December 31, 2011–”Refinancing Gets Even More Attractive,” a Wall Street Journal article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

The average interest rate on a 30-year mortgage fell to 4.05% for the week ended Dec. 23, the lowest in 60 years, according to HSH Associates, a mortgage-data firm. And rates on jumbo mortgages—private loans that in most parts of the country are larger than $417,000—also have hit new lows, averaging 4.61%.

November 30, 2011–”Sizing Up HARP 2.0,” a Smart Money article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

That’s not the worst of it, say experts: Some borrowers might not be able to qualify at all. The program requires that borrowers have missed no more than one payment during the past year and none during the past six months, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates, a mortgage-data firm.

Many homeowners who qualified for the existing HARP program were turned down because lenders were unwilling to take on that risk, says Gumbinger.

Is it worth it? Gumbinger points out that qualifying homeowners stand to save thousands of dollars over the life of the loan by refinancing to a lower rate. However, the program does not reduce mortgage principal, so even after successfully refinancing, borrowers will still remain underwater, he says.

November 06, 2011–”Should I Do a Cash-In Refinance?” a Smart Money article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

“If property prices should fall, his additional commitment of equity could be wiped out and…may be unrecoverable,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates, which tracks mortgage data.

November 03, 2011–”U.S. Mortgage Rates Fall With 30-Year at 4%, Freddie Mac Says,” a Bloomberg article by Prashant Gopal, quoting HSH.com:

“Record-low interest rates take time to permeate down to folks making decisions to buy homes,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a loan-data firm in Pompton Plains, New Jersey. “If rates remain at this level, some improvement is to be expected.”

October 24, 2011, “Will New Lending Program Raise Rates?” a Smart Money article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

But while the plan is expected to remove other hurdles from the refinancing process, such as appraisals and some underwriting requirements, experts say the likely boost in demand for refinancing could lead to higher mortgage rates and longer waiting periods for homeowners. “It’s going to be a problem to some degree,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at mortgage-data firm HSH Associates.

October 19, 2011–”Some students consider buying property over renting,” an article from The Daily Iowan by Rishabh R. Jain, quoting HSH.com:

According to HSH.com, 15-year fixed rate mortgages have gone down from about 6 percent in October 2008 to just over 3 percent in September.

October 18, 2011–”Refinancing mortgages could get easier,” a San Francisco Chronicle article by Carolyn Said, quoting HSH.com:

Some politicians have suggested, “let’s refi everybody, no fees, let the investors just eat it, and the banks not make any money,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage-information website HSH Associates. “That’s not the way the world works. It wouldn’t be a blanket refi for everybody.”

October 16, 2011–”Should I Pay Down My Mortgage,” a Smart Money article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

Keith Gumbinger, vice president at mortgage tracking firm HSH Associates, says you’re probably better off saving the extra money rather than using it to prepay your mortgage. Here’s why: Gumbinger says you don’t need to cure your mortgage deficit right now.

October 13, 2011–”Why Mortgage Rates Are Rising,” a U.S. News & World Report article by Meg Handley, quoting HSH.com:

“The market has become accustomed to bad (economic) news driving rates down. When the data isn’t all that bad, some money creeps out of safe havens (usually Treasuries) and back into the equity market,” Keith Gumbinger, president of mortgage-information site HSH.com, wrote in an E-mail. “That usually comes at the expense of yields on bonds and by proxy, mortgage rates.”

October 13, 2011–”Mortgage Rates for 30-Year Loans Climb From Lowest on Record to 4.12%,” a Bloomberg article by Prashant Gopal, quoting HSH.com:

“The economic news has not been nearly as bleak as we’ve become accustomed to,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a loan-data firm in Pompton Plains, New Jersey. “Money has crept its way out of the safe havens of Treasuries and back into equities and there’s been a slight lift in interest rates as a result.”

October 07, 2011–”Mortgage rates at all-time lows, but few qualify,” a San Francisco Chronicle article by Carolyn Said, quoting HSH.com:

Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage info website HSH Associates, had similar thoughts.

“The price of mortgage money continues to be at fantastic levels, but that’s not the issue,” he said. “Fantastic interest rates are great, but there are many, many borrowers who simply cannot access them.”

October 06, 2011–”30-year mortgage rates fall below 4% for the first time,” a CNN Money article by Les Christie, quoting HSH.com:

“Record low rates, blah, blah, blah: We’ve already heard this,” said Keith Gumbinger of HSH Associates, a mortgage information provider. “Other than the price of money, nothing else has happened.”

Given the nation’s faltering recovery, the turmoil in Europe and the struggling housing market, the downward trend in mortgage rates is natural, according to Gumbinger.

“The lowest mortgage rates come at the bleakest periods,” he said.

October 06, 2011–”30-year mortgage rate falls to 3.94%,” a Daily Record article by Michael Diamond, quoting HSH.com:

The rock-bottom rates are the side-effect of a poor economic climate, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a Pompton Plains based company that tracks trends in mortgage rates. Buyers and homeowners looking to refinance can follow HSH’s research at www.hsh.com.

October 05, 2011–”How Low Can You Go, Mortgage Rates?” a San Francisco Real Estate Examiner article by Cece Blase, quoting HSH.com:

Then the industry website HSH.com has an announcement that might interest you. According to the company’s Weekly Mortgage Rate Radar (that’s a mouthful), the average interest rate on 30-year fixed mortgages are at record lows, having fallen by 2 basis points to 4.11 percent this week for conforming loans, and 4.875 for jumbo-conforming.

