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Tuesday, December 7, 2010
Mortgage Activity Surges in Florida and New York, Declines in SW
According to new consumer activity collected by MortgageLoan.com between October 15 and November 15, 2010, the New York City metro area and cities in Florida saw overall increases in mortgage and refinance requests. Requests in Boston, Texas, and the Southwest were mixed.
While the New York City Metro area showed a 17% increase in overall request volume, Florida was the real winner with a 71% increase in refinance requests in Miami and Ft. Lauderdale and a 47% increase in Orlando. "The dramatic increase in refinance activity in Florida markets suggests that home values may be stabilizing in many areas," says David Coster, residential lending expert at MortgageLoan.com. "Recent home price surveys, which do not look at secondary markets, have shown further value drops. Yet our site activity provides anecdotal evidence that may indicate more positive attitudes among Florida homeowners relative to their refinancing prospects." The Boston metro area market showed a 32% increase in mortgage purchase activity, yet a 23% drop in refinance activity. "It is suggestive of a situation in which first time homebuyers, in-bound relocated employees, or investors are taking advantage of lowered home values," says Coster. "At the same time, existing homeowners are still struggling with homes that cannot be refinanced due to value, credit, or employment issues." The Houston, Texas area saw a 17% decrease in overall requests. Other Texas and Southwestern markets also saw declines in refinance activity, including a 38% decrease in Phoenix, Arizona, a 32% decrease in Albuquerque, New Mexico, a 26% decrease in San Antonio Texas, and a 24% decrease in Fort Worth, Texas. The overall site activity at MortgageLoan.com indicates a housing market that varies from market to market and from month to month. Still, signs of marginal improvement appear to be creeping into the data.