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Origination volume plummets in Q1

2017 did not start well for the mortgage industry.

Overall origination counts fell 30 percent over the quarter and were down 21 percent from a year ago, according to Attom Data Solutions. The lower numbers in the first quarter were driven by a steep decline in refinancing activity.

In the tracked markets representing about 80 percent of the overall market, originations totaled just over 1.4 million in the first quarter, the company reported.

Origination volume totaled $347.9 billion, the lowest amount since the first quarter of 2014.

 “Rising mortgage rates made qualifying for a home purchase more difficult and refinancing an existing home loan less attractive in the first quarter,” said Daren Blomquist, Attom’s senior vice president.

“Refinance originations in particular fell off a cliff in the first quarter to the lowest level in more than 10 years after posting double-digit percentage increases in the third and fourth quarters of 2016, indicating that some refinance demand was pulled forward late last year in anticipation of rising interest rates."


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