Mortgage activity in NWA hits 3-year low

by Paul Gatling ([email protected]) 991 views 

A new report from California-based Attom Data Solutions shows that 4,501 mortgages secured by residential property were originated in the third quarter (July-September) of 2022 in Northwest Arkansas. That figure is down 38% from the third quarter of 2022 and the lowest total since 3,667 in the first quarter of 2019.

Attom Data Solutions tracks national housing and foreclosure data. The report includes 210 metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) with a population of at least 200,000 and at least 1,000 total loan originations in the year’s first quarter.

Regional refinance activity is down even sharper. Attom’s analysis showed 1,500 owners refinanced a mortgage in Northwest Arkansas in the third quarter. That’s down 58.8% year-over-year.

Attom’s report includes two other Arkansas metros. There were 5,360 new loans in the Little Rock metro in the third quarter this year, down 34% from the third quarter of 2021. In the Fort Smith metro, there were 1,624 mortgages secured in the third quarter, down 29.7% from the third quarter last year.

According to Attom, there were 1.97 million U.S. mortgages secured by residential property in the third quarter of 2022. That’s down 47% from the third quarter of 2021 — the largest annual drop in 21 years — and down 16% from the third quarter of 2021. That is the sixth quarterly decrease in a row.

Attom Executive Vice President Rick Sharga said there are no surprises in the latest quarterly report.

“The unprecedented jump in mortgage rates has battered both the purchase and refinance markets,” he said. “Prospective homebuyers have been priced out of the market by the combination of 7% mortgage rates and higher home prices. And refinance activity will probably continue to decline, since the majority of homeowners have loans with sub-4% interest rates.”