December 30, 2016: “How to invest in the age of Trump”, an Asbury Park Press investing outlook by Michael L. Diamond included some context provided by Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

For businesses and consumers, the higher interest rates will make it more expensive to borrow money, even though they remain at historic lows. For investors, it means bonds they might have in their portfolio are worth less since the government and companies are selling new bonds that offer higher interest rates.

Higher interest rates raises another option: Bank CDs. But banks have yet to respond with higher rates, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a Riverdale-based research group that tracks interest rates.

“With banks still flush with cash, there’s not much need for them to raise interest rates on CDs and deposits,” Gumbinger said.

December 17, 2016: “Rising Rates Ripple Through Mortgage Market”, a Walll Street Journal Newswire market update by AnnaMaria Andriotis included some comments by HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

The most immediate pain on the home-loan front will be felt by homeowners shopping for home-equity lines of credit, or Helocs. These are typically used by people who want to borrow against the value of their home for renovations or other purposes.

Interest rates for these lines, which are typically variable, have already increased, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at mortgage-information website HSH.com. Existing Heloc borrowers will see an increase in their interest rate and monthly payments within the next one to three billing cycles, he said.

December 15, 2016: “Why a Higher Interest Rate Doesn’t Necessarily Mean You’ll Pay More”, a NBC News consumer advisory by Jean Chatzky contained a little-known fact provided by Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

Credit Card User
If you read your card agreement closely, you’ll notice that the interest you’re paying has a floor. For example, if your contract stipulates that you pay prime (currently 3.5 percent) plus 7 percent, with a floor of 12 percent, that means you should be paying 10.5 percent today but are actually paying 12 percent.

That explains why “it could be a while before many borrowers see much by way of effect,” according to HSH’s Gumbinger.

Meantime, if you’ve got credit card debt you’re looking to pay off, a zero percent balance transfer offer is still going to be the way to go.

December 1, 2016: “Mortgage Rates are Climbing . . . What Now?”, an MReport review of mortgage market conditions by Brian Honea contained analysis provided by Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s VP:

Keith Gumbinger, VP at HSH.com, said the velocity of rates has slowed in the last two weeks after a big bump in the week following the election indicates that the correction in rates may be ending—and that rates are still relatively near historic lows.

“The immediate impact is that refinance activity (which had already been petering out) will pretty much come to a standstill (excepting relatively small audiences comprised of those with old ‘high’ rate mortgages who are only now becoming aligned with today’s underwriting standards (credit score/equity/documentation,etc),” Gumbinger said. “As well, now that it’s the holiday season, it’s a solid bet that purchase activity will be quieter than it otherwise would be if rates hadn’t legged up in recent weeks.”

Gumbinger continued, “For a longer forward-looking period, and if rates do continue upward, refinance activity won’t be able to come back, curtailing originations to a fair degree in 2017. However, and despite firmer rates, purchase activity should remain solid; I don’t think there will be a real effect on purchase activity until rates are closing in on the 5 percent mark. The slightly firmer rates in place now are no major deterrent for someone who wants to buy a home, even if it may see them need to look at slightly less-costly homes. To the degree that it puts more marginal buyers on the sidelines for a time, it may mean that inventory levels of available homes may have a chance to fill up a bit, which in turn may temper price increases should they get beyond “normal” levels. However, supplies are running well short of normal, so that’s not likely to happen quickly—and it will take a while until even normal levels are reached at this point.”

November 17, 2016:“What you should do about exploding mortgage rates”, a Yahoo Finance consumer advice story by Ethan Wolff-Mann included some market context proviide by Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s VP:

But no one really needs to freak out, according to Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage data site HSH.com.

“In reality, [applications] have been on a downtrend since June/July,” he told Yahoo Finance in an email. Since the summer, rates had already been firming in anticipation to moves by the Fed—the election has just gave them a push.

Still, not everyone will run from refinancing, says Gumbinger, since 4% isn’t actually that high when you take a step back—plenty of people with 5.25% loans will still prefer saving 1.25% through refinancing. “However, homeowners who need or needed a rate close to 3.5% to make their opportunity to refinance worthwhile are simply going to remain on the sidelines.”

Again, a 4% mortgage rate is not “high” in relative terms. APR for a 30-year mortgage was around 4.5% in January 2014, and 6.6% just before the financial crisis in 2007. And if you go back to 1981, it was 18%. “Present levels are certainly higher than those seen over the summer, but aren’t high by any historical stretch of the imagination,” Gumbinger says.

Rates are also just one part of the puzzle. “It is a key to how much mortgage a borrower can carry, but the 0.25% to 0.375% rise in rates isn’t enough to change the equation greatly,” says Gumbinger. “After all, the difference in monthly payments on a $200,000 loan with a rate of 3.75% compared with 4% is just $29 per month.” Not necessarily enough to meaningfully throw a homebuyer’s plans off the rails.

“More important than rate is the ability of a wannabe homebuyer to be able to find a property they love in a place they want to live with a price they can afford,” says Gumbinger.

Besides the uncertainty about the election and the Fed’s expected move on interest rates, Gumbinger muses that the decline in mortgage applications could be from the fact that the market is sliding into the beginning of the holiday season, a quiet time on the calendar: “The rise in rates in the last week may simply be enough to start the quiet a little earlier than usual this year.”

November 17, 2016: “How the presidential election has impacted mortgage rates”, a CNN Wire story about mortgage market conditions featured a review of current and expected market conditions from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

The initial bump in mortgage rates last week was more of a knee-jerk reaction to the election results from the market, explained Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com.

But now concerns over President-elect Donald Trump’s proposed spending and tax cuts, are fueling volatility in the bond market.

“The prospect for faster growth comes with faster inflation, and even though not a stitch of policy has been written, markets are preparing for what is likely to come in the months ahead,” said Gumbinger.

While mortgage rates increased 10 percent, they are still close to historic lows.

“It is always important to keep perspective: If you look back, rates are only as bad as when we began 2016,” noted Gumbinger.

The Federal Reserve is set to meet in December and is expected to raise the federal funds rate, which is the short-term interest rate it uses to lend money to banks.

While an increase is heavily anticipated, Gumbinger said he will be paying attention to the central bank’s language.

“It’s more about what they say about future policy. If the message is a soothing one, markets won’t react very much. If it’s a more hawkish tone, then you will see markets reposition for the next interest rate increase.”

