These Were the Hottest Reverse Mortgage Markets in April

Reverse mortgage industry volume is roughly 8% lower compared to its year-ago levels, however, several markets are already seeing substantial growth during the first four months of the year, recent data reveals.

Year-to-date, Home Equity Conversion Mortgage endorsements total 17,247 loans through April, a decrease of 8.4% compared to the same period in 2015, according to the most recent industry data tracked by Reverse Market Insight (RMI).

On a monthly basis, industry endorsement volume fell 6.4% in April to 4,243 loans—a decrease influenced by declines among six of the top-10 regions tracked by RMI.

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Among the regions seeing the largest gains during the month were the Rocky Mountain (30.5%), Great Plains (27%), Southwest (8.9%) and New England (0.6%) areas.

The largest regions in terms of volume, the Pacific/Hawaii and Southeast/Caribbean, continued to hold down the top spots for endorsement counts, however, they saw volume fall 13.5% and 8.6% in April, respectively.

Despite its monthly decline, volume in the Pacific/Hawaii region is up approximately 7.2% year-to-date in 2016 compared to 2015—and it wasn’t the region’s largest metros that drove its growth for the month.

Reno, Nev., took its nickname “The Biggest Little City in the World” to a whole new meaning. Through the first four months of 2016, the city reported 108 loans, an increase of 52.1% over last year’s comparable four-month period.

Meanwhile, the Pacific/Hawaii region also received a boost from Sacramento, Calif., and Fresno, Calif., which each saw their year-to-date volume increase 40.1% and 24.7% over the year.

April’s growth story largely remained out west, predominantly in the Rocky Mountain and Northwest/Alaska regions.

Compared to last year, volume in the Rocky Mountain metros grew 24.9% year-to-date in 2016. Denver, the region’s largest metro by volume, remained the top market with 634 loans through this year April, an increase of 46.4% compared to 433 loans in 2015.

Helena, Mont., and Fargo, N.D. also put up good showings, with each reporting year-over-year growth of 20.8% and 57.1%, respectively.

The Northwest/Alaska territory continued to be bolstered by its two largest metro producers, Seattle and Portland, Ore. Respectively, each metro reported 430 and 332 loans, reflecting year-over-year increases of 31.5% and 25.8% year-to-date through April.

See where other markets stack up this year through April.

Written by Jason Oliva

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