In this Issue 

June 2022 Edition


Presidents Message

Legislative Update

State News & Events

Annual Golf Outing

Peer Chat

Online Event Calendar

Chapter News & Events

Milwaukee Chapter News + Events 

Madison Chapter News + Events

MBA Updates

Upcoming Educational Webinars

Other News


WMBA Members,

Thank you to everyone that joined us on June 8th as we installed the newest Board of Directors of the WMBA. A big thank you to Fairway Independent Mortgage Corp. for allowing us to hold this event at their headquarters in Madison. And a special thank you to Pete Stebbins of Fairway for his continued dedication to the WMBA and working to keep this organization moving forward. It has been an honor and a privilege to serve as the President of the WMBA. The time I have spent with this organization is time that I will never forget. I know that this organization will be in great hands with our newest Directors and your 2022-2023 WMBA President, Chad Laipple of U.S. Bank Home Mortgage. 

I am proud to announce that our Annual Golf Outing will be taking place this year on September 8th at the Grand Geneva Resort and Spa. Registration and sponsorship opportunities are open! This event includes an 18-hole scramble, lunch, prizes, networking, and dinner. Please consider registering to enjoy a great day of golf and supporting our wonderful organization. Regstration and sponsorship details can be at our 2022 Golf Outing Website.

Thank you again to everyone who has renewed their membership for another year with WMBA. The continued support of our members is what makes our organization so great. Our administrators are busily working behind the scenes to process payments and update your organization’s member listings in the database. Questions about the renewal process, including dues and database info, can be directed to our association administrators at
We look forward to seeing you at the Annual Golf Outing!
Thank you,

Joe Doyle


Joe Doyle, CMB, AMP
WMBA President 2021-2022
Account Manager, Wisconsin & Northern IL
Arch Mortgage Insurance Company | (414) 526-9510 
2022-2023 Board of Directors

Congratulations to all of our newest Directors!

President - Chad Laipple, U.S. Bank Home Mortgage

President Elect - Carl Pietraszewski, U.S. Bank Home Mortgage

Treasurer - Amy Gile-Enge, Capitol Bank

Past President - Rob Helvey, Waukesha State Bank

Newly Elected Board of Directors -

Steven Luebke, North Shore Bank

Kimberly Klaetsch, National Exchange Bank & Trust

Don Lickel, Landmark Credit Union

Mike Hall, Arch MI



Legislative Update - Buddy Julius

State news...

Sales tax revenues increase.

The latest Department of Revenue report shows sales tax revenues for the current fiscal year are 12.2% higher over the year.  General sales and use tax revenue for the period covering mid-July 2021 to the end of March 2022 was nearly $4.5 billion, compared to just under $4 billion for the same period of fiscal year 2021.

DOR cautioned, however, that inflation is impacting the figures as higher prices drive higher sales taxes.  Still, the Department said the revenue growth is the strongest the state has seen in at least a decade.

Meanwhile, corporate tax revenues are 12.3% higher over the same timeframe, reaching nearly $1.9 billion in the latest report.

Joint Finance Committee alters Evers' transportation funding plans.

JFC this week tweaked the Evers administration's plan for an extra $283 million in federal transportation funds, including a ban on using a small pot of the money for bike trails.  The bulk of the extra money flowing into Wisconsin this fiscal year comes from the federal Bipartisan Infrastructure Bill.

WisDOT proposed using $123.6 million the funds for state highway rehabilitation, with $83.8 million for local transportation facilities and $60.7 million for local bridge improvements.  All three were approved by the Committee 11-4.

But the committee placed restrictions on nearly $4.3 million that will go into the Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality Improvement Program. That provides funding for projects that cut transportation-related pollution or reduce congestion.  The motion specifies the funds may only be used for highway right-of-way improvements that reduce congestion or improve traffic flow, as well as traffic signaling improvements.

JCRAR removes AirBnb restrictions on home pools.

The Joint Committee for the Review of Administrative Rules this week reversed a Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection rule that prohibited AirBnb owners from including home swimming pool access in their rental agreements unless they obtained a license and made improvements to bring the pools into compliance with commercial standards.  

The move comes as DATCP is working on a new rule to regulate those pools differently and avoid issues brought up during public testimony on the move.

