Sep. 7: LO jobs; correspondent, broker, liquidity mgt., marketing, AOT products; training & webinars; foreign investment in U.S. drops

“My mother used to say that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach. Wonderful woman, lousy surgeon.” There is some great food in various parts of the nation, and today I will head from Dallas, TX to Jackson, MS, for the Mississippi MBA annual conference. Dallas is certainly home to its share of real estate owned by people outside of the country. But it turns out that annual foreign investment in U.S. existing-home sales declined 9.6 percent to $53.3 billion over the past year and the number of existing homes bought by international buyers declined to 84.6k, the fewest since 2009 and down 14.2 percent from the prior year. The average ($639k) and median ($396k) purchase prices for international buyers were the highest ever recorded by NAR. For those who like lists, China, Mexico, Canada, India, and Colombia were the top five countries of origin by number of U.S. existing homes purchased. The top U.S. destinations for foreign buyers were Florida (23 percent), California and Texas (12 percent each), then at 4 percent each North Carolina, Arizona, and Illinois. (Today’s podcast can be found here and this week’s is sponsored by LoanCare, a Fidelity National Financial (NYSE: FNF) division and award-winning developer of the most sophisticated mortgage servicing portfolio management tool, LoanCare Analytics, built to support MSR investors with a focus on customer engagement, liquidity, and credit risk. Hear an interview with Polunsky Beitel Green’s Marty Green on market participants finally wrapping their heads around the Fed’s hawkishness.)

Employment

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At PrimeLending, we know that a happy team equals happy customers. That’s why we invest so much time and energy into our award-winning culture. Did you know 95 percent of employees at PrimeLending say it’s a great place to work compared to 57 percent of employees at a typical U.S.-based company and 97 percent say they are given the resources to do their job according to Great Place to Work®. And it’s that high level of employee engagement that drives our outstanding customer experience. This past July, STRATMOR found that our Net Promoter Score (a customer loyalty and satisfaction measurement taken from asking customers how likely they are to recommend your company to others) was 84, which is 5 points above the national average. We’re a company that cares about our customers, our communities and each other. If you’re looking for place where appreciation, respect and compassion are always priorities, contact Nic Hartke today!”

Lender and broker products and services

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Need some clarity on the current state of the housing market and home equity (HE) lending? Listen to Black Knight’s Andy Walden and John Holbrook as they join Robbie Chrisman to discuss housing affordability and demand, how interest rates are impacting the market, the types of borrowers holding equity, homeowner constraints and how AI is improving the property valuation process. You’ll also learn how lenders are leveraging AI and a condition-adjusted AVM to accelerate property valuations, increase pull-through and reduce origination costs. Listen to the podcast now.

Are you looking for tools to improve profitability and efficiency in your mortgage loan sale process? In a recent case study, Vellum Mortgage describes how they were able to save $50,000 through AOTs, add three new investors, and save twelve hours a month with MCT. “I always send my bid tapes out to my approved and unapproved investors in BAM Marketplace,” said Ashley Puckett, Senior Capital Markets Analyst at Vellum Mortgage. “It’s great to see those shadow bids come in and then decide if we want to sign up with a certain investor because their executions have been strong lately.” Vellum Mortgage was able to leverage MCT’s software and expertise to achieve their goals after switching from their previous hedge advisor. Read the full case study or join MCT’s newsletter for information on how MCT is helping clients achieve their goals.

The world record for largest billboard spanned 12.7 square miles across Dubai to raise awareness about intellectual property rights. Thankfully for mortgage lenders, there’s a much more practical way to catch the eyes of prospective borrowers. Surefire℠, Black Knight’s CRM and Mortgage Marketing Engine, has an award-winning creative content library that is packed with multimedia marketing collateral that delights, educates, and engages. Turnkey automated marketing campaigns enable lenders to nurture leads and support borrowers across the homeownership journey from application to post-close. For ideas on how to reach borrowers today, check out Surefire’s tips on building a content marketing plan.

“The challenges mortgage lenders are facing are unprecedented, and it is crucial to recognize that the decisions you make now will have a lasting impact on the success and profitability of your company. In the short term, lenders need to be prepared to manage their liquidity appropriately and avoid unnecessary delinquencies as both Q3 and Q4 end on weekends, which will be particularly important when December 29th is the last business day of 2023. As we look to the future with the potential of changing capital rules for banks, lenders need to create a tailored strategy to thrive and regain profitability. At Richey May, our mortgage banking consulting experts are here to help as you make essential decisions regarding your future strategies. To get started on this in-depth exploration, contact us at info@richeymay.com.”

