Patrick Blawat

‘Flat’ mortgage market ahead

Rising rates, lack of inventory to hamper growth in 2019.

November 1, 2018

This year is turning out like most people predicted in the mortgage arena.

Rising interest rates have significantly hampered the mortgage refinance market. The growth of the purchase market can only be as great as the inventory of available homes.

In 2019, we are expecting these trends to continue. Rising interest rates and lack of housing inventory will dictate a flat year for production.

The good news is that credit unions have done a fantastic job of growing their market share. Experian reports that the credit union mortgage market share jumped from 6% in 2015 to 13% in 2017.

To keep this trend going, Credit union leaders need to make sure they’re using all available lending options to assist their members.

This includes using their own balance sheet, secondary market outlets—and let’s not forget government loans (Federal Housing Administration, Veterans Administration, and U.S. Department of Agriculture loans).

In advance of the spring purchase market, create a niche product that you feel comfortable with and make sure your membership and local Realtors know about it.

If you are not doing government loans, you should be. Establish a relationship with someone you can trust to assist you with them now so that you’ll be ready before spring.

All of this addresses the revenue side of the equation. The other half of the P&L is expense.

Look for efficiencies in your department, leverage your partners, and constantly evaluate technology.

Are you embracing the technology trends of the millennials? If not, you could be left behind.

PATRICK BLAWAT is director of sales and loan coordinators for QRL Financial Services.