The hotel and lodging industry testified in support of the existing rules and opposed making changes arguing homeowners on AirBnb should have to comply with the same rules as hotels.

Finalists announced for UW-Madison Chancellor.

The UW System this week announced five finalists to succeed Chancellor Rebecca Blank at UW-Madison.  They are:

  • Anne Cudd, provost and senior vice chancellor and professor of philosophy at the University of Pittsburgh;
  • Marie Lynn Miranda, professor of applied computational mathematics and former provost at the University of Notre Dame;
  • Jennifer Mnookin, dean of the School of Law and Ralph and Shirley professor of law at the University of California;
  • Daniel Reed, presidential professor of computational science and former provost at the University of Utah; and
  • John Karl Scholz, provost at UW-Madison and the Nellie June Gray professor of economic policy.

Campaigns & elections...

Tim Michels launches bid for Governor.

Michels, a co-owner of Michels Corp., this week joined the GOP primary for Governor.  He held a launch event at Michels Corp. HQ in Brownsville in front of about 200 supporters.  Michels is a former Army Ranger and previously ran for the US Senate in 2004, losing to the incumbent, Russ Feingold.

Along with his announcement, Michels launched a $1 million advertising campaign reintroducing himself to voters.  Michels is expected to contribute millions to his own campaign.

Critics immediately questioned his ownership stake in Michels Corp., which does hundreds of millions of dollars with the State of Wisconsin in construction contracts.  Later in the week, Michels said he would divest from Michaels if he is elected and will take a leave of absence during the campaign.

US Senate Democratic primary tightens; Ron Johnson still underwater.

The Marquette University Poll showed Milwaukee Bucks executive Alex Lasry gaining ground on Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes.  Barnes was at 19%, Lasry at 16% and State Treasurer Sarah Godlewski at 7% and Outagamie County Executive Tom Nelson at 5%.  Lasry was within the margin of error on Barnes.

Both Lasry and Godlewski have been running multi-million ad campaigns largely funded with their own wealth.  But 48% of those who plan to vote in the primary three months from now are undecided.

The poll showed Dems are still unfamiliar with the candidates. Fifty-seven percent didn't have an opinion of Barnes, the best number of the four leading Democratic candidates. More than three-fourths of primary voters didn't have an opinion of Nelson.

Incumbent Ron Johnson, meanwhile, had a 36% approval rating with 46% disapproving.

Evers' approval rating positive despite majority who think state is headed in the wrong direction.

Just 36% of voters say they believe the state is headed in the right direction, while 56% say it's on the wrong track.  That's worse than the 39-53 split in Marquette's February poll.

Still, Gov. Evers maintains a 49-43 job approval rating.  The Governor also got good marks for his handling of the coronavirus, with 60% approving and 38% disapproving. That's up from a 53-40 split in October, the last time the question was asked. Then, the state was on the verge of a spike in cases, which have dropped significantly since then.

Kleefisch leads in GOP primary for Governor but the impact of Michel's candidacy remains unclear.

Former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch got support from 32% of GOP primary voters while businessman Kevin Nicholson was at 8% and State Rep. Tim Ramthun was at 5%.

The poll has only limited value since it didn't include Michels Corp. Executive Tim Michels who only launched his campaign this week.

Most skeptical voters also most likely to vote again in 2022.

Among the more interesting findings of the Marquette poll was that those who are least likely to have confidence in the 2020 presidential results are the most enthusiastic about voting again in 2022.  

Among Republicans who are very confident in the 2020 election results, 46 percent are very enthusiastic to vote this year. Among those who are not at all confident in the results, 69 percent are very enthusiastic to vote.

This is an actual poll result.

Sen. Kooyenga to retire after all.

State Sen. Dale Kooyenga (R-Brookfield) announced this week he would not run for reelection this fall.  He had been the subject of much uncertainty around redistricting after the maps originally approved by the State Supreme Court drew him out of his suburban Milwaukee 5th district and into the 8th district alongside incumbent Alberta Darling (R-River Hills).  Since the 8th District is not up for reelection this year, that left Kooyenga without a district to run in and would require him to move or leave the Legislature.

After the US Supreme Court struck down the state court's decision, however, the State Supreme Court approved new maps that kept Sen. Kooyenga in his 5th district.  He promptly announced he would run for reelection only to reverse himself again this week.

