Closing Timelines Get Even Shorter

The average time to close on all home loan types dropped to 43 days in March—the quickest pace since February 2015, according to Ellie Mae’s Origination Insight Report. A year ago, the average closing time was 46 days. Broken out, loans to purchase a home took 43 days to close, and refinance loans took 43 days in March, down from 45 and 47 days, respectively, in February.

The share of purchase loans last month rose to 63 percent of total originations, up from 57 percent in February, according to Ellie Mae’s report. That marks their highest share since July 2016. “The purchase market continued to heat up in March,” says Ellie Mae president and CEO Jonathan Corr. He also attributed the drop in closing times to Ellie Mae lenders who are automating more mortgage processes “to improve efficiency, quality, and compliance.”

More borrowers are opting for adjustable-rate mortgages as well, according to Ellie Mae’s report. ARMs increased from 5.3 percent to 5.6 percent in March, which is the highest percentage in three years.

Source: “Lenders Speed Up Loan Processing: Ellie Mae,” Mortgage News Daily (April 21, 2017)