November 17, 2016: “Mortgage rates jump post-election”, a CNN/Money market bulletin by Kathryn Vasel included some analysis and commentary from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s VP:

The higher rate means the monthly payment on a $250,000 home loan with a 20% down payment would be $948 — $42 more than it would have been last week.
The initial bump in mortgage rates last week was more of a knee-jerk reaction to the election results from the market, explained Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com.
But now concerns over President-elect Donald Trump’s proposed spending and tax cuts, are fueling volatility in the bond market.
“The prospect for faster growth comes with faster inflation, and even though not a stitch of policy has been written, markets are preparing for what is likely to come in the months ahead,” said Gumbinger.
While mortgage rates increased 10%, they are still close to historic lows. “It is always important to keep perspective: If you look back, rates are only as bad as when we began 2016,” noted Gumbinger.

November 17, 2016: “Here’s how much your credit score affects your mortgage rate”, a Washington Post consumer advisory story by Jonnelle Marte included some comments from HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger:

But once consumers went beyond a certain threshold, the benefits of having a higher score diminished, Smoke found. After a certain point, borrowers need to rely on other factors to improve their rate, such as their income or the type of loan, housing experts say. That is especially true for borrowers with credit scores above 700, they say.
“There are practical limits as to the effect on your mortgage rate vis-à-vis your credit score,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of the mortgage information website HSH.com.

November 15, 2016: “What Surging Interest Rates Mean for Your Credit Cards, Auto, Student and Home Equity Loans”, a Wall Street Journal update on credit conditions by AnnaMaria Andriotis included some context provided by HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger:

Home Equity Lines of Credit

Interest rates on home equity lines of credit are usually pegged to the prime rate. When the Fed decides to again raise rates, possibly as soon as December, rates on new Helocs will go up in lockstep almost immediately.
Borrowers with outstanding Helocs will see rates rise within about two billing cycles, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president at mortgage-info website HSH.com. Most Helocs have variable rates throughout their life.

November 7, 2016: “9 steps to take if you’re planning to buy a home within six months”, a Washington Post financial planning piece by Jonnelle Marte featured some advice from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

This information can help you figure out what price range you should target and what neighborhoods you can buy in, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of the mortgage information website HSH.com. But keep in mind that the prequalification letter doesn’t guarantee the loan. This can also give you more time to make tough decisions about what you absolutely want in a home and what you can do without, Gumbinger says.

October 10, 2016: “Mortgage Rates Today, Monday, Oct. 10: Rates Firm;”, a NerdWallet.com mortgage market update by Hal M. Bundrick, CFP, extracted from HSH.com’s VP Keith Gumbinger’s weekly MarketTrends analysis:

After Friday’s tepid jobs report, lower mortgage rates would commonly be expected — but compared with the larger bond market, rates have been swimming against the tide.
“Influential underlying interest rates have been moving higher in recent days, but the effect on mortgage rates has been muted,” Keith T. Gumbinger, vice president of HSH Associates, wrote in an analysis Friday evening.

September 19, 2016: “Fed Week: What a Rate Increase Would Mean for Borrowers”, a Wall Street Journal interest rate advisory by AnnaMaria Andriotis included some data provided by HSH.com:

Interest rates on home equity lines of credit, or Helocs, also increased to 5.52% as of July from an average of 5.13% in December, according to mortgage-data firm HSH.com.

September 1, 2016: “Las Vegas home prices have furthest climb to regain peak”, a Las Vegas Review-Journal look at local housing conditions by Eli Segall included a discussion with Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s VP:

In a phone interview, HSH Vice President Keith Gumbinger said Las Vegas has mounted an “impressive recovery” but “still has so far to go.”
“The depths are so deep, it’s hard to overcome it,” he said.

Cities that had the biggest booms also crashed the hardest, he said, and markets that have surpassed their previous highs didn’t experience such extreme ups and downs.
According to Gumbinger, about 45 of the 100 markets his company tracks are at or above previous peaks. “Everyone else is still trying to play catch-up,” he said.

Riverdale, New Jersey-based HSH — formally known as HSH Associates, Financial Publishers — said its report was based on the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s home price index.

August 26, 2016: “US housing: Long way from home”, a Financial Times wide-ranging market review by Stephen Foley featured some analysis from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

The fundamentals of the housing market mirror the slowly improving economy, says Keith Gumbinger, vice-president of HSH.com, a mortgage research company. “People who may have been unemployed will now have had their job for a while and can document a few years of income,” he says.
Mr Gumbinger says builders will ultimately respond to demand, and predicts the market will continue its steady thaw. “It is difficult to find something you love at a price you can afford in a place that you want to live, but that has always been difficult,” he says. “These are the housing compromises that people are having to relearn, or are learning for the first time.”

August 23, 2016: “Attention, Jumbo-Mortgage Shoppers: Deals Ahead”, a Wall Street Journal article by Robyn A. Friedman included some consumer advice from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

While borrowers should definitely shop around and compare terms and rates of several lenders, experts say there might be a benefit to dealing with a bank where you already have a relationship—or to which you would consider moving your business. “How much value you present to the institution will dictate how much leverage you have as a borrower,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a mortgage-information website.

Mr. Gumbinger says that a wealthy borrower walking into a lender off the street may have difficulty negotiating concessions on a loan unless something more is brought to the table. If a customer is prepared to give more business to the lender, however, it will be more likely to work with him or her.

Possible concessions include an interest-rate discount (more likely for adjustable-rate mortgages than fixed-rate ones) or a reduction in closing costs or escrows, Mr. Gumbinger says. Borrowers shouldn’t expect much on the interest rate, he adds, because lenders still need to make a return on their investment, and interest rates are already low.

August 22, 2016: “28 Ways to Save Your Way to $1 Million”, a Time/Money.com article by Ismat Sarah Mangla and Kerri Anne Renzulli featured some advice from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s VP:

Be a Part of History
Refinance to slash what might be your biggest monthly outlay. Historically low rates are still available for strong borrowers with good credit scores (740 and up), says Keith Gumbinger of HSH Associates. Today the average rate for a 30-year-fixed mortgage is 3.5%. If you’re going to stay in your home for three years or more, even a half-percentage point drop can pay off, says Gumbinger.

August 19, 2016: “What Is a Loan-to-Value Ratio? It’s the Key to Getting a Good Mortgage”, a Realtor.com piece by Daniel Bortz contained an explanation from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

“Borrowers who have a higher loan-to-value ratio are considered more risky to lenders, because they have less equity in their homes,” explains Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a mortgage information resource. In other words, they have less skin in the game.

