LenderNews by Rob Chrisman
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Nov. 18: AE, retail, & MI jobs; LO recruitment survey; Appraisal Institute goes to Washington DC

November 18, 2016

Just how much did rates go up recently? Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey showed a 37 basis point (.375) jump in the average 30-year rate, week-over-week, to 3.95%. Convincing anyone with rate less than that to refinance is going to be tough…roll out the home equity lines of credit!
 
In job news Genworth Mortgage Insurance is currently seeking applicants for a Regional Vice President to lead the South Central sales team. Key responsibilities include executing growth strategies across all Mortgage Insurance segments to achieve New Insurance Written, Operating Expense targets, and ongoing business initiatives. Building a positive results-based culture within the region by employing leadership skills. Motivating and driving individual and team accountability, while providing coaching on effective selling techniques and value proposition knowledge. The successful candidate will have several years’ experience leading professional teams in accomplishing stretch goals, mortgage banking and/or mortgage insurance sales experience, and leadership experience of multi-level teams including management of other people leaders. Think flexible hours with extensive overnight travel. This position can be based in Dallas or other remote areas in the region. Interested candidates should send their resume to Andre Ford or click here to see the full job description and apply online.
 
Floify, mortgage automation software provider, announces the results of an industry-wide study on loan officer recruitment and retention. The study solicited over 13,000 mortgage originators, specifically loan officers, branch managers, and area sales managers. The analysis focused on loan originators with an annual loan volume of $21 million or more to distinguish the needs and priorities of "high-achieving" loan officers. Mortgage industry professionals can download the full study for details. "One of the main priorities for lenders right now is addressing the challenge of recruiting and retaining top talent", said Dave Sims, CEO of Floify. Equally important to high-achieving loan officers is partnering with lenders who offer the technology, culture and infrastructure to help them scale loan volumes. This study reveals how technology, compensation, executive management culture, and coaching drive an LO’s decision to stay or leave their lender. Download the full study! For more information on Floify’s mortgage automation platform email us at info@floify.com.
 
In wholesale job news, Angel Oak Mortgage Solutions is pioneering a fresh approach to today’s mortgage lending challenges, offering a breadth of alternative lending products to retail broker partners. Through their strategic affiliation with Angel Oak Companies and its expertise in mortgage lending, asset management and capital markets, their collective teams function as a fully integrated enterprise from loan submission to loan securitization. To fulfill their aggressive growth plans, they are hiring experienced Wholesale Account Executives who thrive when challenged and can deliver a level of service unparalleled in the industry. If you’d like to be a part of their highly entrepreneurial organization that embraces a strong, service-based culture with uncapped earning potential, look no further. Come join the nation’s top Non-QM lender by emailing careers@angeloakms.com immediately for consideration.
 
And on the retail side, “Assurance Financial has a solid reputation for closing loans on time. It’s what we do. Our back office supports its mortgage loan originators and branch managers so they can focus on originating more new loans rather than worrying about closing their pipeline. Assurance is expanding its footprint, selectively hiring Branch Managers and MLOs in good markets. For more information, contact Paul Peters, CMB (225-239-7948) or visit www.LendTheWay.com/Careers.”
 
Is the only thing better than a closed loan a free party? This industry works hard and plays hard. National Mortgage Professional Magazine knows that! That’s why this year’s Holiday Networking Parties in December in Irvine, CA, Fort Lauderdale, FL and in Long Island, NY they’re giving originators a powerful program of business building workshops before it’s party time….and it’s all FREE. These events include strategies on building your purchase business from Ron Vaimberg, a powerful presentation from Frank and Brian of National Real Estate Post, a Certified Military Home Specialist Workshop by Boots Across America, learn how to “Knock Out Your Competition” with Barry Habib, and a Renovation Lending Workshop with Damon Richardson. Workshops will be followed by a networking party where attendees will mix and mingle with other successful mortgage loan officers and celebrate the evening with music, complimentary food, prizes and a heavy dose of holiday cheer! Learn more about these Holiday Parties here.
 