Correspondent and broker channel products

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Our broker partners advised Newrez Wholesale they wanted a conditional loan approval that was easier to read and that would help get borrowers to the finish line faster. We listened. And now, we’re changing the game by introducing an interactive notification featuring direct access to your support team and loan with an all-in-one dynamic contact list for each loan, reorganized conditions highlighting updates with easier navigation, and additional Loan Details providing you with a better line of sight before closing. It launches soon, so to learn more, visit us in booth 412 at NAMB National!

AmeriHome Correspondent, backed by the strength of Western Alliance Bank, continues to grow market share in the correspondent space. When you combine AmeriHome’s industry leading loan purchase platform with Western Alliance Bank’s warehouse lending and treasury management services, this is one “must-have” relationship for mortgage bankers of all shapes and sizes. Financial institutions, IMBs and Emerging Bankers alike benefit from AmeriHome’s Delegated and Non-Delegated options, full suite of conventional and government products, and Bulk, Bulk/AOT and Best-Efforts delivery options. Don’t miss AmeriHome’s Non-Delegated team at NAMB National Sept 9 – 10 in Las Vegas! AmeriHome will also be attending the MBA Annual Convention in Philadelphia from October 15–18. Check out Upcoming Events for details on where they’ll be through year-end, find your sales rep here, or send them an email to learn more about partnering with AmeriHome!

Going to the New England Mortgage Bankers Conference? Connect with the Planet Home Lending Correspondent team at the conference to explore ways to power up your lending by deepening your product lineup. Planet Home Lending specializes in innovative Correspondent solutions that make it easy to offer profitable niche products like renovation, home equity, manufactured housing, buydown, and USDA loans. Reach out to Regional Sales Manager Daniel Hughes (203-981-5743) or VP National Renovation Jim Bopp (203-981-5743) to schedule a meeting. Let’s build your home lending volume together.

Training and event news: this week or at your leisure

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“Many top originators have been able to ignore the slowdown in production thanks to a plan to capture non-QM business. It’s not too late to finish 2023 strong with a little (or a lot) more non-QM in your pipeline. Join us on Thursday, September 21 at 11:00 am PT / 2:00 pm ET for the next National Mortgage Professional Non-QM Townhall presented by ACC Mortgage, Deephaven, and NewFi Wholesale. This invaluable series is moderated by Andrew Berman and features insights from non-QM mavens like Tom Davis, Robert Senko, and John Wise.

In this edition, we’ll cover the state of non-QM, the total market size right now and the biggest opportunities in non-QM. We’ll also dedicate some time to share insights on DSCR including practical tips for working with real estate investors, a snapshot of rent health, and investor appetite for these loans. Register here.”

A good place to start is here, and click on “events.”

Lenders One released a video compilation featuring interviews at Summit, specifically the “Why L1” question. I had the privilege of sitting down and speaking with Lenders One members at the Cooperative’s annual 2023 Summit. During the interviews, each executive was asked why they were L1 members. Hear these answers from your industry peers, including Mickey Schilling, CMB, Keith Canter, Tammie Gravlee, CMB, Sue Melnick, Paul Diamond, Steve Grossman, and Anisa Johnson, in this video. (Interested in learning more about the benefits of membership? Visit L1 or reach out directly to Tricia Migliazzo.)

Kristin Messerli and Dave Savage interviewed over 25 top-notch industry experts and have compiled a wealth of information and findings that have the potential to reshape our understanding of the current market.  Join us for this National MI University webinar as they share key insights from this influential report and provide practical guidance for gaining market share in 2023 and beyond. Click here to register on the National MI University website. (The 2023 State of the Mortgage Industry Half-Time Report Insights with the two of them is today, September 7th, at 1pm ET.)

Want some Freddie Mac Online Trainings? There’s the Best Efforts Overview webinar [1.5 hrs.] – Learn about the Best Efforts execution, contract options and tasks for loan delivery through Loan Selling Advisor®. Resolve®: Requesting a Forbearance Extension tutorial [10 mins] – Learn about the policy on requesting a forbearance extension and how to submit a request through Resolve. HeritageOneSM tutorial [10 mins] – Learn about the HeritageOne mortgage offering, designed to meet the borrowing needs of members of federally-recognized Native American tribes living in tribal areas. Desktop Appraisals: An Appraisal Alternative webinar [1 hr.] – Learn about appraisal requirements and what to look for on your Loan Product Advisor® (LPASM) Feedback Certificate. Automated Income Assessment Using Tax Transcript Data learning clip [2 mins] – Become an expert on how you can request a tax transcript from the IRS and have LPA assess the tax transcript data for income reported on IRS form Schedule C. ACE+ PDR (automated collateral evaluation plus property data report) at-a-glance reference – See how purchase transactions are now available to receive an ACE+ PDR offer.