August 11, 2016: “Mortgage Rates Confused on Which Way to Go”, an MReport article included some context on market conditions from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

“It’s not clear how the economy is performing, so mortgage rates don’t know which way to go at the moment,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com. “A weak report covering second quarter Gross Domestic Product growth two weeks ago gave way to a very solid July employment report. The drag of one report is being offset by the push of the other.”

August 11, 2016: “Putting tuition on the house tab”, a Greater Media Newspapers syndicated article by Marilyn Kennedy Melia featured some calculations and data provided by Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s VP:

Only homeowners with a certain level of equity, which is calculated by taking the current appraised value of a home and subtracting the principal amount of any mortgage on the property, qualify for equity borrowing, notes Keith Gumbinger of HSH.com.

The average rate for lines of credit was 5.54 percent in June, and the average for equity loans, which provide a lump sum with a fixed rate of repayment over a number of years, usually ten, was 6.08 percent.

August 11, 2016: “Home Equity Loans Come Back to Haunt Borrowers, Banks”, a Wall Street Journal article by AnnaMaria Andriotis included a cost analysis provided by HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

Resets can lead to payments jumping by hundreds, or in some cases, thousands of dollars a month. Consider a Heloc with a $100,000 balance and a 4.5% interest rate. It would have a $375 interest-only monthly payment, which would then rise to about $633 when principal payments kick in, assuming a 20-year repayment period, according to mortgage-data firm HSH.com.

August 3, 2016: “The Lowdown on Low Mortgage Rates”, a
Consumer Reports by Jonathan Berr
discussion had some market context provided by Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

Why are rates so low? Most recently, the unexpected British exit from the European Union played a role. The “Brexit” roiled financial markets and caused U.S. stocks to plummet as investors fretted about the potential impact of the referendum. When equity markets become volatile, investors look for safer alternatives, and none fits the bill like U.S. Treasuries, according to Keith Gumbinger, a vice president at HSH Associates, which tracks the mortgage market.

That’s important because 10-year Treasury rates correlate with the 30-year mortgage rate. “A 10-year window is a pretty reasonable proxy for how long people own homes or more importantly stay in mortgages,” before refinancing, says Gumbinger.

The size of your mortgage and the rate. A homeowner paying 4.75 percent on a $225,000 mortgage would see her monthly payment shrink more than 16 percent to $979.21, according to HSH’s calculator. Experts say it pays to shop around since rates can vary widely among financial institutions.

July 26, 2016: “Small mortgage, big challenge”, a Greater Media Newspapers syndicated column by Marilyn Kennedy Melia had some comments by HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger:

“In some cases,” says Keith Gumbinger of mortgage data site hsh.com, “a mortgage broker can help expand your financing sources beyond local offerings.” Brokerage firms extend loans with funds from a variety of firms.

July 27, 2016: “Close Watch on the Fed”, a NewdWallet.com market discussion by Hal M. Bundrick, CFP included context from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

“Financial markets have quieted greatly over the last few weeks, and U.S. economic data has been pretty favorable, so interest rates have firmed a little,” Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, said in a news release. “Despite the uptick, 30-year fixed-rate mortgages remain about a half percentage point below 2016 highs and are presenting a tremendous opportunity for homeowners and homebuyers.”

July 22, 2016: “Ellen James Martin’s Smart Moves: How to get the best refinance deal”, a syndicated column article by Ellen James Martin contained a lot of advice from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s VP:

Strong borrowers are now eligible for amazingly low rates,” said Keith Gumbinger, a vice president at HSH Associates, which tracks the mortgage market for consumers.

Indeed, some homeowners are even considering a cash-out refinance, an idea that was virtually unthinkable in the immediate aftermath of the 2008 crash.

Gumbinger cautions against drawing cash out of a home through a mortgage refinance (or a home equity line of credit) without serious plans for the money’s use.

Another factor limiting mortgage market access involves what Gumbinger calls a “a severe deterioration of credit.” This could result from late payments on your mortgage or a delinquent student loan.

The most common indicators of credit worthiness used by mortgage lenders involve credit scores. Lenders assume that the higher your score, the less risk you represent to those who lend you money.

Credit scores typically range between 300 and 850, and if you rank low it could severely hinder your chance of refinancing to a lower rate.

“At the very least, you’ll probably pay a higher interest rate and more fees to refinance if your credit score is subpar,” Gumbinger said.

Still, he said many homeowners with a few credit blemishes are actually surprised to find that their scores are higher than they’d expected.

“Within reason, I would leave no stone unturned in looking for the right place to refinance,” Gumbinger said.

Some homeowners are comfortable using a lender from a faraway state that they’ve found through the internet. But Gumbinger said those who are anxious about the process are often more at ease with a nearby lender.

“It’s important to realize that rates are quite uniform throughout the country. So you’re not necessarily going to get a better deal from a lender in a distant location. In addition, you’ll probably have a happier customer service situation locally,” he said.

July 13, 2016: “Why You Should Think About Refinancing Your Mortgage (Again)”, a Time/Money.com call to action by Kerry Close included an assessment of market conditions from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

The current climate could present an opportunity to take advantage of rates that might not resurface for a while, if ever. Following last week’s positive jobs report and the U.S. economy starting to rebound, “it might be hard for [rates] to set new record lows,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com

A good general rule is that it’s worth refinancing if you can shave a full percentage point from the interest rate you’re paying now, Gumbinger said. Anyone currently paying 4.375% or above should take notice.

July 12, 2016: “The chase heats up for the best refinancing rates”, a Reuters.com a market bulletin by Beth Pinsker contained some food for thought from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

While most experts say a full percentage point or a half point is the right guide, even a quarter point difference might be worth it for homeowners who are going to stay put for a while, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage resource HSH.com.

Gumbinger suggested that homeowners nearing retirement might even want an adjustable-rate mortgage, which are usually risky in an environment where rates are likely to rise.

He gives the example of a 58-year-old who plans to retire at 65 and move to Florida: A 7/1 adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) with a rate of 3 percent or lower could be a cost-savings, if the homeowner sells before the rate adjusts.

For homeowners chasing rates, how low is low enough?

“If you’re below 4 percent, you still have the best of the last 50 years. It will be hard to improve on that,” said Gumbinger.

