Closing times were way down in February, falling from 51 days in January to 46 days for all loans last month, according to the latest Ellie Mae Origination Insight Report.
Broken out, home purchase loans took an average of 45 days to close in February, down from 48 days in January. Refinanced loans took an average of 47 days to close in February, down from 53 days.
Conventional loans commanded 63 percent of the market share, compared to 66 percent in January, according to Ellie Mae’s report. The FHA increased its market share by 2 percentage points to 23 percent, and VA loans rose by 1 percentage point to 10 percent.
FICO scores on closed loans decreased moderately in February, dropping from 722 in January to 720 in February. Ellie Mae’s report shows that average FICO scores are 11 points lower than the highs reached a year ago in August and September. Still, FICO scores are one point higher than the beginning of 2016.
Seventy percent of all closed purchase loans had scores of 700 or more.
“The purchase market led the way in February, representing 57 percent of total closed loans,” says Jonathan Corr, president and CEO of Ellie Mae. “Along with the growing purchase market, we’re seeing the time to close all loans decrease and FICO scores decline, trends that we will continue to watch in the coming months.”