August provided a welcoming reprieve from months of declining reverse mortgage volumes, with endorsements growing as much as 24% on a monthly, industry-wide basis. With all regions across the U.S. reporting volume growth in August, the month was especially productive for some major metros.
Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) endorsements jumped 24.1% in August with 4,387 total units recorded during the month, according to recent industry data from Reverse Market Insight (RMI). Growth among all 10 regions tracked by RMI powered the monthly gain, with long-time leader the Pacific/Hawaii at the top of the ranks.
Bolstered by its California-based markets, the Pacific/Hawaii region reported 1,210 HECM endorsements for August, an increase of 21.6% from the previous month. At the metro level, Los Angeles added the most units in August with 278 HECMs, while Santa Ana and San Francisco followed with 233 and 212 units reported during the month, respectively.
Phoenix also contributed to the region’s growth, adding 139 units, whereas Sacramento produced 119 units and San Diego chipped-in with 85. Collectively, volume in the Pacific/Hawaii region is 7.2% lower year-to-date (YTD) through August 2016 compared to its year-ago level.
Fellow western region, the Rocky Mountain area, continued to see improvements in volume. With 2,148 units through August 2016, volume in the region is up 13.1% compared to last year.
Denver, Rocky Mountain’s largest metro, continues to flourish. The Mile High City had 1,260 units YTD through August, representing an increase of 32.9% year-over-year. And on a monthly basis, the city added 222 HECM endorsements in August. The next largest Rocky Mountain metro for volume, Salt Lake City, added 93 units for the month, bringing its total to 600 units through August 2016.
The only other region to join Rocky Mountain in reporting growth on a YTD basis through the first eight months of the year is the Northwest/Alaska, a region that has been continuously supported by gains among its largest metros.
Seattle and Portland, Ore., lead the way with 814 and 668 YTD units in 2016, representing increases of 4.9% and 15.4%, respectively. For the single month, Seattle added 106 HECMs, while Portland added 97 loans in August. The region also received some support from Boise, Ida., whose 37 loans during the month brings its YTD 2016 total to 247 units, an increase of 1.6% compared to its year-ago level.
Despite all other regions, apart from the Northwest/Alaska and Rocky Mountain, reporting lower volume through August compared to last year, there were some markets worth mentioning that added triple-digit endorsements during the month.
Several of those metros were located in the Southeast/Caribbean, where Miami, Greensboro, N.C., and Tampa, Fla. grew their August volume by 177, 107 and 109 units, respectively.
Other notable mentions include New York, which added 139 units during the month, and Richmond, Va., whose single-month addition of 100 loans represents roughly 17% of its entire 2016 volume through August (582).
See how other metros are performing in 2016.
Written by Jason Oliva