October 05, 2011–”New Discounts for Mortgage Borrowers,” a Smart Money article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

But if you’re seeing incentives, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at mortgage-data firm HSH Associates, there might be a catch.

October 02, 2011–”Lenders still keeping credit on a tight leash,” a Boston Globe article by Jay Fitzgerald, quoting HSH.com:

“It’s still tough out there,’’ said Keith T. Gumbinger, vice president a HSH Associates, a financial survey and publishing company in New Jersey. “The market for these loan products is still tight. Many people are wary. Things are marginally loosening up, but not by much.’’

September 30, 2011–”Big mortgages: Harder to get and more expensive,” a CNN Money article by Les Christie, quoting HSH.com (also appearing in the Chicago Tribune):

“Nobody wants to see anything that would cause even a single buyer to change his or her mind,” said Keith Gumbinger of HSH Associates, a provider of mortgage information.

September 29, 2011–”Adjustable Rate Mortgages Make a Comeback,” a Smart Money article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

At a time when interest rates are already at historic lows and the housing market is still sluggish, ARMs are still risky, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates, a mortgage data firm.

The average rate on a so-called 5/1 ARM — which carries a fixed rate for five years before adjusting each following year — is now 2.96% compared to 4.16% for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage, according to HSH Associates, which tracks mortgage data.

September 22, 2011–”Tossing a Lifeline to Housing Market,” a Wall Street Journal article by Nick Timiraos, quoting HSH.com:

“This is a way of saying, ‘We are going to also foster low mortgage rates, and if the market isn’t interested in buying them, well, we will buy them,’ ” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president at financial publisher HSH Associates.

September 22, 2011–”Many shut out on chance to refinance,” a Boston Globe article by Jenifer B. McKim, quoting HSH.com:

“A lot of people that could refinance successfully, a sizeable percentage of folks probably have done so,’’ said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of www.HSH.com, a mortgage information website based in New Jersey. “There are millions of borrowers who would like the chance to refinance but cannot.’’

September 21, 2011–”Mortgage rates expected to slide on new Fed move,” an LA Times article by Tom Petruno, quoting HSH.com:

“It’s absolutely clear they’re targeting mortgages,” Keith Gumbinger, a principal at mortgage data firm HSH Associates in Pompton Plains, N.J., said of the Fed.

September 16, 2011–”Three ways to cut everyday expenses,” a CNN Money article by Ismat Sarah Mangla, quoting HSH.com:

Cut it down: Thanks to the shaky economy, 30-year fixed loans were recently at a record low of 4.31%. So even if you refinanced two years ago — when rates were a point higher — you should run the numbers again (use the refinance calculator at HSH.com).

September 15, 2011–”Mortgage rates drop to new record lows,” a Market Watch article by Andrea Coombes, quoting HSH.com:

A separate weekly survey by HSH.com, a mortgage-data research firm, found that the average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage dropped 8 basis points — the biggest dip in about five weeks — to 4.21%, with an average of 0.27 points paid. (Freddie Mac’s rates require 0.6 to 0.7 points paid. Generally, a lender will offer a lower interest rate if a borrower pays higher points.)

While rates have been hovering near record lows for weeks, thanks in part to negative economic data, the drop this week to new record-low mortgage rates is likely due to two factors, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com.

September 15, 2011–”Mortgage rates hit record low: 30-year fixed nears 4%,” a CNNMoney article by Les Christie, quoting HSH.com:

“It would be hard to continue to forecast record lows week after week,” said Keith Gumbinger of HSH Associates, a publisher of mortgage information. “But there is some expectation that the Federal Reserve will pull something out of its hat next week to make interest rates go down.”

September 14, 2011–”Tough standards make mortgages tough to get,” a USA Today article by Julie Schmit, quoting HSH.com (also appearing in the Tucson Citizen):

It can also take longer to get rid of mortgage insurance on an FHA loan than on a conventional loan, says Keith Gumbinger of mortgage tracker HSH.com.

September 07, 2011–”Bond yields hit record lows on Europe, recession worries,” a USA Today article by John Waggoner, quoting HSH.com:

“It would stand to reason that unless we have a dramatic turnaround, mortgage rates will sport new record lows,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, which tracks mortgage rates.

September 07, 2011–”Young Real Estate Investor Seeks the Best Use for His Extra Cash,” an article by Laura Rowley from AOL’s Daily Finance:

Moreover, even if Buman put the whole $20,000 toward his personal home loan, it might not allow him to eliminate the mortgage insurance payments, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates, a mortgage information publisher, who crunched the numbers for DailyFinance.

August 30, 2011–”Now at Your Local Bank: Hurricane Specials,” a Smart Money article by Kelli B. Grant, quoting HSH.com:

But critics say the timing is premature, at best. “There are still people that are deeply underwater, and I don’t mean in real estate,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates. “No one whose house has five feet of water in it is concerned about getting a home equity loan.”

