If you need assistance, please call 916-529-5342

This Is NOT Your Parents’ 3% Down Payment Plan

Wednesday, August 5, 2015   /   by Thomas March

This Is NOT Your Parents’ 3% Down Payment Plan

 photo Down-Payment-KCM_zpsj1ddnvy6.jpg

In their latest Housing Market Insight & Outlook report, Freddie Mac revealed that recent low down payment initiatives have raised concerns that we may be returning to the same lax mortgage qualifications that caused the housing crisis from which we are just now recovering.

The report went on to explain that today’s underwriting guidelines are nothing like those that existed just prior to the housing meltdown.

“Pre-crisis underwriting allowed layered risk, that is, the combination of multiple features that amplified credit risk. Low down payments often were combined with variable-payment loan structures, property-based underwriting, and questionable appraisals. These risk factors, along with the ‘irrational exuberance’ of some borrowers, led to large losses during the crisis.”

What is layered risk?

In the pre-crisis environment, many mortgage loans incorporated several additional features besides low down payments that multiplied the total risk of the loans such as: variable payment options, underwriting based on the property not the borrower, questionable appraisal processes. Borrower expectations were also overly optimistic at that time.

Freddie Mac highlights the difference between then and now by using a table in the report:


 photo 3-Percent-Down_zpsgsmji1q4.jpg

By removing the “layered risk”, we can be confident that low down payment programs will not impact the market the way mortgage underwriting impacted the market a decade ago. And the report explains:

“Previous research has found that reduced down payments can increase the relative probability of homeownership among some groups by over 25 percent.”

Bottom Line

We believe the report’s conclusion says it all:

“As long as the underwriting process bars the return of the layered risks prevalent in the pre-crisis era, lower down payments are not a cause for concern.”

-- Thomas March Home Selling Group --- Proudly with Keller Williams Realty
Thomas March
548 Gibson Drive, Suite 200
Roseville, CA 95678
916-529-5342
DRE# 01427654

metrolist logo.png The real estate listing data marked with this icon comes from the IDX program of the Sacramento Metrolist Multiple Listing Service™ system. Information deemed reliable, but not verified or guaranteed. Users are responsible for checking the accuracy, completeness, currency, and status of all information. All measurements and all calculations of area (i.e., Sq Ft and Acreage) are approximate. Broker has represented to MetroList that Broker has a valid listing signed by seller authorizing placement in the MLS. Above information is provided by Seller and/or other sources and has not been verified by Broker. Some properties that appear for sale on this web site may subsequently have been sold and may no longer be available. Copyright 2020 MetroList Services, Inc.
Terms and Conditions

Powered by metrolist logo.png
This site powered by CINC: www.cincpro.com