Rain on the scarecrow, blood on the plow? The Fed reports the number of banks seeking additional collateral on farm loans is now the highest level in 25 years. A drop in farm land values and a global crop surplus has led to a decline in loan payments so banks are acting. In addition, yesterday I had CFPB updates. After the commentary went out the CFPB published a list of counties determined to be “rural” and a list of counties determined to be “rural or underserved” during 2016 for purposes of applying certain regulatory provisions related to mortgage loans during 2017 (2017 lists). Rural counties are generally defined by using the USDA Economic Research Service’s urban influence codes, and underserved counties are defined by reference to data collected under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act.
 
Appraising ag land can be a real challenge. Heck, appraising a house in Phoenix or Ramsey, MN can be a real challenge as well. This week The Appraisal Institute, the largest professional association of real estate appraisers, went to Washington DC told a Congressional hearing there is a "better, less-complicated approach" that would modernize the U.S. appraisal regulatory structure by improving quality, reducing costs and addressing fundamental concerns that drive appraisers from the profession.
 
In Capitol Hill testimony before a subcommittee of the House Financial Services Committee, the Appraisal Institute suggested that Congress realign the appraisal regulatory structure with those of other industries in the real estate and mortgage industries. The Appraisal Institute recommended using as a model the National Mortgage Licensing System cooperative among state agencies. "Appraisers are being choked by rules and regulations in nearly every facet of their business," Bill Garber, Appraisal Institute director of government and external relations, said in written testimony. "Appraiser’s’ professional lives have become extremely complicated, more expensive and less productive due to a dated and archaic regulatory structure. Thus, consumers suffer from increased turnaround time, delays in loans and potential higher costs."
 
Noting that the federal regulatory structure for real estate appraisal essentially has been untouched since 1989, the Appraisal Institute’s written testimony said regulation is "overwhelming" appraisers and proving to be "counter-productive" for the profession and for users of appraisal services. "Real estate appraisers face a ‘layering effect’ of rules and regulations that creates a disincentive for potential entry into the profession, while also diminishing the profession’s profitability," the Appraisal Institute said in its written testimony. As examples of these rules, the Appraisal Institute cited background checks with no federal mandate or efficient processing system, and unappealing supervisor-appraiser and trainee-appraiser requirements, among others.
 
"Presently, real estate appraisers pay for the operation and maintenance of the regulatory structure in a variety of ways, including imposing license renewal fees, course requirements, and mandates to purchase rules and regulations. After almost 27 years, it is time to make the appraisal regulatory structure and process more efficient and responsive to the needs of practitioners and consumers," Garber told the subcommittee at the hearing. The subcommittee’s hearing on "Modernizing Appraisals: A Regulatory Review and the Future of the Industry" took place in Room 2128 of the Rayburn House Office Building. Representatives of the Appraisal Subcommittee, The Appraisal Foundation, Clearbox, the National Association of Home Builders and Mountain State Justice, Inc., also were scheduled to testify at the hearing.
 
Nationstar Mortgage now maintains and distributes a monthly Appraiser Exclusionary List. Correspondents are encouraged to review the Nationstar Mortgage Appraiser Exclusionary List prior to submitting a loan for loan purchase.
 
Flagstar has updated its Conventional guidelines to clarify that one-unit properties that contain multiple accessory units on the same property are not permitted.
 
One discussion topic that comes up any time appraisers and/or underwriters have a drink or two is why manufactured housing still has a bad connotation. A recent article from our neighbors to the north is, “Factory Built homes Could Help Cities with Housing Crunch.” These aren’t tiny homes that you see on the backs of the trucks driving on the freeway, or with wheels and a license plate. “The public’s negative perception of new construction methods is a considerable factor that hinders the development and use of modular construction as they are often thought to be similar to mobile homes found in trailer parks.” But, I think it is important to pay attention to the fact that they aren’t mobile homes. These homes can be thousands of square feet. They are built in a factory then transported in blocks and assembled at the building site. There are transportation challenges and perceived product inferiority. The positives are cheaper, faster results, fewer workplace injuries, and construction in a controlled environment. The idea should be considered because in a time when housing pressures mount, alternatives need to be heard.
 