Gumbinger said those who feel like they should be capturing every rate drop should be aware that there are costs associated with refinancing, even if marketed as “no-cost.”

July 12, 2016: “Nonbank lenders surging in California mortgage market”, a San Francisco Chronicle article by Kathleen Pender included an assessment of market realities from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s VP:

This year, for the first time, nonbanks will originate more mortgages than banks, he added.

Nonbanks typically borrow money from investors or banks to make loans, then quickly sell these loans to Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, banks and other buyers, so they can repay their loans and start the process over again. Banks also sell loans but hold onto some of them.

Many banks and nonbanks continue to service loans they sell for a fee. Servicers collect payments, forward them to the new loan owner and take action when borrowers fall behind.

“Mortgage lending has pretty thin profit margins,” said Keith Gumbinger, a vice president with mortgage information service HSH Associates. It could be that banks are finding easier growth opportunities elsewhere, he said.

July 8, 2016: “Average US 30-year mortgage rate falls to new 2016 lows”, an Associated Press and The Record market update by Paul Wiseman and Kathleen Lynn contained context provided by HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

Keith Gumbinger, vice president at Riverdale-based HSH.com, which tracks mortgage rates, said the rock-bottom rates are likely to create “incremental” increases in refinancing and home purchase activity.

Home-buying activity is being held back by several factors, he added. For one thing, home prices nationwide have been rising faster than incomes, making homes less affordable.

In addition, there’s a shortage of inventory of homes for sale.

And many would-be home buyers don’t have the credit scores or incomes to qualify for mortgages. “There are a lot of folks who might want to buy homes who don’t align with today’s underwriting standards,” Gumbinger said.

He said there’s no indication that the Federal Reserve will raise interest rates before December, because of global economic turbulence caused by the British vote to leave the European Union. In addition, he said, the Fed might be reluctant to act before the November presidential election.

July 7, 2016: “Tiny Rates for Jumbo Mortgages”, a Wall Street Journal article by AnnaMaria Andriotis included data only available from HSH.com:

Interest rates on 30-year, fixed-rate jumbo mortgages fell to an all-time low of 3.51% on Tuesday before settling at 3.60% on Wednesday, according to mortgage-data firm HSH.com. Even with the slight uptick, borrowers in high-priced markets should find that getting a large mortgage could be especially cheap now. On a weekly basis, these loans’ rates averaged 3.63% for the week ended July 1, also the lowest on record.

Jumbos, which exceed $417,000 in most parts of the country and $625,500 in higher-priced markets such as New York and San Francisco, are now about 0.08 of a percentage point more expensive than smaller-sized mortgages.

Adjustable-rate jumbos, or ARMs, are cheaper than conforming adjustable mortgages, as they have been for each week since mid-2013, according to HSH. The average rate for jumbos that have a fixed rate for the first five years before adjusting annually fell to 2.77% last week compared with 2.81% for smaller ARMs. That’s the lowest weekly rate since May 2013.

July 7, 2016: “People are refinancing their mortgages like crazy”, a Yahoo Finance a consumer advisory by Lisa Scherzer included comments from HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger:

Rates were already low before the Brexit vote, but since then they’ve “moved deeper into three-year low territory and are currently threatening a run to ‘all-time’ lows (in reality, something akin to 65-year lows),” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a mortgage data company.

The drop in rates is opening the refinance window wider – if only a smidge. Homeowners with a fixed-rate mortgage above about 4.5% should at least consider the option and run the numbers, Gumbinger says.

Homeowners who have rate higher than 4.5% on a 30-year mortgage (those 4.5% loans were common up to 2011, says Gumbinger) would benefit from refinancing if they have excellent credit.

July 6, 2016: “Where to Get a Mortgage: Bank, Broker, Online, or Elsewhere?”, a Realtor.com a discussion of mortgage outlet choices by Beth Braverman includes some advice from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

A mortgage broker has relationships with multiple lenders and works on your behalf to find you the right loan.

Pros: If you have a unique situation such as freelance income or poor credit, a broker will know all of the options that are open to you – and which lender might offer the best-fitting product.

Cons: Brokers receive fees, paid either by the borrower, the lender, or a combination of the two, that are generally 1% to 2% of the value of the loan. There is no guarantee that you’ll get a better rate than you would have gotten if you’d shopped around on your own, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage site HSH.com.

June 30, 2016: “Brexit Drives Down U.S. Mortgage Rates, With 30-Year at 3.48%”, a Bloomberg article on current market condtions by Prashant Gopal contained some forward-looking comments by Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com VP:

The good news for both buyers and homeowners looking to refinance is that the Federal Reserve isn’t likely to raise interest rates any time soon. Brexit has only heightened concerns about the global economy that have been pushing down borrowing costs since the start of the year.

“The odds for lower rates, for a longer period of time, are very good,” Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage-data company HSH.com, said before the Freddie Mac announcement. “If rates remain down at this level, you will see some additional incremental demand for housing.”

June 29, 2016: “How to Get the Best Mortgage Rate”, a Consumer Reports consumer advisory article by Tobie Stanger contained a comment on market conditions from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

Interest rates on the 30-year fixed mortgage now average around 3.56 percent compared to more than 4 percent one year ago, according to HSH Associates, a New Jersey-based publisher of residential lending rates. Fifteen-year fixed mortgages now average about 2.98 percent.

“Global turmoil is a mortgage shopper’s best friend,” says Keith Gumbinger, a vice president at HSH. “We will have lower fixed and adjustable mortgage rates until the volatility settles.”

June 29, 2016: “How Online Lenders Can Finance Home Improvements”, a Wall Street Journal article by Anya Martin included some home equity data provided by HSH.com:

In comparison, home-equity lines of credit from traditional lenders had an average rate of 5.54% in May, according to HSH.com, a mortgage-information website.

June 27, 2016: “Ten expenses you should be budgeting for”, a ConsumerAffairs.com with tips on planning by Sarah D. Young contained some data from an HSH.com article:

Home maintenance. “It’s always something” may as well be the homeowner’s anthem. Repairs and maintenance typically set homeowners back $1,000 each year, according to HSH.com. To err on the side of caution, repairs — especially big ones, such as water heater, furnace, and roof repairs — should be planned for in a budget.