Trump needles Speaker Vos over election investigation.

The Speaker last year hired former Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman to investigate the 2020 election outcome after former President Trump and others put pressure on him.  Biden carried Wisconsin by nearly 21,000 votes, an outcome that has survived recounts, partisan and nonpartisan reviews and numerous lawsuits.  That investigation was supposed to wrap-up this week.

But Trump this week issued a statement calling for the investigation to continue and threatening primary challenges for elected officials who try to shut it down, a not-so-veiled threat towards Speaker Vos.

In the aftermath, Vos said the investigation would continue without adding to its original budget and with Gableman agreeing to a pay cut.

Covid-19 news...

Latest numbers.

The 7-day average for daily cases continued to slowly increase reaching 1159 per day from 832 a week ago and a recent low of 316.  Cases remain well below the January peak of 18,000, however.  The 7-day average for confirmed Covid-19 deaths stayed flat at 1 per day from a high of 38 in January.

The WI Hospital Association reports rising hospitalizations.  There are 212 people hospitalized with Covid-19, up from 156 a week ago.  Of those, 36 are in ICUs, up from 32 a week ago.

DHS warns of increasing risk.

DHS Chief Medical Officer Ryan Westergaard during a virtual press conference this week said Wisconsin is seeing mild to moderate increases in coronavirus cases as vaccine protections wane and groups gather more closely more frequently during the warmer spring weather.

He said the risk of infection is not as high as it was in January, but it's higher than several weeks back. Omicron subvariant BA.2 is partially driving that increase, Westergaard said.

Have a great weekend,

Ryan, Buddy & Cynthia
The Firm Consulting

Upcoming Statewide Events 

2022-2023 Annual Golf Outing

Please join the WMBA on September 8th for a day of golfing and networking at the Grand Geneva Resort & Spa.

This year's outing will be played on the Highlands Course.


10:30 - 11:45 am ..... Registration & Putting Contest
11:00 - 11:45 am ..... Box Lunch
11:45 am ................. Golfers to Carts/Announcements
12:00 pm ................. Shotgun Start
4:30pm.....................Cocktails/Cash bar
5:00pm......................Dinner / Prize Announcements

Dinner will be served immediately following golf.  The program will begin when the last group begins dinner.


$175   Individual Golfer
$700   Foursome
$45     Dinner Only

Mulligans:    4 for $25 (1 per player)
                      8 for $40 (2 per player)
                      Orange Ball for $20 (1 per Foursome) 

Orange Ball Mulligan – Each team that purchases an orange golf ball must be used by a different golfer in the group on every hole. The ball must rotate consecutively amongst all golfers in the group. The object is to not lose the ball for the entire 18 holes. Any teams that complete the round with the ball still in possession are then entered into the drawing for a prize.

Registration for the Annual Golf Outing is Open!
Click below to register


Sponsorship for the Annual Golf Outing is Open!


2022 Real Estate & Finance Conference

Save the Date!

The WMBA is happy to announce that the Real Estate Conference will be taking place this year on November 3rd at the Wilderness Resort in the Wisconsin Dells.

Registration is coming soon! Stay tuned for more details.

 Statewide Peer Chat

A new feature on the member website page is a discussion forum where you can add your comments to a posted topic or suggest another topic. There are currently three topics posted including: 

- eClosings - Remote Online Notarization
- Closings at your bank or company
- How are you effectively managing your remote staff?

You can find the Peer Chat at:

Online Event Calendar

Check out the new Online Event Calendar on the WMBA website that will include Statewide events, Board Meetings, Chapter Events and Educational Events. If you have an event to add, use the Suggest Event feature to give us the details to add to the calendar.

The calendar can be found at:

Milwaukee Chapter Events

The Milwaukee Chapter is hosting a social event on June 16th. Join us for all you can eat & drink at this baseball outing for the Milwaukee Milkmen. 

For registraton and event details, please click here.

Visit the Milwaukee Chapter Webpage for new events + chapter updates.

