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As Housing Affordability Ticks Up, Mortgages May Be Easier to Obtain


Here’s some welcome news for potential homebuyers: One new report shows that mortgages may be becoming easier to obtain, while separate research found that housing affordability is edging upward.

First, the L.A. Times reports on The Mortgage Bankers Association’s latest credit availability index, a closely monitored measure that tracks the availability of mortgage credit. The index shows that requirements may be easing up, in the wake of increasingly tighter rules that were implemented after the housing bust.

In fact, in addition to modestly easing requirements, lenders are also expanding the types of mortgages they offer, the L.A. Times said.

And as we recently reported on MLuxe, the Federal Housing Administration announced a decrease in annual mortgage insurance premiums with the intent of making FHA loans more affordable for prospective buyers – another move that could potentially increase homeowner eligibility.

Meanwhile, the easing mortgage requirements come at a time when other research suggests that homes are becoming more affordable.

Slightly lower interest rates and lower home prices across the country led to an uptick in nationwide housing affordability during the fourth quarter, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB)/Wells Fargo Housing Opportunity Index.

NAHB Chairman Tom Woods described the increased affordability as “a positive development” that’s “in line with what we are hearing from builders in the field that more prospective buyers are starting to move forward in the marketplace.”