June 27, 2016: “Why You Should Consider a 15-Year Mortgage”, a Consumer Reports debt management discussion by Carla Fried included a call to consumers to utilize HSH.com’s unique tools:

“The interest savings on a 15-year loan are an eye-opener,” says Rafal. “For people nearing retirement, using the shorter term to get rid of the debt before you stop working is smart.”

Rafal stresses that the 15-year loan only makes sense if you have the extra cash flow to comfortably afford the higher monthly payment. Mortgage data firm HSH.com has a free online refinancing calculator to help you run the numbers.

June 27, 2016: “Why ‘jumbo’ mortgages are now a better deal than smaller home loans”, a Boston.com a market-focused article by Scott Van Voorhis included some data derived from HSH.com editorial surveys:

Jumbo rates spiked during the Great Recession, rising to more than 1.5 percentage points higher than conventional, conforming loans before settling out one percentage point higher around 2011, according to HSH.com

June 24, 2016: “Here’s What to Expect Now That Britain Has Voted to Leave the E.U.”, an AARP.com advisory about changing market conditions by Eileen Ambrose included some context about market conditions provided by Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

Mortgages
Good news if you are shopping for a mortgage now. Interest rates on these loans have dipped slightly on the news of the vote, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president at mortgage research firm HSH.com.
“How far they can go down and stay down is really unclear at this point,” he said.

Investors fleeing stocks are seeking safety in U.S. Treasuries, and the rush of money flowing into these securities pushed their yields lower, Gumbinger explained. Mortgage rates closely track U.S. Treasury yields.

June 22, 2016: “How to Make Your Vacation Home Your Full-Time Home”, a Wall Street Journal review of financing conditions by Anya Martin included some data available only from HSH:

Jumbo mortgage rates have been at historic lows below 4% since Jan. 15. Average rates were 3.66% for a 30-year, fixed rate jumbo mortgage and 2.78% for a five-year, adjustable-rate jumbo mortgage on the week ending Friday, June 17, according to HSH.com, a website that tracks mortgage rates. Jumbo mortgages have loan amounts higher than government-backed limits of $417,000 in most areas and $625,500 in some high-priced places.

June 22, 2016: “Geopolitical Concerns Driving Low Rates, Refi App Growth
National Mortgage News”
, a National Mortgage News a review of market conditions by Glenn McCullom, included some comments and context from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

“Rates remained low as bond investors reacted to the Federal Reserve’s decision not to raise short-term interest rates in June. These investors are also concerned about Thursday’s vote in Great Britain over its continued membership in the European Union, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com.

“Mortgage rates will remain low, regardless of the outcome of the Brexit vote,” added Gumbinger in a press release. “The U.S. economic fundamentals haven’t changed, and a slow-growth, low-inflation pattern with no signs of action by the Fed should help keep them there well into the summer, if not beyond.”

June 17, 2016: “Mortgage Refis Return as Interest Rates Plummet”, a Wall Street Journal article by AnnaMaria Andriotis and Emily Glazer included some of HSH.com’s daily editorial survey data:

The average rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages fell to 3.59% on Wednesday, the lowest daily level since April 2013, according to mortgage-data firm HSH.com. The yield on the 10-year Treasury note closed at 1.563% Thursday, amid a flight to haven assets as financial markets grappled with fears the U.K. could vote next week to leave the European Union. It started the year at 2.3%. Bond yields fall as prices rise.

June 11, 2016: “One Nation: Young, eager unleash Rust Belt economy”, a Detroit Free Press analysis of economic conditions for milennials by Matthew Dolan referenced analysis developed by HSH.com:

Buying a home – a relative rarity for the millennial generation – is easier here with an estimated four out of five homes within reach of the middle class. Detroit is the fifth most affordable city in the U.S. for real estate, according to HSH.com, a mortgage-information firm. Residents only need to earn $35,538 a year for a median-priced home.

Other Rust Belt cities round out the top five: Pittsburgh ($29,481), Cleveland ($30,498), Cincinnati ($33,784); and St. Louis ($33,899). San Francisco was the least affordable at $144,196.

June 9, 2016: “Rates Holding Recent Lows As Fed Fears Fade”, a NerdWallet.com a market update by Hal M. Bundrick, CFP, included some commentary from HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger:

“After a soft first quarter, the kind of strong economic rebound we’ve seen in the second quarter in each of the past few years doesn’t appear to have formed, and this will probably give the Fed pause for at least another meeting,” Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, said in an analysis Tuesday. “The economy is only chugging along, which isn’t especially welcome, but good news is that low mortgage rates will continue to hang around to complete the spring homebuying season and beyond.”

June 8, 2016: “Thinking About Refinancing Your Home Loan?”, a Wall Street Journal consumer advisory piece by Anya Martin utilized some data and outlook provided by Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s VP:

On the week ending June 3, average interest rates were 3.79% for a 30-year, fixed-rate jumbo mortgage and 2.94% for a five-year, adjustable-rate jumbo mortgage, according to HSH.com, a website that tracks mortgage rates. That’s slightly below last year’s low of 3.82% on April 10, 2015. Overall, rates remain attractive despite a Federal Reserve quarter-point hike on short-term rates in December, widely expected to push up mortgage rates.

It is impossible to predict how long rates will stay this low, but borrowers are unlikely to save more by waiting, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH.com, a mortgage-information website. The Fed is expected to raise short-term rates at some point this year, which is likely to spur lenders to follow suit on mortgage rates, so anyone postponing a refinance should watch rates closely, he adds.

June 1, 2016: “Tap into Your Home Equity Line of Credit Cautiously”, a Consumer Reports a debt-management discussion by Carla Fried utilized data provided by HSH.com:

Keep an eye on the rate. Home equity lines of credit are variable rate loans. The average rate according to HSH.com, a publisher of mortgage and consumer loan data, is about 5.5 percent. That’s more than a half a percent lower than the typical fixed-rate home equity loan. Given that interest rates remain near their historic lows, it’s not surprising that borrowers prefer home equity lines of credit to fixed-rate home equity loans, according to CoreLogic.

WSJChartJune 1, 2016: “Banks’ Embrace of Jumbo Mortgages Means Fewer Loans for Blacks, Hispanics”, Wall Street Journal a deep analysis piece on mortgage lending by Rachel Louise Ensign, Paul Overberg, AnnaMaria Andriotis included information and a graphic derived from HSH.com survey information:

One indication of banks’ eagerness to woo jumbo borrowers is that average interest rates on 30-year fixed-rate jumbos in 2014 dropped below those on smaller mortgages for the first time in decades, according to mortgage-data firm HSH.com.

