The big mortgage news for this last week, was that rates hit a 18 month low last Wednesday (10/15), and then promptly begin to rise due to profit taking in the bond market. But, all of this really boils down to rate are still ridiculously low.

The other big news from last Friday, is the announcement of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac with their federal regulators, have drawn up rules aimed at loosening constricted lending standards… and reducing the minimum down payment from 5% down to 3% (Los Angeles Times, 10/17/14).

Even an article in TIME Magazine, October 20, 2014, notes that a whole new category of nontraditional lenders is springing up to take traditional banking’s place. They are focusing not just on borrowers’ salary and tax returns…but also on their field of work, what kind of degree program they are in or what their potential income trajectory might be. Does this sound familiar from the early 2000”s!!! Lending is trending towards easing-up. But, for the present, we still need to see those tax returns and pay check stubs!!

And if that isn’t exciting enough, the Oregonian on 10/15/14, detailed that our typical Fall slow-down is not as great as in years of past. The Oregonian reported that although September was slower than August, we still experienced a 10.2% increase over last year. The strongest September since 2006. It is still a seller’s market with only 3.1 months of inventory (anything less than six months is considered a seller’s market). It was noted in the article, that Fall tends to be a good time for investors and first-time homebuyers to acquire home, since they are not attached to the school schedule. So, keep those type of clients in mind as you hold your “open homes” on Tuesdays and Sundays.