Are kids preventing moms from buying homes?

Yesterday Up NEXT mentioned that women are the majority gender in the workforce now. And it’s no wonder that more women need to have jobs; it could be to cover the burdensome and growing cost of childcare. 

A new Insights report from Freddie Mac states that there’s a big reason households aren’t getting a mortgage. “Child care, in particular, is eating into their budget. It’s far more than the cost of repaying their student loans, and approaching the cost of their rent,” the report states. Childcare costs are approaching the cost of rent. Let that sink in.

“We find that child care expenditures for all types of care is about half the national median mortgage payment and nearly 80% of the national median rent,” the report states. 

And, like most socioeconomic issues in this country, Freddie Mac finds that the further back you are in the financial food chain, the worse it gets.

The report continues, “Existing research shows that while child care continues to put financial distress on many families, lower-income families bear the greatest burden: For a family making less than $1,500 per month who have children under the age of fifteen, almost 40% of its income goes toward this expense.”

The Freddie Mac report concludes with no sign of help for moms: “It remains true that access to quality affordable child care is and will remain an impediment to women’s ability to work, making it harder for families to cover housing costs or save for a down payment to buy a house.”

JPM made more money than any US bank in the history of forever

At #NEXTDC19 in Washington DC, Keosha Burns, VP of Public Relations at JP Morgan Chase said the bank “serves about half of the nation.” And judging by JPM’s recent earnings bonanza, she may have modestly understated just how much business the bank is banking.

That’s because Chase just posted the best year for any U.S. bank in history. $36.4 billion. That’s what a record year for a bank looks like. For a quick comparison, at the start of 2019, when Amazon released its 10-K and Annual Report, it had a market capitalization of $755.7 billion.

Sadly, despite the high, JPM is not likely double down on its mortgage efforts. This is from the writeup above: “Chief Financial Officer Jennifer Piepszak said the record results don’t necessarily mean the bank has reached a peak. Growth can continue thanks to initiatives including a national branch expansion, plans to boost market share in the fast-growing credit-card business, a push into China and the company’s strategy of hiring investment bankers in geographies and sectors where the bank is under-penetrated.”

Still, hats off to JPM for hitting it out of the park!

Mortgage applications jump a whopping 30%

Last week, mortgage applications increased 30.2 percent from one week earlier, according to data from the MBA. 

According to their latest release, “On an unadjusted basis, the Index increased 67 percent compared with the previous week. The Refinance Index increased 43 percent from the previous week and was 109 percent higher than the same week one year ago.” 

“Homebuyers were active the first week of the year. Purchase activity was 8 percent higher than a year ago, and the purchase index increased to its highest level since October 2009. Low rates and the solid job market continue to encourage prospective buyers to enter the market,” said Joel Kan, Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting. Higher loan limits probably aren’t hurting the market, either, we suspect.

Kan added that, while the numbers are great, they’re still not at the level of last year’s refi boom.

“Refinances increased for both conventional and government loans, as lower rates provided a larger incentive for borrowers to act. It remains to be seen if this strong refinancing pace is sustainable, but even with the robust activity the last two weeks, the level is still below what occurred last fall,” he said.

NEXT, connecting women in the mortgage industry to grow and advance their leadership and careers.

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