May 17, 2016: “FHA loans: shopping the options”, a Greater Media Newspapers, an article on mortgage options by Marilyn Kennedy Melia included observations and tips from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

New rules in 2015 cut the upfront fee required on FHA loans amount to .5 percent of the amount borrowed from 1.75 percent, promising to make the loan even more popular, observes Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage data site HSH.com.

Community banks: “We advise that borrowers look locally,” says Gumbinger. “Lots of community-based lenders do FHA.”

May 13, 2016: “Speed Real Estate”, a National Association of Realtors Real Estate Today Radio discussion featured an interview with HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger. Click the link to listen.

May 11, 2016:
“7 Hidden Costs of Selling a Home”, aRealtor.com consumer update by Daniel Bortz included some reckoning from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

Closing costs
Closing costs will likely be your second-biggest expense behind commission fees. You can expect to spend roughly 2% of your home’s sale price, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at mortgage information resource HSH.com.

The buyer typically chooses the closing company, and closing costs tend to be fixed, including transfer taxes, mortgage processing fees, escrow fees, and notary fees. You’ll also pay at closing any outstanding property taxes, a prorated share of the water and sewage bills (depending on when you sell), and the remainder of your mortgage.

Yet you may have control over a few closing costs, says Gumbinger. If you hire a real estate attorney to oversee your side of the transaction, it’s worth shopping around to compare rates. You might also be able to avoid a $100 to $200 reissue fee for the title search if you can provide a copy of your policy.

May 9, 2016: “Mortgage interest loses value”, a Chicago Tribune, a financial advisory article from noted finance writer Lew Sichelman, pointed consumers to some of HSH.com’s unique tools:

The numbers change as interest rates and borrowed amounts change, but you get the idea. If you expect a big tax break when you are buying your first house, you’d better do the arithmetic ahead of time. Otherwise, you could be in for a shock.

You can find calculators to help with the math all over the internet. I use the calculators at HSH Associates (www.hsh.com), a highly respected mortgage information service based in New Jersey.

May 3, 2016: “Family finances: Get cash fast to fix your car (and other emergencies)”, a Chicago Tribune home equity article by Miriam Cross from Kiplinger’s Personal Finance utilized some data provided by HSH.com:

Home equity
If you’re a homeowner with a home-equity line of credit (HELOC), borrowing from it is one of the best ways to bridge the gap. “You’re borrowing against equity you already have and paying yourself back,” says Michael Gibney, a certified financial planner (CFP) at Highland Financial Advisors in Riverdale, N.J. Setting up a line of credit is a good idea even if you haven’t earmarked any of the money. Interest rates recently averaged 5.1 percent, according to HSH.com, and interest on up to $100,000 in home-equity debt used for any purpose is usually tax-deductible.

May 2, 2016: “Can I get a mortgage during my coffee break?”, a Chicago Tribune a mortgage-technology piece by Lisa Gerstner from Kiplinger’s Personal Finance referenced data provided from HSH.com:

Credit qualifications, interest rates and fees for quick loans vary widely by the type of loan and lender. Quicken mortgages recently had fixed rates starting at 3.625 percent on 30-year conventional loans, compared with a national average of 3.75 percent, according to HSH.com. SoFi, an online lender that targets young people, charged a minimum of 3.5 percent for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with no origination fee or other lender fees.

April 22, 2016: “Now is a good time to explore whether refinancing makes sense”, a Chicago Tribune a consumer-advisory article by Patricia Mertz Esswein of Kiplinger’s Personal Finance included data and pointed consumers to tools at HSH.com:

The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage recently averaged 3.7 percent, according to HSH.com, which surveys mortgage lenders weekly. To pay off your mortgage more quickly, consider refinancing to a 15-year loan, which was recently 3.1 percent. Your monthly payment will be higher, but with the shorter term, you’ll save thousands in interest. Another option: Ask lenders for a term equal to the remaining years of your existing mortgage.

Or you could pay a higher interest rate in exchange for a lender credit that offsets closing costs. (You can determine your payment, savings and break-even point with the refinance calculators at hsh.com.) (This story also appeared in the Tulsa World on May 10).

April 17, 2016: “Veteran home loans could be overlooked, misunderstood”, a Victoria (TX) Advocate a market-segment review by Taylor Tompkins included comments from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

Many times, though, veterans don’t know about the VA loan, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH.com, a consumer loan website that has a landing page specifically for veterans.

“If you’re someone who is interested in buying a home, maybe you’re not active military anymore, you’re not necessarily even living in a place with a high military concentration, you don’t have a lot of contacts anymore that are military-oriented, you walk into a local bank and say, ‘I’m thinking about buying a home,'” Gumbinger said. “They say, ‘Oh, well, you know, we’ve got this program, that program and the other program,’ and VA may never come up. They may not even think about it.”

April 7, 2016: “U.S. Mortgage Rates Fall With 30-Year at Lowest in 14 Months”, a Bloomberg.com a market update by Prashant Gopal included commentary provided by HSH.com vp Keith Gumbinger:

Mortgage rates tracked a sharp drop in yields last week for the benchmark 10-year Treasuries, which have fallen on concerns of a slowing global economy. As the key U.S. spring buying season gets going, low borrowing costs will help fuel demand for the short supply of homes on the market, according Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage-data company HSH.com.

“To the extent they incentivize more wannabe homebuyers into the marketplace, that only puts more upward pressure on prices,” he said in an interview Wednesday.

April 5, 2016: “4 Times It Makes Sense to Pay More (Yes, More) for Your Mortgage”, a Realtor.com consumer-focused mortgage article by Beth Braverman included some expertise from HSH.com vp Keith Gumbinger:

While your knee-jerk reaction might be to avoid PMI no matter what, it does make sense sometimes to take on this added monthly expense. One obvious example is if you just can’t afford a 20% down payment. Or perhaps you can, but you’d have to tap investments that would trigger costly taxes or fees if withdrawn.

“It can be a tactical decision to take a loan with mortgage insurance,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage research site HSH. Use this calculator to get a sense of how the size of your down payment will affect the cost of your loan.

April 2, 2016: “Your purchase offer and financing contingencies“, a NAR Real Estate Today Radio discussion featured an interview with HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger. Click the link to listen.