But Freddie’s not done! Got 5 Minutes? Having trouble finding time to increase your knowledge? Here are some opportunities from Freddie Mac for you to learn all in about five minutes or less. Total MISM Cancellations learning clip – Learn about Freddie Mac’s first step toward re-imagining the mortgage insurance cancellations process. PAID: Reconciling Payments Using eBill learning clip: See how to confirm and reconcile your PAID payments using eBill. What is Online Help? learning clip: Discover the benefits of using online help. Purchase Contracts Overview learning clip: Learn about Freddie Mac’s purchase contracts, contract types and the contract life cycle. Loan Pipeline: Action/Function Buttons learning clip: Learn how to use the Action/Function buttons to manage the Loan Pipeline in Loan Selling Advisor®.

Tomorrow, Friday the 8th, is The Mortgage Collaborative’s Rundown covering current events in the mortgage market for 30-45 minutes starting at noon PT in “The Rundown”. TMC’s big event, Music to My Ears, runs this Sunday through Tuesday, September 10-12, in Nashville. Say hi if you come!

National MI upcoming September 2023 webinar sessions.

The Knowledge Coop’s new membership platform offers all state and federal Continuing Education courses in an engaging and exciting video format that you’re sure to actually enjoy. Want to give yourself a sharper competitive edge? They also offer in-depth training on specific topics like VA Loans and FHA within their Coop Academy. Get access to industry experts and connect with other mortgage professionals all in one space. Use Code Chrisman10 for 10 percent off your first year of membership here.

Capital markets: the Fed’s Beige Book sums things up

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Treasury yields climbed yesterday after a stronger-than-estimated ISM Services PMI, a reading on the U.S. services industry, boosted speculation that the Fed will keep interest rates at current levels for longer. The August ISM reading not only marked an expansion in services sector activity but an acceleration in the pace of expansion versus July. Prices also increased at a faster pace, casting doubt on benign inflation pricing.

The Fed’s Beige Book for August was released yesterday afternoon and described overall growth as modest with stronger than expected spending on tourism while retail spending slowed. Some consumers have exhausted their savings and began relying more on debt. Supply chain delays improved while housing inventory remained low. Job growth was “subdued across the nation” with “many” businesses reporting ongoing difficulties hiring and retaining skilled workers while price growth slowed from the previous report. As a reminder, the Fed’s Beige Book is a survey of contacts throughout the private sector.

Today’s calendar is already underway with weekly jobless claims (216k, down from 228k; 1.679 million continuing claims, a big drop) and final Q2 productivity and unit labor costs (3.5, 2.2 percent, respectively) reflecting the downward revisions to real GDP published last week (2.1 percent annualized in the second quarter, down from 2.4 percent in the advance estimate) and downward revisions to employment in the August jobs report. Expect initial jobless claims to be volatile over the next few weeks, due to the effects of Tropical Storm Hilary on the West Coast and Hurricane Idalia in the Southeast. Jobless claims historically fall around natural disasters then spike afterwards as impacted workers file delayed claims for missed work.

Later this morning brings the Treasury’s announcement of the details of the mini-Refunding (consisting of $44 billion 3-year notes, $35 billion reopened 10-year notes, and $20 billion reopened 30-year bonds), Freddie Mac’s latest Primary Mortgage Markets Survey, and a laundry list of Fed speakers before the Federal Open Market Committee goes into its blackout period next week ahead of the September 19/20 meeting. We begin the day with Agency MBS prices worse slightly than Wednesday evening, the 10-year yielding 4.30 after closing yesterday at 4.29 percent, and the 2-year is at 5.03 with the continued strength in the labor market.

(Warning: Rated PG for language.)

The National Transportation Safety Board recently divulged they had funded a project with the U.S. auto makers for the past five years. The NTSB covertly funded a project whereby the auto makers were installing black boxes in four-wheel drive pickup trucks in an effort to determine, in serious accidents, the circumstances in the last 15 seconds before the crash.

They were surprised to find in 49 of the 50 states the last words of drivers in 61.2 percent of crashes were, “Oh, s–t!”

Only the state of Texas was different, where 89.3 percent of the final words were, “Hey y’all, hold my beer and watch this!”

Visit www.robchrisman.com for more information on our industry partners, access archived commentaries, or to subscribe to the Daily Mortgage News and Commentary. If you’re interested, visit my periodic blog at the STRATMOR Group web site. STRATMOR’s current blog is titled, “Improving Revenue Might Be Right Under Your Nose.” The Commentary’s podcast is live and at any place you obtain your podcasts (like Apple or Spotify).

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(Market data provided in partnership with MBS Live. For free job postings and to view candidate resumes visit LenderNews. This newsletter is for sophisticated mortgage professionals only. There are no paid endorsements by me. For up-to-date mortgage news visit Mortgage News Daily. For archived commentaries, or to subscribe, go to www.robchrisman.com. Copyright 2023 Chrisman LLC. All rights reserved. Occasional paid job & product 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