August 21, 2011–”Housing’s Drag o n Economy May Worsen,” a Bloomberg article by Kathleen M. Howley, quoting HSH.com:

“A lot of people have seen their down payments for a home disappear in the stock market,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a loan-data firm in Pompton Plains, New Jersey. “It served as a reinforcement to the hunker-down mentality that a lot of homebuyers already had.”

August 17, 2011–”Big changes in housing market and financing mean no turnaround in sight,” a Chicago Tribune article by Mary Ellen Podmolik, quoting HSH.com:

“We have this amorphous blob of definition going on out there now,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a publisher of financial information. “We don’t know what the standard is going to be, and with a new standard coming into the marketplace, what will the reaction be. It’s a factor hindering the recovery. The market remains fully in upheaval with very little clarity.”

August 17, 2011–”Interest rates 101: How banks set your rates,” an Associated Press article also appearing in CNBC.com, quoting HSH.com:

The prime rate and federal funds rate don’t necessarily move in lockstep with each other, notes Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a publisher of financial data.

August 15, 2011–”More homeowners shorten mortgage terms,” a USA Today article by Sandra Block, quoting HSH.com:

The counter argument is that these days, the alternatives to paying down your mortgage aren’t very appealing, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a mortgage research firm.

By contrast, reducing the term of your mortgage could save you “tens or even hundreds of thousands of dollars in interest costs,” Gumbinger says.

August 14, 2011–”Refinancing in a volatile economy,” a Contra Costa Times article by Ellen James Martin, quoting HSH.com:

“Because of what’s going on in the economy, refinance opportunities are now excellent,” says Keith Gumbinger, a vice president at HSH Associates, (www.hsh.com), a firm that tracks mortgage rates throughout the country.

As Gumbinger notes, prevailing home loan rates are now in the vicinity of the 55-year low to which they fell in the fall of 2010. But he adds that homeowners seeking to refinance can expect to pay slightly more than those seeking a loan in order to buy a place.

August 11, 2011–”Mortgage rates keep falling: 30-year nears record low,” a CNNMoney article by Les Christie, quoting HSH.com:

Rates could drop even lower, according to Keith Gumbinger of HSH Associates, a provider of loan information.

“Low Treasury interest rates are still not being fully passed through to mortgage borrowers,” he said.

“That argues that mortgage rates could go lower,” said Gumbinger. “Will the spread shrink again, though? That’s hard to say.”

August 09, 2011–”Post-Downgrade, Higher Rates for Borrowers,” a SmartMoney.com article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

For now, the future for home loans is somewhat muddled. Rates on the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rose to 4.44% on average on Monday, slightly up from 4.41% on Friday, according to HSH Associates. And while mortgage rates are influenced by Treasury yields, there are a handful of other factors that could keep rates low even if Treasury yields rise. For now, given high unemployment, a still-sluggish real estate market, and a flagging economy, mortgage rates aren’t likely to spike, Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates, which tracks mortgage rates.

August 09, 2011–”What the debt downgrade means for your mortgage,” a CNNMoney article by Allan Chernoff, quoting HSH.com:

HSH Associates, which surveys lenders, quoted the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage at 4.44% Monday. “We expect to see rates go into the 4.30’s by noon tomorrow,” said Keith Gumbinger, of HSH Associates.

August 09, 2011–”As stocks plunge, consumers face uncertainty,” a San Francisco Chronicle article by Carolyn Said, quoting HSH.com:

“At the moment, the markets are so unnerved that money is roaring into Treasurys as a place to be parked to escape some of this turmoil and that is driving interest rates down,” said Keith Gumbinger of HSH Associates, which tracks mortgage-loan data. “Provided you actually have a job and good credit and a down payment, you’re going to find some of the best mortgage rates in history available to you, but this is a messy, difficult time right now.”

August 08, 2011–”Refinancing window reopens for some,” a MarketWatch article by Amy Hoak, quoting HSH.com:

“The whole concept of cash-in refi isn’t unheard of,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a publisher of consumer loan information. Gumbinger also writes a mortgage newsletter at HSH.com .

But “you’re taking money out of savings and plunking it into an equity situation,” he added. And with falling home prices, there’s “the fear of ‘I’m going to put 10 grand in and it could be gone tomorrow.’”

August 06, 2011–”Is It Time To Refinance,” a Wall Street Journal article by Jessica Silver-Greenberg, quoting HSH.com:

Rates haven’t been this low since before the Federal Reserve began a second round of bond buying known as “quantitative easing,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates, which tracks mortgage data. Now many market watchers are calling for a third round of Fed bond buying.

August 04, 2011–”U.S. Mortgage Rates Fall to 8-Month Low,” a Bloomberg article by Ashwin Seshagiri, quoting HSH.com:

“Two of the most important factors that influence mortgage rates are economic growth and inflation,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a loan-data firm in Pompton Plains, New Jersey. “The numbers show an economy that is stumbling far worse than expected. We’re pretty close to stall speed.”

July 29, 2011–”Nervous local investors watch Washington debt drama,” an Asbury Park Press article by Michael Diamond, quoting HSH.com:

Other borrowers – consumers and businesses, for example – would see higher interest rates too, said Keith Gumbinger, president of HSH Associates, a Pompton Plains company that tracks interest rates.

