October Closing Rates Reach 2018 High

Sorohan, Mike msorohan@mba.org

November 27, 2018

Ellie Mae, Pleasanton, Calif., said closing rates for all loans increased to 72.2 percent in October, the highest point in 2018.

The company's monthly Origination Insight Report said closings increased from 71.7 percent the month prior. Closing rates on refinances increased slightly to 64.9 percent in October, up from 64.4 percent the month prior, while closing rates on purchases held steady at 76.4 percent for the second consecutive month.

"As interest rates continue to rise, the percentage of adjustable-rate mortgages is increasing as homebuyers are looking to take advantage of the best rates from their lenders," said Jonathan Corr, president and CEO of Ellie Mae. "Additionally, FICO scores remain the highest we've seen in 2018, indicating that lenders are not yet loosening credit availability to attract the shrinking refinance market."

Other October highlights:

--Time to close all loans increased to 45 days in October, up from 44 days in September. Time to close a purchase loan increased to 46 days, up from 45 days in September, while time to close a refinance increased to 43 days in October, up from 42 the month prior.

--The percentage of purchase loans dropped to 68 percent of total loans from 71 percent the month prior. Refinances represented 32 percent of total loans in October.

--Overall FICO scores remained steady at 727 in October for the second month. LTV held at 79 for the third month while DTI increased to 26/39.

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