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Mortgage rates are moving again! Where are they headed? See our newest Two-Month Forecast for Mortgage Rates.

Mortgage rates are moving again! Where are they headed? See our newest Two-Month Forecast for Mortgage Rates.

HSH in the news - 2019

July 27, 2019: "First-time Sellers", a Real Estate Today Radio segment featured HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger discussing mortgage issues that home sellers need to concern themselves with.

July 13, 2019: "Secrets of the Pros", a Real Estate Today Radio segment featured HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger discussing mortgage tips and tricks.

July 11, 2019: "This Chart Shows the Credit Score You REALLY Need to Get a Mortgage", a Money.com review of market conditions by Ian Salisbury included some commentary from HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger:

Keith Gumbinger, vice president at mortgage site HSH.com, says the sweet spot for most would-be homeowners is 700 to 720. Borrowers with credit scores below that level could face problems, like high interest rates and lower caps on the amount lenders will allow them to borrow. "You can get a mortgage with a low credit score," he says. "But it may not be beneficial to your [home buying] transaction."

July 10, 2019: "5 Questions to Ask Before Selling Your Home", a Realtor.com homeowner advisory by Daniel Bortz included a rule-of-thumb from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com's vice president:

1. Can I afford to sell my house?
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.

July 2, 2019: "The best way to tap your home for cash right now", a Considerable.com review of home equity borrowing conditions by Carla Fried included a quote from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

Banks are highly motivated these days to suggest HELOCs over home equity loans. Changes in federal regulations since the 2008 financial crisis has made it more expensive for banks to offer home equity loans, but not the cost of offering HELOCs.
"For technical, not sinister reasons, many banks have made the choice to just offer HELOCs," says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of consumer mortgage site HSH.com.

July 1, 2019: "More Ways to Save With All-Star Experts' Tips", a AARP.com savings and debt feature by Tracey E. Hopkins, Claire R. McIntosh and David Schiff that characterized HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger as an "online mortgage wizard" and included these useful tips he provided:

62. Retire Mortgage Free
With 15 years left on a 5 percent 30-year mortgage of $100,000, you can retire the loan in seven years by prepaying $442.63 a month. Do that and you'll save $16,035 in interest.
63. Use Adjustables
Adjustable-rate mortgages aren't always a good idea. But refinance with a hybrid ARM and save if you plan to sell in a given time frame. A five-year fixed-rate loan may be available for 3 percent.

June 18, 2019: "Your money: Buying or refinancing? The mortgage rate frenzy is back", a Reuters.com syndicated look at mortgage refinancing conditions by Beth Pinsker included a quote from Keith Gumbinger, HSH's Vice President regarding lower-than-expected interest rates this year triggering homeowners to refinance:

"It’s amazing how many times a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity comes around," said Keith Gumbinger, vice president of hsh.com, a mortgage information website. This is the opposite of the steadily upward movement of rates that experts forecast for 2019.

May 22, 2019: "3 retirement catch-up strategies", a FoxBusiness.com financial planning piece by Vera Gibbons included some advice from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

Rather stay in your home as you enter retirement? Consider a reverse mortgage. These government-backed loans allow older homeowners (62 years or older) to convert some of their home equity into cash.
The bank makes payments to you and you can use the tax-free funds however you would like. Unlike other kinds of loans, you don't have to pay back the debt immediately. Rather, the balance must be repaid when the last surviving borrower dies, sells the home or moves out.
Sound complex? It is.
"The reverse mortgage is certainly not without risks, either," says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at hsh.com. But unlike years past, it is no longer the loan of last resort for cash-strapped homeowners in retirement.
"It’s now being used as part of an overall financial strategy now that the product has become more respectable," he says.

May 13, 2019: "4 Good Reasons to Not Get a Mortgage Online, a Realtor.com feature regarding how consumers should approach the mortgage market place by Lisa Prevost included advice from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com's vice president:

1. You want to shop around for the best loan
First and foremost, it's always in a borrower's best interest to comparison shop on rates and fees, says Keith Gumbinger, a vice president at HSH.com, a mortgage information website. Speed and convenience alone do not always translate into a better price for borrowers.
"You should invest some time in it, do your research," Gumbinger says. "Also, do your diligence on your credit. And think about how long you're going to be in your home." The reason? The length of time you estimate you are likely to be staying in the home can be a factor in whether you apply for a fixed or adjustable rate loan.
The research process may ultimately lead you straight to the speedy online mortgage site as the best option anyway. But, Gumbinger says, "You won't know that unless you go out and take a look around."