April 1, 2016: “Best Places to Get Money in an Emergency When You Don’t Have an Emergency Fund”, Kiplinger’s Personal Finance article by Miriam Cross, included home equity data provided by HSH.com:

Setting up a line of credit is a good idea even if you haven’t earmarked any of the money. You can borrow up to your limit, often for a 10-year period, before you have to repay principal. Interest rates recently averaged 5.1%, according to HSH.com, and interest on up to $100,000 in home-equity debt used for any purpose is usually tax-deductible.

March 31, 2016: “Why It’s So Tough to Get a Mortgage – and How to Up Your Chances”, a Realtor.com advisory piece by Clare Trapasso included current and historical mortgage data provided by HSH.com:

For example, rates were 3.8% for the average 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage last week, according to HSH.com, a publisher of mortgage information and statistics. In 2000, it was 8.08%. At the height of the bubble in 2007, it was 6.37%; in 2010, it was 5.08%.

March 30, 2016: “For Mortgage Borrowers, a Property-Tax Trap”, a Wall Street Journal advisory by Anya Martin included an assessment of local market conditions using an exclusive HSH.com tool:

In competitive housing markets, sale prices are rising so rapidly that tax assessments may eventually rise as well. For example, in the Denver metro area, home values are 45.29% above peak prerecession prices, according to the latest Home Price Recovery Index by mortgage-rate tracking website HSH.com.

March 29, 2016: “10 Things You Should Be Budgeting for But Probably Aren’t”, a Quicken Loans Zing blog personal finance review by Patrick Chism included some estimates from HSH.com:

Home Maintenance
There are some great benefits to owning a home, but there are also some expenses to be considered. According to HSH.com, you can expect to pay 1% of your home’s total value in maintenance and repairs each year. For instance, if you had a $100,000 house, you will probably pay $1,000 annually in repairs.

March 21, 2016: “Hot Austin housing market leads nation in recovery from the recession”, an Austin Culturemap discussion of real estate conditions by Molly Mcmanus included data from HSH’s Home Price Recovery Index:

They say Austin is recession-proof, and a new real estate report backs up that sentiment. Online mortgage and loan resource center HSH.com reveals which metros have bounced back the most from the Great Recession – Austin leads the way.

Using data from the federal home price index from 1991 through the fourth quarter of 2015, HSH.com created a “home price recovery index.” The data shows each market’s pre-housing-crisis peak value, bottom value, and current housing value.

To understand what these numbers mean for home prices, HSH.com offers a “home value estimator,” which allows homeowners to see how the price change in Austin has affected the value of their home. And, as you may have already guessed, if you own property in Austin, you can expect to see big numbers that indicate a great return on your investment.

March 8, 2016: “This Spring, Expect Higher Home Prices”, a Wall Street Journal market outlook by Anya Martin included data and comments from HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger:

Borrowers got a sweet surprise when mortgage rates fell earlier this year—despite the Federal Reserve’s short-term rates increase in December. The average interest rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate jumbo mortgage was 3.75% for the week ending March 4, according to mortgage rate website HSH.com.

Rates aren’t expected to rise above 4% before May, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com. With a softened economy, the Fed isn’t predicted to raise short-term rates at its March meeting, with the next opportunity being June, he adds.

March 6, 2016: “The salary you need to afford a home in these 25 cities”, a Marketwatch.com update on regional housing costs by Catey Hill discussed certain local market conditions revealed in HSH.com data:

If the New York figure sounds low, there’s a good reason: This study examined the median prices in metro areas (as defined by the National Association of Realtors 2015 fourth-quarter data), which means that the stratospheric prices of Manhattan and portions of Brooklyn are pulled down to Earth by prices in other boroughs and in the suburbs, notes Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com.

March 3, 2016: “Tampa Bay is one of the most affordable housing markets, but mortgage rates top nation”, a Tampa Bay Times market update by Susan Taylor Martin used information from HSH.com’s quarterly metro affordability report:

But the study, conducted by the mortgage research company HSH.com, found that Tampa Bay’s average rate for a 30-year, fixed-rate loan stood at 4.16 percent in the final quarter of the year compared with 4.02 percent nationally. Boston, San Francisco and several other cities had rates below 4 percent.

Tampa Bay’s slightly higher interest rate could reflect the fact that it was slammed during the housing crash and still has above-average foreclosure levels.

“In some cases when you find a difference in regional markets there are certain risks,” Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, said Thursday. “If a market still has a little more of a high-risk profile, lenders will price a little higher and are wary about losses.”

However, he added, “It’s not as though you’re at 5 (percent) and everybody else is at 4. It’s not really out of line.”

February 29, 2016: “Get an Interest Rate Checkup”, an AARP.com consumer article written by Eileen Ambrose included some expertise contributed by HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

Mortgages
Rates on mortgages don’t move in lockstep with Fed policy and, in fact, dipped following last year’s rate hike, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at mortgage research firm HSH.com. Consumers who are good credit risks were able last month to secure a rate of 3.75 percent – or better – on a 30-year-fixed loan, Gumbinger says.

Action: If you’re paying 1 percentage point more on your mortgage than what banks are offering, run the numbers to see if refinancing is worthwhile, he says. Consider locking in a rate with a lender soon if you’re close to buying a house, because the long-term forecast is for higher rates. “Rates rise much faster than they fall,” he says.

Home equity lines of credit
The rate on this revolving line of credit is typically a combination of the prime rate – what banks charge their best customers – plus an interest margin that can run from zero to 3 percent depending on the lender, Gumbinger says.

February 28, 2016: “The Curious Case of Low Interest Rate Regime”, a MicroCap Magazine market review included some quotes from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

HSH vice president Keith Gumbinger believes that a spike in rates is not too likely, and consumers need not panic despite this first weekly increase for calendar 2016.

“While there’s little likelihood of a spike in rates, it’s reasonable to think that there’s potentially more upside than downside for them, especially if the economy continues to chug along,” said Gumbinger in a blog post. “That said, even if they should edge higher, mortgage rates are in a good position to support a positive spring home buying season, provided there are desirable homes to buy at affordable prices.”

February 21, 2016: “Down payments for homebuyers fall within reach”, a NorthJersey.com market conditions update from Kathleen Lynn included some context provided by Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

“A small movement in the interest rate, you can generally overcome because its effect on the monthly payment is slight,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH.com, a Riverdale company that tracks the mortgage market. “But accumulating sufficient funds for the down payment is definitely considered to be the biggest stumbling block, especially for first-time buyers.”