July 25, 2011–”Debt limit: Here’s a crash course,” an Asbury Park Press article by Michael Diamond, quoting HSH.com:

No one knows, but chances are it wouldn’t be pretty. In the short term, lending likely would slow because banks that own Treasuries would no longer receive that cash to lend back out, said Keith Gumbinger, an analyst with HSH Associates in Pompton Plains, which tracks interest rates.

July 16, 2011–”Big Mortgages Are Back,” a Wall Street Journal article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

Depending on location, jumbo loans typically require a down payment of 20% to 30%, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates—double or triple the typical 10% down payment for a smaller loan.

But borrowers should act quickly. Since lenders won’t be able to sell as many jumbo loans to government-backed agencies—thereby unloading risk—they may not originate as many, says Mr. Gumbinger.

July 15, 2011–”Popular Homeowner Tax Deduction Under Fire,” a U.S. News & World Report article by Meg Handley, quoting HSH.com:

U.S. News talked to mortgage expert Keith Gumbinger, president of mortgage-information site HSH.com, to find out how tapping out on the tax break for homeowners could impact the housing market and economy.

July 14, 2011–”The Appeal of Adjustable Rates,” a New York Times article by Maryann Haggerty, quoting HSH.com:

Keith Gumbinger, a vice president of HSH Associates, a financial publisher in Pompton Plains, N.J., said, “ARMs are good for borrowers with short-term time frames, usually seven years or less.”

“This can include certain first-time borrowers who expect to trade up,” Mr. Gumbinger continued, “such as a single person buying a studio apartment; folks who get transferred, or expect to be, within that time; folks refinancing with just a few more years expected in the old suburban mansion; jumbo mortgage seekers looking for a lower-cost alternative, and even folks who are approaching retirement age who want to seriously improve their cash flow to maximize their retirement accounts.”

July 14, 2011–”Mortgage Rates Fall: 5 Rules for Refinancing,” a CBS MoneyWatch article by Kathy Kristof, quoting HSH.com:

The reason: So called “agency jumbo” loans are being phased out in September, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a loan research firm. These loans are about 0.3% cheaper than loans that can’t be sold into the secondary market.

“If you are thinking about refinancing a loan that falls into that bucket, do not procrastinate,” Gumbinger says. “You have to close the loan before Sept. 20.”

July 14, 2011–”Mortgage rates for U.S. loans fall after weak employment report,” a Bloomberg article by Ashwin Seshagiri, also appearing in the Sen-Sentinel, quoting HSH.com:

“Sentiment in the market has been pretty negative,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a loan-data firm in Pompton Plains, N.J. “There has been a downdraft in rates largely attributed to the poor unemployment reports.”

July 12, 2011–”Riskier Loans Make a Comeback, as Private Firms Take the Field,” a Wall Street Journal article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

While they may embrace slightly riskier borrowers, they require higher down payments, around 40% on average at Athas Capital, compared with roughly 10% for a bank loan, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates.

July 11, 2011–”New loan limits loom on jumbo mortgages,” an MSN article by Marilyn Lewis, quoting HSH.com:

When it comes to large loans, “the time for the dirt-cheap mortgage may be running out,” Keith Gumbinger, a vice president at mortgage research firm HSH Associates, told the Post.

July 05, 2011–”Secrets to getting a mortgage with so-so credit,” a CNNMoney article by Les Christie, quoting HSH.com:

“The belief is that you can’t get a mortgage at all — but you can,” Keith Gumbinger, of the mortgage information provider HSH Associates.

July 04, 2011–”House Hunt: A Place on the Water,” an Eatontown-Tinton Falls Patch slideshow by Scott Greenberg, quoting HSH.com:

In New Jersey, 15-year fixed rate mortgages are below 4 percent, according to HSH.com, which publishes mortgage information.

July 01, 2011–”Seeking Lighter Debt Load, Borrowers Clamor for 15-Year Mortgage,” an American Banker article by Alex Ulam, quoting HSH.com:

Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a mortgage information website, said that in today’s environment some borrowers’ monthly payments may not go up much, if at all.

“Equity is produced in two ways: market appreciation and the retirement of the loan’s balance,” Gumbinger said by email. “Since there isn’t any of the former going on, it goes without saying that the best way to build equity is to retire debt more quickly.”

June 22, 2011–”Fed Leaves Interest Rates Untouched, Consumers Keep the Status Quo,” a Daily Finance article written by Catherine New, quoting HSH.com:

“Inflation appears to have leveled over the last couple of weeks, and the present state of the economy is pretty soft at the moment,” Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage research firm HSH, told DailyFinance. “But I expect it to show somewhat more signs of life as the summer progresses, and rates will start to nudge up as a result.”

June 21, 2011–”Borrowers Wade Back Into Adjustable-Rate Mortgages,” a New York Times Bucks blog article by Tara Siegel Bernard, quoting HSH.com:

The rate on a 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage — that is, a loan where the interest rate is fixed for the first five years and adjusts annually thereafter — is 3.23 percent on average, or about 1.35 percentage points less than a traditional 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, according to HSH.com, which publishes mortgage and consumer loan information.

June 19, 2011–”Understanding mortgages: Look before you leap,” a Daily Herald article by Jean Chatzky, quoting HSH.com:

It’s impossible to get a mortgage right now.