Madison Chapter Events

Madison Chapter Annual Golf Outing
Location: Pleasant View Golf Course
1322 N Pleasant View Road
Middleton,WI 53562
Course Website
Date: Thursday, June 2, 2022
Agenda:   9:15 - Check in for teams
Please arrive half an hour prior to check-in
10:00 - First group starts
Registration Fee:

$125.00 per individual golfer
$500.00 per foursome

Registration includes: 1 round of golf, a cart, boxed lunch, one raffle ticket for prizes, and networking afterwards.
Registration Deadline: May 27th

$150.00 with signage and opportunity to staff hole.

Please call Lori O at 608-234-0812 or Amy C at 608-220-2729 with any questions.

Event Registration

Visit the Madison Chapter Webpage for new events + chapter updates.

MBA Update

Mortgage Application Payments Jumped 5 Percent to $1,736 in March

WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 28, 2022) - Homebuyer affordability declined in March, with the national median payment applied for by applicants rising 5.0 percent to $1,736 from $1,653 in February. This is according to the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA) new Purchase Applications Payment Index (PAPI), which measures how new monthly mortgage payments vary across time – relative to income – using data from MBA’s Weekly Applications Survey (WAS).

“The start of the spring homebuying season is off to a mixed start. The healthy labor market and robust wage gains fueled demand throughout the country in March, but rapid home-price growth and the 42-basis-point surge in mortgage rates last month slowed purchase application activity. A typical borrower’s principal and interest payment was $387 more than in March 2021,” said Edward Seiler, MBA's Associate Vice President, Housing Economics, and Executive Director, Research Institute for Housing America. “Swift price-appreciation, sky-high inflation, low inventory, and mortgage rates now two percentage points higher than last year are all headwinds for the housing market in the coming months – especially for first-time buyers.”

Added Seiler, “MBA’s updated forecast calls for an annual decline in existing sales, higher home prices and mortgage rates, and a smaller, but solid 4 percent gain in purchase origination volume.”

An increase in MBA’s PAPI – indicative of declining borrower affordability conditions – means that the mortgage payment to income ratio (PIR) is higher due to increasing application loan amounts, rising mortgage rates, or a decrease in earnings. A decrease in the PAPI – indicative of improving borrower affordability conditions – occurs when loan application amounts decrease, mortgage rates decrease, or earnings increase.

The national PAPI (Figure 1) increased 5.0 percent to 150.9 in March from 143.7 in February, meaning payments on new mortgages take up a larger share of a typical person’s income. Compared to March 2021 (122.9), the index jumped 22.8 percent. For borrowers applying for lower-payment mortgages (the 25th percentile), the national mortgage payment increased 3.2 percent to $1,129 from $1,094 in February.

MBA’s national mortgage payment to rent ratio (MPRR) increased to 1.38 in March (highest since 2010) from 1.32 in February, 1.22 in January, and 1.15 in December 2021, meaning mortgage payments for home purchases have increased relative to rents. The national median asking rent in first-quarter 2022 increased 4.0 percent on a quarterly basis to $1,255. The 25th percentile mortgage application payment to median asking rent ratio was 0.90 in March, up from 0.87 in February and 0.74 in December 2021.

Additional Key Findings of MBA's Purchase Applications Payment Index (PAPI) – March 2022

  • The national median mortgage payment applied for by applicants was $1,736 in March, up from $1,653 in February, $1,526 in January, and $1,349 in March 2021.
  • The national median mortgage payment for FHA loan applicants was $1,254 in March, up from $1,201 in February and $1,018 in March 2021.
  • The national median mortgage payment for conventional loan applicants was $1,819 in March, up from $1,750 in February and $1,424 in March 2021.
  • The top five states with the highest PAPI were: Idaho (241.2), Nevada (223.9), Arizona (200.7), California (192.5), and Utah (190.9).
  • The top five states with the lowest PAPI were: Washington, D.C. (89.1), Alaska (98.1), Connecticut (98.4), West Virginia (106.8), and Louisiana (107.1).
  • Homebuyer affordability decreased for Black households, with the national PAPI increasing from 146.5 in February to 153.8 in March.
  • Homebuyer affordability decreased for Hispanic households, with the national PAPI increasing from 137.5 in February to 144.4 in March.
  • Homebuyer affordability decreased for White households, with the national PAPI increasing from 144.4 in February to 151.6 in March.

