April New Home Purchase Mortgage Applications Increased 15.6 Percent

Adam DeSanctis
(202) 557-2727

WASHINGTON, D.C. (May 16, 2019) - The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) Builder Application Survey (BAS) data for April 2019 shows mortgage applications for new home purchases increased 15.6 percent from a year ago. Compared to March 2019, applications increased by 3 percent. This change does not include any adjustment for typical seasonal patterns.

"There was a healthy increase in new home purchase activity in April, boosted by the strong economic and employment conditions seen in the first quarter of 2019," said Joel Kan, MBA's Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting. "Applications for new home purchases increased, as did our estimate for new home sales. After two months of declines, MBA estimates that April new home sales were 10 percent higher than last April and reached the highest annual pace since this survey's inception in 2013."

MBA estimates new single-family home sales were running at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 722,000 units in April 2019, 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 April is an increase of 6.8 percent from the March pace of 676,000 units. On an unadjusted basis, MBA estimates that there were 69,000 new home sales in April 2019, an increase of 4.5 percent from 66,000 new home sales in March.

By product type, conventional loans composed 70.7 percent of loan applications, FHA loans composed 17.1 percent, RHS/USDA loans composed 0.6 percent and VA loans composed 11.5 percent. The average loan size of new homes increased from $331,794 in March to $338,745 in April.

MBA's Builder Application 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.