False. This wasn’t part of the Zillow survey, but it’s what Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates, considers the biggest fallacy at the moment. “There’s no doubt that getting a mortgage is more difficult for some audiences and some borrowers right now, but for a lot of people, the mortgage market is still open. Even if you don’t have much in the way of a down payment, you can still get a mortgage — FHA (Federal Housing Administration) will write you one. And if you have bad credit, FHA is available for you all the way down to a FICO score of 580.”

June 15, 2011–”U.S. Homeowners Shift to 15-Year Loan Refinancing to Add Equity,” a Bloomberg article by Prashant Gopal, quoting HSH.com:

Some borrowers who don’t meet minimum equity requirements to refinance are making up the difference with money from their savings accounts, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a loan-data firm in Pompton Plains, New Jersey. Others are completing cash-in refinance deals to avoid mortgage insurance.

June 10, 2011 — “New borrowers opt for discounted home loans,” an International Business Times article, quoting HSH.com:

For example, if buyers intend to use the property primarily as a second home, they’ll pay about the same mortgage rate as a primary residence, says HSH Associates vice president Keith Gumbinger. However, if they plan to get rental income from the property, the property will be treated as an investment, which means they may need to pay as much as 25 percent for the down payment and pay up to one percentage point more in interest, Gumbinger says.

June 09, 2011 — “Changes in Refinancing,” a New York Times article written by MaryAnn Haggerty, quoting HSH.com:

Assuming your credit scores are strong, deciding whether to jump in as well may be a matter of numbers; there are plenty of Web calculators to test the what-ifs, like the ones at HSH.com.

June 07, 2011 – HSH.com’s VP Keith Gumbinger was interviewed this morning along with Diana Olick on a CNBC segment titled “Serial Re-Financers.” Here’s the link: http://video.cnbc.com/gallery/?video=3000026006

June 02, 2011 — “Don’t get trapped in an ARM,” a CNNMoney article by Beth Braverman and Sarah Max, quoting HSH.com:

No wonder: Rates for ARMs that reset after five years, the most common variety, were recently a mere 3.69%, vs. 4.99% for a 30-year fixed loan. That’s the widest gap since 2003, according to HSH Associates.

May 27, 2011 — “Home Loans: A Call to ARMs?” a Wall Street Journal article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

But now, as interest rates hover near historic lows, the “spread” between the rates on the most popular adjustable and fixed-rate loans is on pace to be the widest it has been in eight years, according to HSH Associates, which tracks mortgage rates.

The average rate on a so-called 5/1 ARM—which carries a fixed rate for five years, then adjusts every year thereafter—is currently 3.4%, nearly 0.4 percentage point lower than January’s rate, according to data compiled by HSH Associates. The average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is 4.72%, just 0.22 point lower than in January.

May 24, 2011 — “Quirky Homes: A Tough Sell for Lenders,” a MainStreet article by Jeff Brown, quoting HSH.com:

But be careful—today’s jittery lenders often reject applications involving unique homes, fearing they’ll be hard to resell in the event of a foreclosure, according to HSH Associates, a mortgage data firm.

“Before you commit to buying a quirky home, or refinancing the one you already own, know ahead of time what heartache you may run into,” HSH says.

May 15, 2011 — “Jumbo loan amounts slashed,” a Boston Herald article by Thomas Grillo, quoting HSH.com:

Still, Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates, a New Jersey-based firm that tracks mortgage interest rates, said the change should not have a huge impact on the residential real estate market. He said buyers seeking jumbo mortgages will see about a 1/2percent difference in a rates. “That’s not a deal killer.”

May 15, 2011 — “Are we facing the end of the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage?” a LA Times article by Lew Sichelman, quoting HSH.com:

According to HSH Associates, a mortgage information service, the spread between loans that conform to Fannie and Freddie’s limit and those that are over it is 54 basis points. (A basis point is 1/100th of a percentage point.) But the gap was as wide as 180 basis points as recently as December 2008.

May 11, 2011 — “Stern Advice: Here comes that $400 billion mortgage reset,” a Reuters article by Linda Stern, quoting HSH.com:

That means that someone who originally took out an average 6.35 percent mortgage five years ago will see their rate adjust to the neighborhood of 3 percent, reports Keith Gumbinger of HSH Associates, a research firm.

On a $300,000 loan, their principal and interest payment would drop from the $1,867 they had been paying to $1,329, says Gumbinger. And who couldn’t use an extra $500 or so a month?

May10, 2011 — “Overcoming the Mortgage Obstacle,” a U.S. News & World Report article by Meg Handley, quoting HSH.com:

“Borrowers have a little bit of a misconception that you can’t get mortgage financing,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage information web site HSH.com. “The mentality of ‘It’s going to be too hard for me to get financing, so I’m not going to bother even looking,’ is persistent.”

The prominence of government-sponsored enterprises (GSEs) such as Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in the mortgage market has further complicated the picture. Gumbinger estimates that 90 percent of home loans are backed by Fannie, Freddie, or the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). There is virtually no private loan market to speak of. “Because Fannie and Freddie so dominate the marketplace, until they make a move or make a change to loosen, nothing is really going to change,” Gumbinger says.

May 09, 2011 — “Will Home Prices Continue to Fall?” a Time article by Stephen Gandel, quoting HSH.com:

One of the biggest drivers of the record rise in housing affordability is the drop in mortgage rates. Indeed a report out from HSH Associates which tracks mortgage rates, shows that the rate on the average 30-year fixed mortgage at 4.99% is the lowest is has been all year.