April 10, 2019: "Retirement realities: What's in, and what's out, a FoxBusiness.com retirement planning story by Vera Gibbons included a clear-eyed assessment of reality for many from HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger:

Out: Being mortgage free
In: Having manageable debts
Afraid you will still owe money on a mortgage when you retire? Join the club.
"Being mortgage free in retirement is pretty much out the window as a reality," says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of hsh.com, a mortgage information website. "It’s just not attainable for many, so more retirees are ‘recasting debt’ to make it more manageable."
How so?
"They’re using equity in their homes to pay off debt, they’re taking out reverse mortgages, or they’re refinancing," says Gumbinger.
And it’s an excellent time to do this, he says. With the average rate on a 30-year fixed loan now hovering around 4 percent, nearly 5 million borrowers could likely qualify for a refinance, reducing their interest rate by at least three-quarters of a percentage point.

April 3, 2019: First-time home buyers get a break with lower mortgage rates", a Detroit Free Press a look at help for first time homebuyers by Susan Tompor included some useful tips to find help from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com's vice president:

Research first-time buyer programs
"Virtually all banks (and some non-banks) have some form of first-time home buyer programs," said Keith Gumbinger, vice president for HSH.com.
You might be able to get some sort of subsidy on a down payment, perhaps a reduction on closing costs. Or maybe some lenders offer a mortgage to first-home buyers through a relaxed credit score or some more wiggle room relating to how much debt you're carrying relative to your income.
Gumbinger said an FHA loan is a favorite of first-time home buyers, as the the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development does not use risk-based pricing. In some cases, first-time buyers can find programs that offer a mortgage with down payments for 3% or 3.5% of the purchase price.
"Some of these changes reflect the reality that first-time home buyers find it challenging to find an attractively priced home. A smaller down payment can mean a larger mortgage and higher monthly payments. Many of these programs look to soften that impact," Gumbinger said.
Consumers need to understand that many different home buyer programs exist and will vary by bank and nonbank, as well as by state, Gumbinger noted. The HSH.com site lists a variety of state-backed home buyer programs.

March 27, 2019: "How to Find the Cheapest Mortgage" , a Consumer Reports mortgage-shopping guide by Tobie Stanger included valuable tips for searching the markets from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com's vice president:

Search online with the name of your home state and terms like "community bank mortgage," "s&l mortgage," and "credit union mortgage." We found lots of options this way.
Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a mortgage information website based in Riverdale, N.J., says these smaller lenders typically have better rates for ARMs and offer better terms and rates to people with variable income streams, like the self-employed.

March 25, 2019: " How to Benefit From Rising Home Prices, a Consumer Reports article on strategically using home equity by Tobie Stanger included some words of caution from HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger:

And a HELOC can be far less costly than using a credit card to pay for a home improvement project. Credit card interest rates are typically in the double digits.
But be careful about how much you borrow. Many homeowners who refinanced or took out large home equity lines leading up to the Great Recession ended up owing more than their homes were worth when prices plummeted, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH.com, a mortgage data provider. While most economists don't see the same debacle on the horizon, history serves as a warning.
"It can take many years to build equity in your home but only a few purchases or a small decline in value to wipe it all out," Gumbinger says.
Also, be wary of borrowing with a reverse mortgage, an option for homeowners ages 62 or older. If after borrowing you can't afford the insurance, taxes, maintenance, or monthly debt payments, you could lose your home.

March 14, 2019: "How Much Do You Need to Make?", a New York Times review of housing market conditions by Michael Kolomatsky incorporated figures from HSH.com's quarterly affordability study:

Buying a home got more challenging in the past year, with rising interest rates and tight inventory the main culprits. If you’re wondering where you can afford to live, HSH.com’s newest report may help.
The report shows how much you need to make to qualify for a mortgage for a median-priced home in the 50 largest American cities. The calculations take into account home prices in each of those cities in the fourth quarter of 2018, as well as 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rates, property taxes and homeowner’s insurance.

March 11, 2019: " How Much You Need To Earn To Buy A Home In America Today", a Benzinga.com update on housing affordability conditions by Wayne Duggan included components of HSH.com's quarterly metropolitan area affordability analysis:

While that surge in home prices is great for homeowners, it’s made it difficult for homebuyers, particularly younger buyers in large cities where the real estate market is hottest.
To make matters worse, rising interest rates have pushed mortgage rates higher than they’ve been in years, creating yet another obstacle for buyers. HSH.com recently compiled a list of the most- and least-affordable U.S. metro housing markets. The list incorporates median housing prices, interest, taxes and insurance payments and is ranked by the salary a homebuyer would need to afford the average home in each market.
On a national level, the salary needed to comfortably afford a home is $61,453, according to HSH.com. That estimate is based on an average mortgage rate of 4.9 percent on a median home price of $257,600. That average home price is up 3.95 percent from a year ago. The average monthly mortgage payment is around $1,433.