About MBA’s Purchase Applications Payment Index

The Mortgage Bankers Association’s Purchase Applications Payment Index (PAPI) measures how new mortgage payments vary across time relative to income. Higher index values indicate that the mortgage payment to income ratio (PIR) is higher than in a month where the index is lower. Contrary to other affordability indexes that make multiple assumptions about mortgage underwriting criteria to estimate mortgage payment level, PAPI directly uses MBA’s Weekly Applications Survey (WAS) data to calculate mortgage payments. 

PAPI uses usual weekly earnings data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Current Population Survey (CPS). Usual weekly earnings represent full-time wage and salary earnings before taxes and other deductions and include any overtime pay, commissions, or tips usually received. Note that data are not seasonally adjusted.

The rent data series calculated for MBA’s national mortgage payment to rent ratio (MPRR) comes from the U.S. Census Bureau’s Housing Vacancies and Homeownership (HVS) survey’s median asking rent. The HVS data is quarterly, and as such, the mortgage payment to rent ratio will be updated quarterly.

For additional information on MBA’s Purchase Applications Payment Index, click here.
For more information, please contact Adam DeSanctis at 202-557-2727

Mortgage Applications Decrease in Latest MBA Weekly Survey

WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 27, 2022) - 

Mortgage applications decreased 8.3 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending April 22, 2022. 

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, decreased 8.3 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. On an unadjusted basis, the Index decreased 7 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index decreased 9 percent from the previous week and was 71 percent lower than the same week one year ago. The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index decreased 8 percent from one week earlier. The unadjusted Purchase Index decreased 7 percent compared with the previous week and was 17 percent lower than the same week one year ago.

“With mortgage rates increasing last week to the highest level since 2009, applications continued to decline. Overall application activity fell to the lowest level since 2018, with both purchase and refinance applications posting declines. Refinance applications were 70 percent below the same week a year ago, when the 30-year fixed rate was in the 3-percent range,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting. “The drop in purchase applications was evident across all loan types. Prospective homebuyers have pulled back this spring, as they continue to face limited options of homes for sale along with higher costs from increasing mortgage rates and prices. The recent decrease in purchase applications is an indication of potential weakness in home sales in the coming months.”

Added Kan, “In a period of high home-price growth and rapidly increasing mortgage rates, borrowers continued to mitigate higher monthly payments by applying for ARM loans. The ARM share of applications last week was over 9 percent by loan count and 17 percent based on dollar volume. At 9 percent, the ARM share was double what it was three months ago, which also coincides with the 1.5 percentage point increase in the 30-year fixed rate.”

The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 35.0 percent of total applications from 35.7 percent the previous week. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity increased to 9.3 percent of total applications.

The FHA share of total applications increased to 10.6 percent from 9.9 percent the week prior. The VA share of total applications increased to 10.2 percent from 10.1 percent the week prior. The USDA share of total applications remained unchanged at 0.5 percent from the week prior.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($647,200 or less) increased to 5.37 percent from 5.20 percent, with points increasing to 0.67 from 0.66 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent loan-to-value ratio (LTV) loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $647,200) increased to 4.89 percent from 4.76 percent, with points increasing to 0.47 from 0.46 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA increased to 5.29 percent from 5.11 percent, with points decreasing to 0.88 from 0.90 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans.  The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages increased to 4.68 percent from 4.44 percent, with points increasing to 0.80 from 0.77 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week.

The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs increased to 4.28 percent from 4.09 percent, with points increasing to 0.74 from 0.56 (including the origination fee) for 80 percent LTV loans. The effective rate increased from last week. 

For more information, please contact Adam DeSanctis at 202-557-2727

MBA Presents Burton C. Wood Award to Owen Lee of Success Mortgage Partners

WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 26, 2022) - 

The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) has presented its annual Burton C. Wood Legislative Service Award to Owen Lee, CEO, Success Mortgage Partners (SMP). The award is given annually to an MBA member employee in recognition of their sustained superior service to the association and the real estate finance industry. Lee was presented the award at MBA's 2022 National Advocacy Conference (NAC).

“It is my honor to recognize Owen Lee, one of MBA’s biggest supporters and a tireless advocate for the real estate finance industry, as the 2022 recipient of the Burton C. Wood Legislative Service Award,” said Kristy W. Fercho, 2022 MBA Chair, Executive Vice President and Head of Home Lending at Wells Fargo. “Owen’s leadership over the years – and especially as a valued member of MBA’s Tax Task Force – has been instrumental in helping to advance MBA’s top legislative priorities.”  