May 06, 2011 — “Market climate warms for house hunters,” a U.S. News & World Report article by Meg Handley, also appearing in the Chicago Tribune, quoting HSH.com:

Although there are signs that the credit markets may be loosening a bit, even some of the most creditworthy consumers may be unable to snag the best interest rates on mortgages. Consumers with lower credit scores could also face higher down payment requirements, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage information website hsh.com.

“You’ll need good credit to get the best pricing,” he said. “We’re talking about a FICO 740 or above for the best possible pricing.”

May 01, 2011 — “Adjustable rate mortgages are making a comeback,” a NorthJersey.com article by Donna Rolando, quoting HSH.com:

“ARMs did get a bad reputation during the downturn,” said Keith T. Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com in Pompton Plains, a financial publisher, “although they have been around for 30 years.”

April 28, 2011 — “What Moves Mortgage Rates?” a U.S. News & World Report article by Meg Handley, quoting HSH.com:

“It’s hard to say exactly how much investor reaction you get to any specific event,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage information website HSH.com. “The kind of event matters very much as to the type of response you get.”

April 21, 2011 — “Chatzky: Homebuying fees can nail you for big bucks,” an article appearing in the Richmond Times-Dispatch, quoting HSH.com:

In some cases, you might have to pay points to lower your interest rate in order to qualify for the mortgage amount you need, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates. If you have a choice, you want to look at how long you’re planning to stay in the home — so you don’t put down too much money upfront and then move before you grab your savings — and whether paying points would compromise your liquidity.

April 18, 2011 — “The Ultimate Spring Home Buying Guide,” a U.S. News & World Report article by Meg Handley, quoting HSH.com:

Consumers with lower credit scores could also face higher down payment requirements, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage information website HSH.com. “You’ll need good credit to get the best pricing,” he says. “We’re talking about a FICO 740 or above for the best possible pricing.”

March 29, 2011 — “World events affect your mortgage rate,” a MarketWatch article by Amy Hoak, quoting HSH.com’s VP Keith Gumbinger and our contributing writer Dan Green:

Or, the leveling off could also signal something else: Investors are getting past the “initial shock/panic/concern which accompanies such events,” Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a publisher of consumer loan information, wrote in an email.

“Fear of thousands dead has turned into reality; fear of a nuclear disaster has turned into a reality, fear that civil unrest in any number of countries would turn deadly has become a reality. We’re passing the fear and adapting to the reality,” he wrote, “and after a period of assessment, this often tends to level off interest rates and see them return to pre-event path (if perhaps with lesser velocity, in some cases).”

That said, mortgage rates still seem to be suppressed somewhat by the effects of recent world events. And if conditions continue to worsen in Japan or the situation deteriorates further in Libya, rates could face more downward pressure, said Dan Green, loan officer with Waterstone Mortgage, in Cincinnati.

March 18, 2011 — “Save $50,000: Chop your mortgage,” a CNNMoney article, also appearing in Money Magazine, which mentions and links to HSH.com’s PMI Calculator:

You should have no problem refinancing if you have at least 20% equity in your home. With less than 20%, some lenders won’t approve a refi, or they’ll require private mortgage insurance, which will add to your monthly costs. To see how much, use this PMI calculator.

March 17, 2011 — “Mortgage Rates on Fixed 30-Year U.S. Loans Fall to Two-Month Low of 4.76%,” a Bloomberg article by Rebecca McClay, quoting HSH.com:

“There’s been a little flight to — I don’t want to say safety — quality,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a publisher of consumer-loan data in Pompton Plains, New Jersey. “As long as trouble remains in the forefront, interest rates are likely to be lower than they otherwise would be.”

March 11, 2011 — “Major changes ahead for mortgage system as U.S. seeks to scale back role in housing,” a Washington Post article by Dina ElBoghdady, quoting HSH.com:

“Investors are willing to accept a lower return if their investment is less risky,” said Keith Gumbinger, a vice president at HSH Associates.

March 08, 2011 — “New Rules for First-Time Home Buyers,” a MarketWatch article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

To cover those losses, banks and the agencies are raising fees on new mortgages, says Keith Gumbinger, a vice president at HSH Associates, which tracks the mortgage market.

February 28, 2011 — “Points or No Points,” a SmartMoney article quoting HSH.com:

In general, you can knock off about 1/4 to 1/8 of a percent off your interest rate for each point you pay, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage information provider HSH Associates.

February 26, 2011 — “Getting a Mortgage Before the Door Shuts,” a Wall Street Journal article by Karen Blumenthal, quoting HSH.com:

“The price of mortgage money is going to go up, and the availability of mortgage money may also be impinged,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates, which tracks mortgage data.

February 25, 2011 — “New Mortgage Rules Change the Game For Brokers, Consumers,” a Mint.com article quoting HSH.com:

“The reality is that new government regulations and changes how business is conducted almost always results in higher costs to the consumer,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH.com, a mortgage research firm based in Pompton Plains, NJ.

February 24, 2011 — “BlackRock’s Purchases of Jumbo Mortgages Raise Prospects for Secondary Market,” an American Banker article by Kate Berry, quoting HSH.com:

Keith Gumbinger, the vice president of HSH Associates, a financial publisher in Pompton Plains, N.J., said hybrid 5/1 ARMs have become “the most viable alternative to the traditional 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage” because of the savings to the borrower.