Moving on to interest rates, supply and demand set mortgage rates, not the U.S. Government. Traders have seen a shift in bond markets since post-crisis regulations discouraged lenders from acting as market makers, with investors facing difficulties finding attractive deals due to a lack of trading activity. Two percent of outstanding bonds are traded daily compared with 3.5% in 2008, per SIFMA. That may very well change…
 
In less than one week, mortgage rates have shot up by nearly 0.5% and the global bond market has lost a whopping $1 trillion in value. Gibran Nicholas, CEO of CMPS Institute conducted a webinar this week to give loan originators scripts, charts and graphs to explain what’s been happening in the market. The webinar is called, “Trumponomics: How the Trump Presidency Impacts the Mortgage & Housing Markets.” Click here to “view” the recording.
 
Anyone who didn’t lock prior to Tuesday, if they could have, is ruing that decision, and every LO out there is tending to their locked pipelines, knowing that the market is three points worse and “free” extensions don’t make much sense from an economics perspective. In fact, yesterday the U.S. Treasury market, and agency MBS, took another leg lower although the losses were concentrated in the longer maturities after Fed Chair Yellen maintained her relatively dovish tone in her remarks. The case for a rate hike has begun to build rather rapidly as market-based inflation expectations have ripped higher over the past week, although Yellen merely said that a rate increase could be appropriate "relatively soon."
 
And the economic news of late certainly bears that out. We had a strong jump in housing starts during October, and Initial jobless claims fell to a 43-year low. What do bond traders think? As ThomsonReuters put it, “Further adding to the malaise of 30-year 3% and 3.5%, in particular, was the long end leading the market lower as the recent curve flattening was a welcome reprieve for the MBS basis as traders became more comfortable with their durations. That was being threatened in the afternoon, with the long bond breaking back through 3% with 10s comfortably through 2.25%.” There you have it. But by the end of the day the 10-year sold off .5 in price to close at 2.28% and agency MBS prices worsened .250.
 
There is no scheduled news to move rates, although Leading Economic Indicators is later this morning. There are plenty of Fed Presidents speaking around the country, pretty much all saying the same thing but in sly, subtle, varying ways: rate increase in mid-December. Fortunately, it is pretty much priced into the current market. In the early going the 10-year’s yield is still 2.28% and agency MBS prices are better about .125.
 
 
A young man named John received a parrot as a gift. The parrot had a bad attitude and an even worse vocabulary. Every word out of the bird’s mouth was rude, obnoxious and laced with profanity. John tried and tried to change the bird’s attitude by consistently saying only polite words, playing soft music and anything else he could think of to "clean up" the bird’s vocabulary. Finally, John was fed up and he yelled at the parrot.
The parrot yelled back.
John shook the parrot and the parrot got angrier and even ruder. John, in desperation, threw up his hand, grabbed the bird and put him in the freezer. For a few minutes the parrot squawked and kicked and screamed. Then suddenly there was total quiet. Not a peep was heard for over a minute.
Fearing that he’d hurt the parrot, John quickly opened the door to the freezer.
The parrot calmly stepped out onto John’s outstretched arms and said "I believe I may have offended you with my rude language and actions. I’m sincerely remorseful for my inappropriate transgressions and I fully intend to do everything I can to correct my rude and unforgivable behavior."
John was stunned at the change in the bird’s attitude. As he was about to ask the parrot what had made such a dramatic change in his behavior, the bird continued, "May I ask what the turkey did?"’
 
 
If you’re interested, visit my periodic blog at the STRATMOR Group web site. The current blog is, “Election Day 2016 is Over – Now What?” If you have both the time and inclination, make a comment on what I have written, or on other comments so that folks can learn what’s going on out there from the other readers.
Rob
 
(Market data provided in partnership with MBS Live. For free job postings and to view candidate resumes visit LenderNews. Currently there are over 300 mortgage professionals looking for operations, secondary and management roles. For up-to-date mortgage news visit Mortgage News Daily. For archived commentaries, or to subscribe, go to www.robchrisman.com. Copyright 2016 Chrisman LLC. All rights reserved. Occasional paid job listings do appear. This report or any portion hereof may not be reprinted, sold or redistributed without the written consent of Rob Chrisman.)