HMBS January 2023 Part II: Issuer 42 to the Rescue (Part II)

HMBS payoffs fell again in January, as the refinancing retreat continues. January payoffs totaled about $756 million, the lowest payoff amount in nearly 6 years and the lowest payoff rate in 7 years. Outstanding HMBS rose to a record $59.9 billion due to the drop in payoffs.

Higher interest rates finally caught up with the HMBS market in 2022, driving down Principal Limit Factors (initial loan-to-value ratios or “PLFs”) sharply. Big trouble came in the fourth quarter. In October, the trend of declining home prices became more clear and widespread. In November, Reverse Mortgage Funding, holder of the largest HMBS servicing portfolio, declared bankruptcy. In December, AAG, the top HECM originator, agreed to sell its assets to Finance of America Reverse, taking another major HMBS issuer out of the picture.

Also in December, Ginnie Mae took over RMF’s HMBS portfolio. In Ginnie Mae’s recent data release, “Ginnie Mae – Reverse Mortgage Funding 42” is now shown as the issuer of record for the 4,053 former RMF pools. About $290 million of Issuer 42’s portfolio paid off in January. “Issuer 42” HMBS accounts for just under $21 billion, or about 35% of all outstanding HMBS.

The 10-year treasury fell sharply in recent weeks and the lending limit/MCA was raised to $1,089,300 in 2023; it remains to be seen if this will slow the steady decline in industry volume.

When a HECM loan balance reaches 98% of its MCA, the HMBS issuer is required to buy the loans out of the HMBS pool, and then may assign the loan to HUD if the loan is not in default. This is effectively a prepayment event for the HMBS investor, even though the underlying HECM loan remains outstanding. According to our friends at Recursion, over 60% of HMBS payoffs last month were due to Mandatory Purchase, the highest percentage in 3 ½ years. Last month’s 98% MCA Mandatory Purchases totaled $440 million, the highest dollar total in nearly 3 years.

Including the Mandatory Purchases, HMBS paid off at a 14.2% annual rate in January, the slowest one-month rate since February 2016. Exclusive of Mandatory Purchases, the rate of HMBS payoffs is falling rapidly. HMBS payoffs resulting from underlying HECM loan payoffs, including payoffs due to mortality and refinancing, fell to less than 6%, a seven-year low and less than one-third the rate of a year ago.

(Note: The following was republished with permission from New View Advisors, compiled this data from publicly available Ginnie Mae data as well as private sources.)

Published by

Darryl Hicks

Darryl Hicks is Vice President of Communications for the National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association. In this capacity, Hicks writes for NRMLA's publications, manages the association's web sites and social media accounts, assists committees and the Board of Directors, and manages the Certified Reverse Mortgage Professional designation. Prior to joining NRMLA in 1999, Hicks spent three years in the Washington, D.C. bureau for National Mortgage News.