“Over a five-year period, a borrower wanting a $200,000 loan who chose a 5/1 product would save $12,978 in interest cost while retiring about $3,551 more of the outstanding balance of the loan compared to the 30-year fixed,” Gumbinger said. “Of course, if market conditions should turn unfavorable at the end of the fixed-rate period, a borrower might give all that back (if not more) over time.”

February 24, 2011 — “Mortgage Rates on Fixed 30-Year U.S. Loans Decreases to 4.95%,” a Bloomberg article by Rebecca McClay, quoting HSH.com, also appearing in the San Francisco Chronicle:

“In times of trouble, money runs to places where it can be parked safely, like Treasuries,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates, a publisher of consumer-loan data in Pompton Plains, New Jersey. “Mortgage rates tend to follow that.”

February 20, 2011 — “Mortgages will be scarcer, more expensive,” a San Francisco Chronicle article by Kathleen Pender, quoting HSH.com:

“Each facet of this market is under scrutiny, review or re-regulation,” says Keith Gumbinger, a vice president with HSH Associates. “It may be a good long while” before anyone can say “what the cost of mortgages is going to be, who’s going to make them, who’s going to service them and whether money can be made in this game.”

February 16, 2011 — “Adjustable versus fixed-rate mortgages,” a MarketWatch article by Amy Hoak, quoting HSH.com:

Assuming a $300,000 loan amount, a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage at 5.13% means a monthly payment of $1,634, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a publisher of consumer loan information. Interest paid after five years: $74,053.

Compare that to a 5/1 hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage at 3.83%. For the first five years, the monthly payment would be $1,403, and you’d pay $54,771 in interest over those five years, Gumbinger said.

February 12, 2011 — “Obama administration proposals to reduce federal role in housing market,” a Washington Post article by Dina ElBoghdady, quoting HSH.com:

Based on this week’s average rate, a borrower who takes out a $650,000 loan today would be charged 5.25 percent interest, according to HSH.com. If the lower loan limits were in effect, the same borrower would be charged 5.72 percent. That would increase the monthly payment by $191.52.

February 11, 2011 — “Mortgage proposals could cost borrowers, some say,” a MarketWatch article by Amy Hoak, quoting HSH.com:

While broad changes to the government-sponsored entities could bring higher costs to consumers, mortgage costs have been going up already anyway, in the form of loan-level price adjustments from Fannie and Freddie and fee increases from the Federal Housing Administration, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, a publisher of mortgage and consumer loan information.

And with a private mortgage market nearly non-existent today, it’s far from clear exactly how — and when — policies will change, he said.

February 11, 2011 — “White House’s unwritten mortgage memo: Act now,” a Reuters article by Linda Stern quoting HSH.com:

“Rates are probably on the rise, due to the increases in fees,” said Keith Gumbinger of HSH Associates, a mortgage research firm. “But will the borrowing process get better, faster or easier as a result of reforms? No.”

“If you can effect a transaction now, it’s probably not a bad idea,” Gumbinger said.

February 11, 2011 — “Average 30-year mortgage rate rises past 5%,” a USA Today article by Julie Schmit, quoting HSH.com:

“Nobody is welcoming a rise in interest rates but it’s not enough to kill purchases in the housing market,” says Keith Gumbinger of mortgage researcher HSH.com.

February 11, 2011 — “Why You Should Buy that Home Now,” a MarketWatch article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

Later in the summer, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which is expected to make mortgages a top priority, could make the process of originating a mortgage more expensive for the lender by requiring, for example, more personnel to check documentation, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates, which tracks the mortgage market. And those costs will likely be passed along to borrowers as well.

February 10, 2011 — “Mortgage rates break 5%,” a CNNMoney article by Les Christie, quoting HSH.com:

“That’s a pretty appreciable increase and the pressure is upward at the moment,” said Keith Gumbinger of HSH Associates, whose own barometer of mortgage rates has been rising quickly as well.

These rising rates will most impact those trying to refinance, rather than those trying to buy. Homebuyers tend to focus on other aspects of the purchase, according to Gumbinger, like whether they like the home and, especially, home prices.

February 10, 2011 — “Calculating the Annual Percentage Rate,” a New York Times article by Lynnley Browning, quoting HSH.com (+graph):

HSH Associates, a loan-data publisher, has an A.P.R. calculator for adjustable mortgages on its site to provide approximations.

February 07, 2011 — “4 Traditional Money Rules to Break Now,” a SmartMoney.com article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

What’s more, a 30-year mortgage, rather than a 15-year one, is one good way to build a savings safety net, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates, which tracks the mortgage market. On average, monthly payments are 20% to 30% smaller with a 30-year mortgage, he says. That extra money could be stashed in savings for a rainy day or to pay the mortgage if you lose your job.

February 07, 2011 — “Home equity lending is back?” a Newsday article by Gigi Berman Aharoni, quoting HSH.com:

The ability to borrow against your home with a home equity loan or line of credit is picking up some speed, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH Associates, a company that tracks the mortgage market.