March 11, 2019: "'I Got a Home Loan in 24 Hours': How to Get a Mortgage Fast, Revealed", a Realtor.com market technology discussion by Daniel Bortz included some advice for consumers from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

And a growing number of mortgage lenders are stepping up the pace, offering rapid pre-approval to home buyers—some within 24 hours of a borrower submitting an application, says Keith Gumbinger, vice president at HSH.com, a mortgage information website.
“Online-only lenders like Rocket showed this could be done, and now we’re seeing many mortgage lenders taking steps to keep up,” he says.
Example: In simple cases, Bank of America's electronic system can give an applicant pre-approval within 72 hours or less, says John Schleck, senior vice president of sales at the lender.
Nonetheless, “Just because you can get a mortgage more quickly doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best mortgage for you,” Gumbinger points out. “Speed and convenience can be valuable, but you still have to research the mortgage market and shop around.”

March 5, 2019: "10 Cities Where You Can Own A Home For About $1,000 A Month", a Forbes article about relatively affordable places to live by Brenda Richardson included analysis done by Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com's vice president:

While housing affordability continues to be a concern across the country, there are some metropolitan areas where homes are a relative bargain. Pittsburgh, for example, is the nation's most affordable metro area to buy a home, according to a recent analysis by mortgage data provider HSH.com.
Using the latest quarterly home-price information from the National Association of Realtors, HSH.com crunched the numbers to find the 10 metro areas where a home costs about $1,000 a month. It incorporated local property tax and homeowner's insurance costs to calculate the income needed to qualify for a median-priced home. The median price is the figure in the middle of a data set in which half of the houses are priced for less and half are priced for more.

March 1, 2019: " How Much Mortgage Can You Afford In The 25 Priciest U.S. Markets?", a Investors Business Daily consumer advisory about housing costs by Paul Katzeff used data provided by HSH.com:

Here's what you're up against. In the fourth quarter, monthly base payments for single-family existing homes ranged from $1,430 to $5,946. That was based on median purchase prices in the 25 most expensive U.S. metropolitan markets, according to HSH.com.
Monthly base payments consist of the principal, interest, taxes and insurance (PITI) that comprise typical mortgage payments.
In contrast, the monthly PITI in the 50 most populous U.S. metro areas averaged just $1,434.
That makes home buying a sport reserved for the affluent in those 25 most expensive metro areas. And that's despite the fact that those metro areas include more than just pricey downtown neighborhoods.

February 21, 2019: "This new home-equity tool is like CreditKarma for home value", a Inman News review of a new HSH.com tool by Craig C. Rowe:

If the housing bubble of the mid-2000s wasn’t enough to make home equity an everyday concern for homeowners, surely the Zestimate drove home the idea that a house should be looked at with the same level of daily interest as a checking account.
Today, the imperfect science of home value is an undercurrent in every conversation about real estate, driving sellers to reconsider when they sell and giving buyers a basis for their offers.
HSH.com, a mortgage data and industry content resource, has launched KnowEquity Tracker and Projector, a tool for homeowners to stay abreast of their property’s equity level.
It also provides a home-equity forecast, and not unlike a credit reporting tool, it encourages owners to set and pursue home-equity goals.

February 28, 2019: "7 Cities Where You'll Need A 6-Figure Salary To Afford A Median-Priced Home", a Forbes look at home affordability by Brenda Richardson referred to analysis done by Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com's vice president:

Rising home prices and high mortgage rates have challenged potential home buyers across the country, and for would-be buyers in seven cities, the bar has been set higher. A recent analysis by mortgage data provider HSH.com finds homeownership continues to be out of reach for all but the highest earners in these metropolitan areas.
To arrive at its figures, HSH.com used the latest quarterly home-price information from the National Association of Realtors. It incorporated local property tax and homeowner's insurance costs to calculate the income needed to qualify for a median-priced home.

February 26, 2019: Looking for a home in Silicon Valley? Better make $255,000", a Mercury-Times review of local housing conditions by Marisa Kendall contained a quote from Keith Gumbinger, HSH.com's vice president:

“Potential homebuyers continue to face challenging conditions,” HSH.com vice president Keith Gumbinger wrote in a news release, “given expensive and competitive housing markets.”

January 31, 2019: "Here’s What the Fed’s Halt on Interest Rates Means for Your Wallet", a New York Times update on consumer lending conditions by Tara Siegel Bernard included some analysis from HSH.com VP Keith Gumbinger:

The combination of the recent increases and changes in the tax code that restricted the interest deduction “is a bit of a double pinch for some,” said Keith Gumbinger of HSH.com, which tracks the mortgage market.
The good news related to adjustable-rate mortgages, which typically have a fixed rate for a number of years and then adjust annually, is that few people have them, Mr. Gumbinger said. But even though the Fed is done raising rates, borrowers who are already out of their fixed-rate period can expect to pay more when rates reset, if they haven’t already.

Back to HSH.com in the News — 2018