July 7: MI, correspondent, & AE jobs; Millennials: rent levels & demographics vs. credit scores and lack of starter homes

Doug T. writes, “There’s a strange new trend in the office: people are putting names on food in the company fridge to keep them cold. Today I had a sandwich named Kevin.” There are some real estate markets that are anything but cold, but what is a “hot” housing market? The West Coast has seen an ebbing of all-cash Asian buyers, but markets are still good. Pro Teck Valuation Services (a national provider of residential real estate valuations) came up with its definition, and variety of factors, to determine a “hot” housing market. (Remember that site, “Am I hot or Am I Not”? That’s a whole other topic.)


Switching gears to job opportunities, Redwood Trust is searching for Sr. Jumbo Underwriters in its Denver, CO office. The position requires expert mortgage underwriting and credit knowledge, clear communication skills, consistently outstanding client service, and proven problem solving and decision making skills. The successful candidate will have a high level of interaction with internal parties (trading, sales, legal and compliance, structured finance) and external parties (Sellers, 3rd party service providers). Ideal candidates will have 7 years of mortgage experience with at least 2 years of Jumbo underwriting. The Jumbo Underwriter is client-facing, and will interact with correspondent sellers on a regular basis. Please send resumes or questions to Michael Gramsas.


Private Mortgage Insurance company Genworth Financial is seeking a new Account Executive for its Louisiana and Arkansas territories. Candidates should have exceptional customer interaction, sales execution, and leadership skills, and is expected to provide the highest level of internal and external customer service, manage customer relationships, and develop growth strategies for assigned accounts. The successful candidate will be responsible for developing calling plans to cover all assigned accounts, monitor branch volume and calling activity, and take necessary actions to achieve account volume goals. They will execute and lead implementation of Genworth products and initiatives, and identify and communicate new opportunities to provide solutions to customer needs. The ideal candidate will have 4+ years of experience in a sales role, have a college degree or equivalent industry/sales experience, strong presentation and communication skills, and have the ability to work flexible hours with occasional overnight travel. Interested Candidates should send their resume to Kristin Miller.


In correspondent job news Impac Mortgage Corp. is expanding its Correspondent division and is looking for a seasoned, ambitious, entrepreneurial Account Executive for the Mid/South Atlantic territory (VA, WV, NC, SC, KY, TN). AEs can sell both Delegated and Non Delegated correspondents a full product line, including an innovative non QM line, FHA, VA, and Conventional. Impac Mortgage Correspondent is a top mortgage lender and warehouse capital provider working with mortgage bankers, community banks, regional banks and credit unions in 48 states. If you are looking for an exciting opportunity with boundless earning potential, email your resume to Rick Cardillo or have a confidential conversation with him 214-762-3772.


Brokers and potential AEs should know that Western Bancorp is experiencing a high level of growth not just in their superior jumbo product offerings but also in their FannieReady product. Western Bancorp is known for their no non-sense underwriting and they know that sometimes it takes more than an automated engine to make a loan determination. With their highly skilled underwriting team, they do just that. Manual underwriting and options that embrace loans from manufactured homes to Menlo Park mansions, they continue to help the originator close more loans. Recently, they welcomed their newest team members Karl Wood, Southern California Regional Manager and Jim Stewart, Northern California Regional Manager. Each come with extensive and well respected industry experience building high-level sales teams and they are hiring account executives in many territories in California. If interested, contact Stacy Hartmann, EVP of Production.


Also in the West First California Mortgage Company, founded in 1977 and active throughout the U.S., announced the hiring of Joe McKone as Executive Vice President – National Production and Christina Baker as Director-National Retail Operations. In this new role Mr. McKone oversees all loan origination channels across retail, wholesale, consumer direct and other specialized markets, and will oversee First Cal operations as well. Ms. Baker focuses on managing the retail loan pipeline across First Cal’s growing 20-state network, and oversees retail processes and procedures. Congrats!


Back in April Millennials surpassed Baby Boomers as the nation’s largest living generation, according to population estimates by the U.S. Census Bureau. “Millennials, whom we define as those ages 18-34 in 2015, now number 75.4 million, surpassing the 74.9 million Baby Boomers (ages 51-69).” That means that rascally generation is now 19-35. Let’s just stick with the Census Bureau’s definition.


Every time I mention Millennials to my cat Myrtle she gives me a look as if to ask, “How long will everyone take to realize that Millennials are in no hurry to marry, have kids, or save up enough money and then finance a house? It will happen eventually – why are lenders and real estate agents pushing them? Still it doesn’t stop the fascination with their every move but the ones that I talk to aren’t too excited about constantly being under the microscope.” Yes, that was all conveyed by Myrtle’s look.


The CPI report indicates apartment rents climbed 0.4% in May to a record high, marking the 67th consecutive month of increases. As of the end of 2015 about 37% of households were renters, the highest level since the 1960s.


Sure enough, the latest analysis by Pew finds that the most common living arrangements for Millennials are: living with parents (32%), married or cohabitating (32%), living alone or with roommates (14%) and other living arrangement (22%). The percentage of those living at home is the highest on record.


More millennials are living with their parents than they are with a partner or significant other, for the first time in the modern era. This is probably a reflection of a lot of things – from the weak economy to people getting married later in life. However, it does represent pent-up demand for housing. And eventually Pampers, right? CNBC echoed that more young adults aged 18-34 live at home with Mom and Dad than in any other arrangement.


