VA mortgage lending increases almost 9% as refinancing rebounds
The dollar volume of mortgages guaranteed by the Department of Veterans Affairs rose nearly 9% in the past fiscal year as interest-rate reduction refinancing loans surged nearly 75%.
VA mortgages totaled $175.6 billion in the 12 months leading up to Sept. 30, 2019. While this marks an increase from the almost $161.3 billion in VA home loans originated during the previous federal fiscal year, it’s down from the five-year high of nearly $188.7 billion seen two years ago.
IRRRLs represented 17% of the VA loan volume in the past fiscal year, purchases made up nearly 61% of VA mortgages and cash-out loans constituted more than 22% in this niche.
The IRRRL share has been lower than the cash-out share since FY 2018. Mortgage rates were relatively higher that year. Also in FY 2018, Ginnie Mae took some steps to restrict what it alleged were unusually fast VA loan prepayments. Prior to FY 2018, the IRRRL share was higher than the cash-out share.
In FY 2019, IRRRLs have rebounded somewhat because mortgage rates have been relatively lower, and government officials have taken some steps to ease restrictions on VA refinancing.
Veterans United Home Loans remained the top producer of VA loans based on loan volume during the past fiscal year and Navy Federal remained at No. 4, but other lenders that previously were in the top five saw their positions in the rankings change.
Quicken Loans moved up one spot, becoming No. 2, while USAA moved down a rung in the rankings to No. 3. In addition, United Shore Financial Services jumped to No. 5 from No. 10, displacing loanDepot, which moved down one notch in the rankings.