percentage point higher than last year’s historic lows. Still, prospective borrowers could see mortgage rates reach more than 5% this year as the economy continues to strengthen, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president at mortgage information site HSH.com.
But many other consumer loans should remain cheap since they are tied to short-term interest rates, which the Fed has committed to keeping near zero.
January 2, 2014: “4 Reasons You Shouldn’t Worry Over Rising Mortgage Rates”, a Yahoo Finance Mandi Woodruff column about mortgage rates with both some outlook and historical references from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:
“I don’t think there’s any reason to panic,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage rate tracker HSH.com. “Buying a home will be somewhat more expensive, but I don’t think it’s going to be a matter of ‘Oh, I’m losing so much ground that I have to go out and buy [a home] right now.’”
Historical context is important. A little over a decade ago, the lowest average rate for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage was around 5.24%, Gumbinger notes. It’s easy to forget that when rates fell so dramatically following the housing crash.
“Even if we do start to see 5% rates appearing in 2014, rates will absolutely remain favorable [to buyers],” he says.
You can see other prominent HSH.com news mentions for 2013 here.