Tag Archives: Mortgage

Risk & Compliance FICO Research: Broader Mix of Consumers Obtaining New Mortgages

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Aug152018

For many people, owning a home is still a significant milestone in their financial and credit journey. We recently studied the impact of millennials’ student loan debt on their willingness and ability to obtain new mortgage loans. As the housing market continues to remain competitive, we looked at key trends in FICO® Score distributions and default rates for those who have proven they would like to and are able to obtain mortgage loans. The first clear trend observed around newly originated mortgages is that as we get further away from the Great Recession, underwriting criteria seems to have eased and a broader section of consumers are obtaining mortgages as a result. Figure 1 contains a FICO® Score distribution for mortgages opened in different periods between 2009 to 2017. We see that the percent of new mortgage account openings with FICO® Scores less than 750 has climbed significantly in recent years,... [Read More]

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Risk & Compliance FICO Research: Does Student Loan Debt Impact Millennial Homeownership?

Student Loans and Homeownership
Aug012018

In April, we highlighted some of the positive behaviors that people with student loans are exhibiting to help improve their FICO® Scores.  Following National Homeownership Month, we examined whether student loan debt appears to impact decisions about when to begin another important step in their financial and credit journey: purchasing a home. Using a nationally representative sample of FICO scorable consumers as of October 2017, we compared homeownership rates (using presence of an open mortgage loan as a proxy) across Millennial consumers age 25 to 34. Within this population, we distinguished rates of homeownership between those with no student loans on their credit file, those with closed student loans, and those consumers with one or more student loans actively in repayment. Key Findings: Consumers with closed student loans are more likely to begin their homeownership journey We found that the 11% of consumers with closed student loans are almost two-thirds... [Read More]

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Risk & Compliance Truth Squad: Can Scoring Rental Data Vastly Improve Credit Access?

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May102017

There has been much discussion and several studies over the years regarding the potential value of leveraging rental data in assessing consumer credit risk. Which raises the question: Should rental data be widely reported to the three primary consumer credit agencies (CRAs)? If rental data was reported, this might mean some consumers without loans or credit cards would get a FICO® Score, and gain access to more affordable credit. But how many? And how many of these consumers would be considered creditworthy by prospective lenders? In 2015, FICO introduced FICO® Score 9, which scores rental data. This coincided with the first evidence of sufficient positive and negative rental data at the CRAs, a necessary condition for adding this data into the FICO Score algorithm. Great news, right? Well let’s take a deeper look at some of the facts around rental data in the credit report. Not Enough Rental Data in... [Read More]

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Risk & Compliance Adapting Mortgage Loan Price Optimization to Building Societies

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Apr032017

One of the hottest analytic technologies in mortgage lending is price optimization. This is the application of advanced analytics to pricing strategies, in order to determine the ideal price for every customer that maximizes profitability, given factors such as take-up, affordability, etc. That’s great for banks, but what about building societies and credit unions? If profit isn’t your primary goal — if you exist to serve your members — does price optimization have a place? The answer is definitely yes. Using pricing optimization, building societies and credit unions can develop strategic mortgage offers that target specific objectives, such as customer retention, without hurting the bottom line and ensuring that targets around Treating the Customer Fairly are met. This kind of optimization can really pay off – making an appropriate offer, to the right customer at the right time, typically results in 10-15% higher retention of existing customers. When building societies... [Read More]

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Risk & Compliance FICO Research: Are Millennials Really Abandoning Credit?

Feb082017

Nothing fascinates us more in the world of demographics than what the Millennial generation think, do and how they act.  One thing for sure is that, as they vie with the Baby Boomers to be the largest demographic group here in the USA, what they do is important. And we don’t need to be statisticians to know that the Baby Boomer generation isn’t going to be getting any bigger. The question for many in financial service boils down to this: Are Millennials really abandoning us? The topic came to mind for me recently as I was asked to be part of a panel discussion on credit and the economy at an ABS East conference. Since much of what gets said about Millennials seems to be more opinion than fact, I decided to look at a few stats and see if we could cast any light on what might be happening.... [Read More]

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Risk & Compliance Truth Squad: Will Weaker Scoring Criteria Create a Mortgage Surge?

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Jan102017

Participants and Influencers throughout the mortgage ecosystem have been told by the three main US credit bureaus through their jointly owned and controlled credit scoring firm, VantageScore, that the VantageScore can enable millions more consumers to gain access to a mortgage. It’s an appealing story — but is it true? Claim: Loosening credit scoring criteria will bring lenders an additional 3.4 million potential borrowers, over 2.6 million of whom will qualify for mortgage credit. Truth: Very few new people will both qualify for mortgages and want mortgages. The “innovation” VantageScore claims can score more people is simply the weakening of credit score criteria. The minimum criteria needed to produce the FICO Score aren’t arbitrary — they are the result of decades of research into risk assessment. As a reminder, reliable credit scores can only be calculated from credit files with at least one open credit account for at least six... [Read More]

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Risk & Compliance Truth Squad: Will Looser Scoring Standards Help Millions More Americans Get Mortgages?

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Nov152016

Access to credit and the path to homeownership are important parts of the American way of life. That’s why it’s critical to understand what can be done to improve financial inclusion — and what won’t work. For months now, the three main US consumer reporting agencies – through their VantageScore business – have been claiming that millions of credit-starved Americans can get access to mortgages through the “innovation” of simply eliminating long-standing and essential minimum credit scoring criteria. This isn’t innovation, and it won’t help borrowers.  It’s time to set the record straight. Claim: By loosening the minimum scoring criteria, VantageScore can give millions of currently unscoreable Americans a credit score, making them mortgage-ready. Truth: Scoring sparse and old data may give more Americans a score, but it won’t help those Americans who are actually seeking homeownership credit.  Even worse, it locks millions of Americans into unfairly low scores. To... [Read More]

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Risk & Compliance FICO Research: Student Loan Explosion Hurts Other Borrowing

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Oct202016

The student loan crisis in the US is getting much worse — student loan debt is over $1.3 trillion and is increasing by more than $2,700 per second. Lenders cannot ignore the impact of that debt on individual borrowing. Our latest research shows that: The number of US consumers aged 25-34 with student loan debt of at least $50,000 doubled from 2005 to 2015. During that same time, the average student loan debt across all age 25-34 consumers also doubled — by comparison, average credit card debt and mortgage debt for this population actually fell. While the number of consumers age 25-34 with student loans grew from 2005 to 2015 (from 27% of this population to 40%), there are fewer 25-34 year olds with mortgages or credit cards than 10 years ago.   In fact, our data shows that people with active student loans are far less likely to have... [Read More]

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Risk & Compliance Research Shows Mortgage Delinquencies Rise for Older Consumers

Sep272016

FICO research consistently shows that older consumers have higher FICO® Scores than their younger counterparts. But a recent report by the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) provides evidence that people become less reliable at making their mortgage payments as they age. Can both of these assertions be right? To get to the bottom of this, FICO conducted fresh research on credit behavior trends by age. Our study revealed not only that mortgage delinquency rates rise for US consumers beyond a certain age, but that these delinquency increases were observable across other loan types. Is this cause for concern? And was the MBA correct in their conclusion that declining memory and other cognitive skills are the main contributing factor? In this post, I’ll share our research findings and draw a few conclusions based on what we see in the data. Delinquency Trends by Age For this research, we examined payment behavior using... [Read More]

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