Work with independent mortgage brokers

In a study conducted by United Wholesale Mortgage, 90% of real estate agents who worked with an independent mortgage broker would recommend one to their buyers in the future.

Gathering of Eagles

The Gathering of Eagles conference is the Trusted Source, offering brokers, managers and leaders valuable insider industry information on how to run a profitable business.

RealTrending: eXp’s Glenn Sanford

Glenn Sanford, CEO of eXp World holdings, addresses his critics about his agent referral program, where he is taking the company next and growth limiters for the brokerage.


The RealTrends monthly newsletter is known as the trusted industry source for information on trends, strategies, analysis, people and news shaping the real estate industry of tomorrow.

Lengthy Housing Recovery Helps Reduce Household Mortgage Debt to 30 Year Lows

Lengthy Housing Recovery Helps Reduce Household Mortgage Debt to 30 Year Lows

Mortgage debt as a share of total household debt dwindles to levels not seen since 1988.

By Ralph Mclaughlin housing affordability, Mortgage Finance

Household mortgage debt in the United States fell to 64.6 percent of total household debt in the third quarter of 2018, according to the latest Federal Reserve Financial Accounts data release. Mortgage debt now makes up the lowest share of household debt since the first quarter of 1988. As a share of disposable household income, mortgage debt now makes up 65.9 percent, which is the lowest since the second quarter of 2001.

Household mortgage debt grew just 0.1 percent year-over-year on an inflation and homeownership-adjusted basis, increasing to a total mortgage debt of $10.3 trillion and $131,463 per owner-occupied household. The latter is the second lowest since the first quarter of 2004, with last quarter being the lowest.  What’s more, the value of homeowners’ real estate grew by an inflation-adjusted 3.6 percent over the past year, helping homeowner’s real estate assets as a share of their total assets hold steady at 20.5 percent.

While the cycle is long in the tooth, a long economic expansion and housing market recovery has helped households who have been under-water rise above the red. Per the CoreLogic Home Equity Report, released this morning, the share of mortgaged homeowners who are in negative equity fell to a cycle low of 4.1 percent in the third quarter of 2018, which is down from a cycle high of 25.9 percent in the first quarter of 2010 and down from 5 percent last year.

Last, recent geographic variation in home price growth has led some markets to see substantial decreases in the number of underwater homeowners. Metros in states that saw significant housing market collapse in home equity have seen some of the largest decreases in negative equity. Leading the charge was Las Vegas, which has seen a drop in the share of households with negative equity to 5.1 percent in the third quarter of 2018 compared to 10.3 percent just a year ago. Lakeland, Orlando, and Ocala, Florida, and Detroit, Michigan round out the top five, with decreases of 3.9, 3.3, 3, and 2.7 percentage points, respectively, over the past year.

What does all this mean in the face of a softening housing market? First, it’s a sign that households would be in much better shape should a recession unfold. Low homeowner equity at the cusp of the Great Recession put many households at risk of foreclosure, so increases in equity put them in a better position to weather the impact of an economic downturn. Second, holders of mortgage notes can rest easy knowing that their portfolio is likely in much better shape than it might have been at the start of the previous recession. Last, housing markets that were hit hard during the Great Recession are seeing significant increases in homeowner equity, which will help these areas minimize concentrated risk of foreclosures

Dr. Ralph B. McLaughlin is deputy chief economist and executive of research and insights for CoreLogic.

Most Popular Articles

RealTrending: Tom Ferry reveals top ways for brokers to increase per-agent productivity

Tom Ferry, founder of Tom Ferry International, takes his years of coaching brokers and boils it down to the top things brokers need to do today to increase per-agent productivity, why he thinks some brokerages have rocket-ship growth and how to manage teams.

May 10, 2021 By

Latest Articles

Equity-rich homes outnumber underwater homes 7-to-1

Homeowners continued to see substantial home value and equity growth in the first quarter of 2021 as the real estate market remains pandemic-resistant, with equity-rich homes outnumbering “seriously underwater” ones by seven to one, according to a new report.

May 14, 2021 By