February 04, 2011 — “Housing finance changes likely to mean less government backing for some buyers,” a Washington Post article by Zachary A. Goldfarb and Brady Dennis, quoting HSH.com, also appearing in AZCentral.com:

Keith Gumbinger, a vice president at mortgage research firm HSH Associates, said he expects that borrowers who took out loans between $625,500 and $729,750 would pay “slightly more expensive rates” if the current proposal is enacted, “but jumbos were always slightly more expensive.”

February 03, 2011 — “Online Shopping Made Easier,” a New York Times article by Lynnley Browning, quoting HSH.com:

Keith T. Gumbinger, the vice president of HSH Associates, which tracks mortgage rates and provides rate quotes from lenders, says that while there is plenty of mortgage information out there, much of what has been available on the Web until recently is “broad but shallow.”

“Consumers often can’t get some of the more technically oriented stuff,” he said, citing explanations of when an adjustable-rate mortgage actually adjusts, or prepayment penalties apply.

February 03, 2011 — “Home Equity Lending Is Back,” a SmartMoney article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com:

For qualified borrowers willing to take that risk, the price of the borrowed money is steep. Average interest rates on home-equity loans and HELOCs are 7.15% and 5.22%, respectively, according to HSH Associates, which tracks the mortgage market. That’s lower than they were a year ago, but still significantly higher than, for example, the 4.2% average rate on car loans offered by dealerships and the 4.24% average rate on 15-year mortgages.

February 02, 2011 — “Costs for home mortgage rise as Fannie, Freddie hike fees,” a USA Today article by Julie Schmit, quoting HSH.com:

Now, they’ll face the smallest fee, 0.25% of the loan amount, if they put down less than 25%. “For the first time, these fees apply to virtually everybody,” says Keith Gumbinger of mortgage research firm HSH.com. For single-family home buyers and standard refinances, the fees will hit 88% of the borrower categories set by Fannie and Freddie, up from 70%, he says.

January 25, 2011 — “8 reasons to invest in your home,” a Money Magazine article written by Josh Garskof, quoting HSH.com:

“The Fed doesn’t want you to save — it wants you to put your dollars into circulation,” said Keith Gumbinger, mortgage market analyst at HSH.com.

January 25, 2011 — “When To Walk Away From A Bad Mortgage,” a Get Rich Slowly post written by Sierra Black, quoting HSH.com:

Still, I thought my friend must have other options, so I called up mortgage expert Keith Gumbinger at HSH.com. Gumbinger had some great suggestions for what to do when you’re facing overwhelming mortgage debt.

Gumbinger agreed that bailing out of a mortgage sometimes makes good financial sense — but the consequences for doing so are steep. “You can certainly walk away and let it go to involuntary foreclosure,” Gumbinger said. “That’s your ultimate hammer. But there are consequences in the rest of your life.” Walking away from a mortgage should be the absolute last resort.

January 11, 2011 — “Jumbo Mortgages: Price Differences Are Shrinking,” a New York Times article written by Jennifer Saranow Schultz, quoting HSH.com:

Technically, according to Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a “jumbo” mortgage is one with a loan amount above that which can be sold to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

In most parts of the country, he said, a conforming loan can be no larger than $417,000.

According to Mr. Gumbinger of HSH.com, the spread has been in the range of the mid-to-upper 60 basis points recently, “among the narrowest gaps since the onset of the crisis” except for a few weeks in April 2010.

January 11, 2011 — “Great Time to Do Home Improvements? Now!,” a CBSnews.com article by Amanda Gengler, quoting HSH.com:

Keep in mind that, in 2007, rates hit as high as 8.25 percent, according to HSH.com. So, compared to that, today’s rates are great. And with the typical bank account and money fund paying far less than 1 percent, drawing down your savings barely costs you anything in lost income, so you’re not giving up that much interest.

January 10, 2011 — “8 keys to 2011’s mortgage market,” MSN published HSH.com’s 2011 Outlook for Mortgage Rates and the Mortgage Market. (MSN also linked to “4 experts forecast 2011 housing market” and “Crazy to refi into an ARM? Not at all.”

January 10, 2011 — “Getting More Help With Your Down Payment,” a SmartMoney article by AnnaMaria Andriotis, quoting HSH.com (also featured in the Boston Globe and ConsumerAffairs.com):

“Borrowers who don’t put any of their skin in the game – or very little of it – are more risky,” says Keith Gumbinger, a vice president at HSH.com, which tracks mortgage data.

January 07, 2011 — “Office of Housing Hiring Delayed Until March, At Least,” a FINS article by Julie Steinberg, quoting HSH.com:

“Since the economy is improving, interest rates are not likely to decline to any real degree. We’re probably not going back to the 56-year lows we saw in October any time soon,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of the mortgage-data website HSH.com. “The business coming in the door has slackened. They’re probably going to be okay.”

January 01, 2011 — “13 Fast Money-Saving Fixes,” an article appearing in the January 2011 edition of Family Circle magazine, by Kelli B. Grant:

Rates are at historic lows for fixed and adjustable-rate loans, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at the mortgage-data website HSH.com. Pull out the HUD-1 form from your current mortgage—the fee will be a good indication of what the refi cost will be, he says. Then use a calculator at Bankrate.com or HSH.com to see how many months it’ll take to recoup that—as well as the total amount you’ll save in interest over the life of the loan.

To view our media mentions from last year, be sure to check out our “HSH in the News 2010” page.

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