For many buyers, the only path into homeownership is with a low-down-payment mortgage. Low-down-payment loans have long been backed by the Federal Housing Administration, which offers mortgages with down payments as low as 3.5 percent. “FHA loans are still very important for first-time buyers,” Gumbinger said.

February 12, 2016: “Yes, Refinance Your Mortgage Now, a Money consumer-focused article by Kerry Close contained some advice from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

With rates approaching historic lows, now is probably the time to refinance if you haven’t done so in the past several years, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com.

“I don’t think rates are going to go significantly lower than this,” Gumbinger said. “I’d never say never, but the downside is much more limited.”

Don’t forget about refinancing costs such as bank fees, attorney fees, appraisal fees, and title insurance fees. Assume the closing costs of refinancing will amount to about 2% of the value of the loan, Gumbinger says.

February 10, 2016: “Smart Moves: Refinance for cash or better rates”, a syndicated column by Ellen James Martin included some direction provided by HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

Would refinancing be a wise move for you? That depends, said Keith Gumbinger, a vice president at HSH Associates, which tracks mortgage rates throughout the country.

“Before you do a refi, you’ve got to do the math. How much equity do you have in the house? What would it cost to do the new loan? And how long would your new term stretch out?” Gumbinger said.

Gumbinger said it’s up to consumers to carefully compare a lender’s charges before deciding whether to proceed. To do this, it’s important to study a copy of the lender’s estimate of closing costs. This standard form, which was recently updated by federal regulators, should list all the fees you’d pay at closing, with a very small margin for changes. The lender must give you this estimate shortly after you apply for a mortgage.

February 8, 2016: “Why Home Buying Is (or Isn’t) Like Dating”,
a Realtor.com conversation piece by Yuqing Pan included data derived from a survey HSH.com conducted:

Just like the sexy-hot European sports car you bought which turns out to get 4.5 miles per gallon and not even have room for a suitcase in its trunk, the house that you spend months buying may turn out to be a bummer. About 80% of home buyers have at least one major regret about their new home, says an HSH.com survey. Some top complaints include being too small, not having enough storage space, neighbors, and school system.

February 4, 2016: “U.S. Mortgage Rates Fall With 30-Year at the Lowest Since April”, a Bloomberg News market update by Prashant Gopal included some context provided by HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

“We’re starting to get closer to the spring homebuying season, and we’re starting from a place of lower interest rates than we would have expected,” Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a Riverdale, New Jersey-based mortgage-data company, said in a telephone interview Wednesday.

Mortgage costs were expected to climb after the Federal Reserve raised its benchmark lending rate in December.

February 3, 2016: “The New, More Responsible Home-Equity Line of Credit”, a Wall Street Journal market update by Anya Martin featured home equity data provided by HSH.com:

With a home-equity line of credit, or Heloc, lenders make available a certain amount over a set period, with the home as collateral. Then, homeowners can dip in to borrow and pay off the balance multiple times over the time period. Helocs typically have an adjustable rate, which averaged 5.30% on Jan. 16, according to HSH.com, a mortgage-information website.

February 2, 2016: “Banks Get Concession on Mortgage Fights With Fannie, Freddie”, a Bloomberg article covering a technical change to the mortgage market contained an explanation provided by HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger:

The arbitration system “means a lender isn’t necessarily going to have loans that are stuck in limbo some place,” Keith Gumbinger, vice president of loan-research site HSH.com, said in a telephone interview. “It clarifies the responsibilities and provides an outlet for loans to be resolved.”

January 30, 2016: “Where are mortgage rates heading? Not necessarily up, a Detroit Free Press feature by Susan Tompor included some analysis by Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

Keith Gumbinger, vice president for HSH.com, a mortgage information website, said it is looking more and more as if the Fed won’t be raising rates four times in 2016.

“If the economy is slowing — or certainly not accelerating — it does suggest that the Fed probably won’t be raising rates four times this year,” Gumbinger said. “We might not even see the first interest rate increase until perhaps June.”

Gumbinger said right now he expects that the 30-year fixed rate mortgage could peak around 4.625% by year end.

Many experts, he said, are surprised that rates remained as low as they have for this year, as some had expected mortgage rates to be closer to 4.5% by now.

January 27, 2016: “What’s Ahead for Jumbo-Loan Borrowers in 2016”>, a forward-looking Wall Street Journal Jumbo Jungle feature by Anya Martin included an outlook from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com’s vice president:

The market dip is likely to keep interest rates below 4% for a while longer, which also could make borrowing large sums more attractive, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of mortgage-rate website HSH.com. The Federal Reserve also is less likely to raise short-term rates this spring, he adds.

Mr. Gumbinger expects the Fed to raise short-term rates no more than two to three times in 2016, with the average 30-year, fixed-rate jumbo not topping 4 5/8%. Five-year, adjustable-rate mortgages could go up to 4%, he adds.

January 22, 2016: “‘We Can’t Make Money’: Why BankUnited Ditched Retail Mortgages, a National Mortgage News piece by Brad Finkelstein included some context provided by HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger:

It was reasonable for BankUnited to throw in the towel on retail mortgages, given a slowdown tied to rising interest rates, increased regulation and a footprint limited to the highly competitive markets of Florida and New York, said Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH.com.

“There are probably more productive opportunities to pursue than those presented by the local residential mortgage climate in the narrow geographic area in which they operate,” Gumbinger said.

January 2, 2016: “The Fed has raised interest rates: What do millennials need to know?” a syndicated Chicago Tribune article by Carolyn Bigda included comments from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

Home loans: As with student loans, if you have a fixed-rate mortgage you don’t have to worry about higher monthly payments.

A borrower with an adjustable rate mortgage will see payments increase almost immediately if he is out of the temporary fixed-rate period (usually the first five or seven years of the loan).

If you plan to stay in your house for several more years, now may be the time to refinance into a fixed-rate loan. If not, do the math to see if it makes sense to hold on to your ARM.

The average rate on a 5/1 ARM (meaning a variable rate loan with a five-year fixed-rate period) is 3.19 percent today, according to HSH.com, which tracks mortgage trends. A 30-year fixed-rate loan charges 4.02 percent.

“You might do better with an ARM whose fixed-rate period matches your timeframe,” said Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH.

Back to HSH.com in the News — 2015