February New Home Purchase Mortgage Applications Increased 4.6 Percent Year over Year
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WASHINGTON, D.C. (March 13, 2018) - The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) Builder Applications Survey (BAS) data for February 2018 shows mortgage applications for new home purchases increased 4.6 percent compared to February 2017. Compared to January 2018, applications increased by 3 percent. This change does not include any adjustment for typical seasonal patterns.
"Mortgage applications for new homes continued to grow in February on a year over year basis, although at a slower pace of just under 5 percent, as brisk activity in January likely pulled forward some buyer activity," said Lynn Fisher, MBA Vice President of Research and Economics. "Combined, applications in January and February were up by 11 percent relative the same period last year. On a seasonally adjusted annual basis, our February estimate of new home sales based on mortgage applications came in at 632,000, ahead of the January Census estimate of 593,000 new homes sales, and back on trend following an uptick from hurricane-related rebuilding."
By product type, conventional loans composed 70.8 percent of loan applications, FHA loans composed 15.7 percent, RHS/USDA loans composed 1.1 percent and VA loans composed 12.4 percent. The average loan size of new homes decreased from $338,918 in January to $338,078 in February.
The MBA estimates new single-family home sales were running at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 632,000 units in February 2018, based on data from the BAS. The new home sales estimate is derived using mortgage application information from the BAS, as well as assumptions regarding market coverage and other factors.
The seasonally adjusted estimate for February is a decrease of 9.7 percent from the January pace of 700,000 units. On an unadjusted basis, the MBA estimates that there were 55,000 new home sales in February 2018, an increase of 1.9 percent from 54,000 new home sales in January.
MBA's Builder Applications Survey tracks application volume from mortgage subsidiaries of home builders across the country. Utilizing this data, as well as data from other sources, MBA is able to provide an early estimate of new home sales volumes at the national, state, and metro level. This data also provides information regarding the types of loans used by new home buyers. Official new home sales estimates are conducted by the Census Bureau on a monthly basis. In that data, new home sales are recorded at contract signing, which is typically coincident with the mortgage application.
For additional information on MBA's Builder Applications Survey, please click here.