Lee’s work on MBA’s Tax Task Force helped frame MBA’s priorities on recent legislative tax proposals and identified issues that could have been detrimental to the industry, business operations, and consumers. Additionally, his relationships with national, state, and local elected officials helps to ensure the industry’s priorities and concerns are heard.  

Lee is an avid Mortgage Action Alliance (MAA) member and a diamond-level MORPAC donor. This past year he executed a highly successful MORPAC company campaign (his firm’s first), leading an “Advocacy Townhall” with his employees to explain the importance of their engagement. Through his involvement as a member of MBA’s Board of Directors and the IMB Executive Council, Lee has repeatedly encouraged his peers to get involved with MBA’s advocacy programs. 

The award is named after MBA’s late Legislative Counsel Burton C. Wood, who devoted more than 30 years of service to MBA's advocacy efforts. Wood was the first recipient of the award in 1990, and his lobbying skills gained the respect and attention of both Republicans and Democrats alike. He passed away in 2010.

For more information, please contact Falen Taylor at 202-557-2771

MISMO Seeks Public Comment on MEG 27 Which Assesses Compatibility Across MISMO Reference Model Versions

WASHINGTON, D.C. (April 22, 2022) - 

MISMO®, the real estate finance industry's standards organization, announced today that it is seeking public comment on MISMO Engineering Guideline (MEG) 27 which provides guidance to help determine if a new version of the MISMO Reference Model is compatible with a previously-implemented solution. The 60-day public comment period for these guidelines runs through June 22, 2022.

MISMO MEGs are created to ensure that MISMO work products adhere to all applicable technology standards, are produced in a consistent fashion, and meet the needs of the mortgage industry. 

When a new version of the MISMO Reference Model is released, organizations need to be able to determine if adopting it could impact solutions designed for a prior version. MEG 27 provides a quick way to begin to assess the potential impact on an organization and offers necessary guidance to address any incompatibility challenges that may exist in implementing the latest version.

This public comment period allows those who participated on the proposal at least 60 days' notice prior to final release to review and disclose any applicable Patent Rights (as defined by MISMO's 2018 Intellectual Property Rights Policy).   

MISMO requests that any non-participant organization that may have any patent or patent applications, or other intellectual property rights that might be infringed upon by an organization that uses or is compliant with these proposed MISMO products, to disclose them at this time in writing. All comments and disclosures should be directed to

MISMO’s work to solve key business challenges is made possible due to lender support of the MISMO Innovation Investment Fee. For information on MISMO and how to join go here.  

For more information, please contact Tara Dunion at 202-557-2849

Upcoming Educational Webinars

Click here to view the calendar to register for upcoming webinars

Other News...

The New American Homebuyer

Even with the massive gains of the last year, mortgage industry experts say that any plateau for the residential real estate market is nowhere in sight.

Due to a persistent short supply of homes, low interest rates, and readily available credit, single-family homes are commanding multiple offers replete with various sweeteners, such as inspection waivers, offers to cover any appraisal shortfall, etc.

However, homeowners who get too greedy and list their homes at too high a price can still run up against issues of appraisals coming in too low and buyers recognizing the house is overpriced to start with. That’s according to Brian Koss, EVP, Mortgage Network.

Housing affordability declined in May (the latest figures available as of this writing) compared to a year ago, according to National Association of Realtors (NAR) Housing Affordability Index. Median family incomes rose modestly by 1.2%, while the monthly mortgage payment increased 20%. The effective 30-year fixed mortgage rate was 3.01% this May compared to 3.29% one year ago, but the median existing home sales price rose 24.4% year over year.

Compared to the prior month, affordability also worsened as the monthly mortgage payment rose by 1.7% while the median family income declined by 1%.

With all these factors in play, what does the face of the modern American homebuyer look like in 2021? MReport spoke to the experts for insights into the qualities, priorities, and needs of those on the road to the American Dream.

The State of the Market

The adage about the critical importance of location still applies to this current market, said Yvette Clermont, Branch Manager, Inlanta Mortgage. Where homes are available, buyers want to be in good school districts, near shopping, and so forth.

“It’s a little bit of getting whatever you can get your hands on right now,” Clermont said.


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