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2015 Refinance Activity Good News For Notary Signing Agents

Mortgage Refi 5

Updated 1-29-15

A significant drop in mortgage interest rates — combined with lower federal insurance premiums — helped jumpstart 2015 refinance activity, and that should mean more business for Notary signing agents in the coming months.

Bump In Mortgage Applications
 

The year started off with a bang, reaching multi-year performance peaks in consecutive weeks.

Total mortgage applications in the first week of January jumped 49 percent from the previous week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. That was the largest weekly gain since November 2008.

Refinance activity posted a 66-percent hike to a level not seen since July 2013.

Refinance volume jumped another 22 percent in the second week of January. Refis made up nearly three quarters of total mortgage applications volume, the highest level since May 2013.

To put that in context, refinances made up only 43 percent of total loan volume in 2014.

Low Mortgage Rates And Insurance Premiums
 

“Mortgage rates reached their lowest level since May of 2013, and refinance application volume soared,” said Mike Fratantoni, MBA’s Chief Economist. Interest rates on 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages dropped to 3.66 percent. The rates for 15-year, fixed-rate loans dropped to 2.9 percent.

Frank Nothaft, chief economist for secondary mortgage giant Freddie Mac, attributed the drop in rates to a strengthening economy — helped by plummeting oil prices and a better-than-expected job outlook.

But that wasn’t the only factor encouraging more homeowners to refinance their loans, Fratantoni noted. The Federal Housing Administration announced earlier this month that it was lowering mortgage insurance premiums on the loans it backs.

This move is expected to save more than two million homeowners an average of $900 annually and spur 250,000 new homebuyers to purchase their first home over the next three years, according to a statement from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, which oversees the FHA.

More Business For NSAs
 

Freddie Mac’s latest housing market forecast expects interest rates to remain low for the first two quarters of the year before inching up in the second half of 2015.

The latest MBA forecast supports that prognosis. The trade group expects refinance volume to outpace last year’s numbers through the first two quarters of 2015.

That’s good news for mobile Notaries. The low interest rates will encourage more homeowners to refinance their mortgages, meaning more assignments for NSAs.

Michael Lewis is Managing Editor of member publications for the National Notary Association.

6 Comments

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Rod Foster

26 Jan 2015

please inform me about on-line signings for the state of Florida. Can mortgage companies sign someone up totally on-line now without a notary? if so, what % of companies are practicing this now.

IRENE VANN

26 Jan 2015

Looking for Notary work . I am in San Antonio, Texas

Denise

29 Jan 2015

Looking for signing agent work. Contact me please.

Carol Simpson

02 Feb 2015

Notary work in moody, alabama

Ava Rappaport

03 Feb 2015

Needing Notary work.

Barbara Gourley

12 Feb 2015

Notary in Nags Head (Outer Banks), NC. Also available as proctor.

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