While everyone from the chairman of the Federal Reserve to millions of home sellers and buyers pleads for a little relief from tight lending standards, the nation’s leading banks are moving in exactly the opposite way.
In the latest survey of senior loan officers by the Fed, during the first quarter requirements to get a mortgage became tougher for subprime loans in 43.9 percent of banks and for prime loans in 14.3 percent. The report contributes to an upswing in tighter standards illustrated by the chart below from the Cleveland Federal Reserve.
Meanwhile, as loan volume switches over from refi to purchase loans, evidence that loans are getting easier to obtain may become harder to come by since FICO scores as tracked by Ellie Mae are notably higher for refis than purchase loans. It its most recent report, Ellie Mae reported in March media FICOs for conventional refi loans were 733 and for conventional purchase loans were 755.