Applications for New Home Purchase Mortgages Down 8% in May: MBA

Applications for mortgages to purchase new homes decreased 8% in May compared to April, according to Mortgage Bankers Association data released Friday.

The average loan amount for new home purchase mortgages also decreased in May, to $296,427, from $299,094 in April, according to the MBA's Builder Application Survey, which tracks loan volume from homebuilders' mortgage subsidiaries.

On a seasonally-adjusted basis, new single-family home sales were at a pace of 374,000 units in May, down 10.7% from April's seasonally-adjusted pace of 419,000 units. Unadjusted for seasonality, the MBA estimates there were 36,000 new home sales in May, down 14.3% from 42,000 in April. The MBA derives the sales estimates from the builder survey and other market indicators.

After a disappointing first quarter, home sales are primed for pick up, due to lower mortgage rates and slowing price appreciation, which will be key to origination volume as refinance activity wanes.

Conventional loans represented 69.3% of all loan applications. FHA loans composed 15.5%, RHS/USDA loans 1.7% and VA loans 13.6%.

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