Zillow’s Chief Economist writes, “With home prices and rents rising as fast as they are, it’s a common assumption that young adults in many cases cannot afford to live alone. Though that may be true in some markets, there’s still a large number of amazing places across the U.S. that are prime for millennials to thrive independently.” Those in Richmond and Pittsburgh are bucking the trend according to data from Zillow. Its data found that 8.9 per cent of millennials live alone but in Richmond it’s 15 per cent and in Pittsburgh 14.3 per cent.  Millennials are also more likely than average to live alone in Buffalo, NY; Columbus, OH; Virginia Beach, VA; Cleveland; New Orleans; Austin, TX; Kansas City, MO; and Oklahoma City.


Let’s track them every month through “Big Data!” The recent Ellie Mae Millennial Tracker, which shows that among primary millennial borrowers that are women, more than 60 percent are single while only 38 percent are married. This is a striking difference from male primary borrowers, where just 41 percent are single. Women were listed as the primary borrower on nearly one-third (32 percent) of closed loans. What are the top MSAs by percentage of millennial loans closed? Columbia, Mo., Jonesboro, Ark. and Sioux Falls, S.D. Ellie Mae perused its database and found that FHA loans continued to be popular among millennials, making up 37 percent of their closed loans (which is significantly higher than the 23% FHA loans for the general population). But check this out: in its database Ellie Mae found that the average FICO score (how about credit score?) was 722 for all closed Millennial loans in May.


Speaking of Millennials, the high student loan debt is causing lower credit scores. The average credit score for the 18-34 age cohort is 625, compared to the national average of 667. Almost a third of that age cohort have sub-600 scores. Good luck getting a loan with that. Finally, all of the new post-2008 regulations have added anywhere form 50k-100k to the cost of building a starter home, making it difficult for builders to make homes that are affordable for the first-time homebuyer.


If they can purchase, what kind of houses are they buying? A tight supply of starter homes is pushing prices up 9% per year in that segment, more than double the price appreciation at the high end. This is a combination of lower foreign demand for luxury homes and increasing demand by Millennials who want to buy.


Mark Fowler with The Futures Company, writes, “2016 is the year that Millennials said goodbye to their teenaged years—the cohort is now 20-37 years old and runs the gamut of graduating college to buying a home to starting a family. In short, it’s no longer acceptable to think of Millennials as kids or youth. That title goes to the Centennials, the generation made up 78 million consumers aged 0-19.


“It’s no secret that Millennials are a demographically-diverse group, but their diversity among life stages makes them an even more complex cohort. At The Futures Company, we often divide Millennials into two segments; Emerging Millennials (20-28) and Adult Millennials (29-37). Younger Emerging Millennials are just beginning to form their worldviews, while Adult Millennials have a much more concrete vision of their future.


“Adult Millennials are right in the midst of life stage transitions that make them an incredibly attractive marketing target: they’re buying homes (in many instances, their first); they’re getting married; they’re having children; they’re settling into career paths and building wealth.


“Financially, Emerging Millennials are still struggling to find a foothold, build their savings and contribute to the economy, with a Median Household Income of $47.7K.  Adult Millennials with a Median Household Income of $72.6K are fueling the economic engine while juggling expenses for houses, spouses, kids and careers.  Specific to Mortgage, 17% of Emerging Millennials have a mortgage where 37% of Adult Millennials have a mortgage.


“However, both groups of Millennials they still face rather grim economic realities. 58% of the Millennials feel they are living paycheck to paycheck. Nearly 1/3 of Millennials are experience severe or high levels of economic anxiety. 40% of Emerging Millennials are worried about paying their monthly bills and 60% are worried about paying off their student loans.”


Some companies are certainly paying attention to the trends. A recent press release noted that millennials currently account for one in three home purchases, and this rate is expected to increase in the coming years. By some estimates, Millennials will spend up to $2 trillion in real estate purchases over the next five years. In an effort to reach this target audience, National MI has partnered with Cultural Outreach Solutions, LLC (COS) founded by Kristin Messerli. This partnership allows National MI to offer its lender customers training on attracting Millennial home buyers to help its employees and customers target and connect with the Millennial generation. COS and National MI develop content and informational sessions that illustrate what Millennials expect from the home purchase process, and how mortgage professionals can build trust and collaborate effectively with this home-buying generation.


Turning to the capital markets, no one is complaining about rates, unless you’re having to fork over money for early payoff penalties, or coughing up money for margin calls to broker-dealers. But Wednesday rates stopped heading downward after the ISM Services Index blew past expectations for June. And the minutes from the FOMC’s June meeting showed that the committee wanted to see more information before hiking rates again – particularly following the May jobs data. The good ol’ 10-year T-Note hit a low yield of 1.32% and then shot up to 1.40%


The FOMC minutes for June, pre-Brexit of course, showed that most participants judged that, in the absence of significant economic or financial shocks, raising the target range for the federal funds rate would be appropriate if incoming information confirmed that economic growth had picked up. Real GDP was projected to rise a little slower in the second half of this year than in the previous forecast and to increase at about the same pace thereafter.


Today, ahead of the jobs data tomorrow, we’ve already had the June Challenger Job Cuts (38k, pretty low), June ADP Employment Change (172k, higher than forecast), and Initial Jobless Claims for the week ending 7/2 (-16k to 254k). After these numbers we find the 10-year yielding 1.39% after closing yesterday at 1.39% and agency MBS prices worse a shade versus yesterday’s closing levels.



(Political humor is posted without regard to policy or politics of the commentary writer.)


* Democrats don’t understand THE DEBT CEILING

* Republicans don’t understand THE DEBT CEILING

* Liberals don’t understand THE DEBT CEILING

* Conservatives don’t understand THE DEBT CEILING


SO – Allow me to explain…

Let’s say you come home from work and find there has been a sewer backup in your neighborhood. Your home has sewage all the way up to your ceilings. What do you think you should do? Raise the ceilings or pump out the “stuff”? Your choice is coming in November. Don’t miss the opportunity.





(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.)

Rob Chrisman