Local mortgage loan applications down by almost half


TRI-CITIES, TN – Mortgage loans declined by almost one-half during the last three months of 2022.

The loan origination report came during the same week that the Atlanta Federal Reserve Bank’s Homeownership Affordability monitor rated all Tri-Cities counties as housing burdened. That means owners were paying over 30% of their income on housing. The recommended income to housing ratio is 25% to 30%.

According to ATTOM Data Solutions, there were 2,525 new loan applications in the seven-county region during the fourth quarter. This time last year there were 3,633. It’s noteworthy that the decrease puts the home loan market at the same level it was the year before the pandemic. It’s another in the building list of data points that show the market is resetting to its pre-pandemic level. The metric that hasn’t moved very much is prices, which are typically the last thing to adjust to a market correction trough.

It’s no surprise that the biggest new loan decline came in the three-county Johnson metro area. It has the most expensive housing submarkets and its population center in Washington Co. is experiencing the fastest population growth. New loan applications declined to 1,031 in Q4 from 1,872 last year for a 44.9% decline.

The four-county Kingsport-Bristol metro area had 1,494 new applications down from 2,067 this time last year.

Refinancing declined for the seventh straight quarter from its Q1 2021 peak. Loan applications have outnumbered refi applications in two of the last 14 quarters.

There were 373 refi applications in the Johnson City metro area during Q4, down from 971 last year. Refi applications in Kingsport-Bristol dropped to 638 from 1,272.

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Categories: REAL ESTATE