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Financial Health of Prospective Borrowers Deteriorates

Financial pressure cited

Oct. 30, 2013

By Mortgage Daily staff

The financial health of prospective mortgage borrowers grew weaker on a quarterly basis thanks to increased financial pressure.

During the third quarter, the average loan-to-value ratio for potential borrowers on residential property loans was 89.79 percent.

The average LTV ratio for the group increased from the previous three-month period, when it came in at 88.4 percent.

LendingTree, which reported the statistics in its Borrower Health Report, attributed the deterioration to rising home prices that placed more financial pressure on prospective borrowers.

Montana's average LTV of 91.16 percent for potential borrowers was the highest of any state. Arkansas followed at 91.01 percent, then 90.83 percent in Arizona, 90.59 percent in Louisiana and 90.53 percent in Kansas.

New Mexico's average LTV of 85.31 percent was the lowest of any state.

The report indicated that average U.S. credit scores for prospective borrowers fell to 636 from the second quarter's 640.

On a national basis, the Borrower Health Score, itself, declined to 79.94 in the third quarter from the prior period's 81.51.

Still, the score was up from 72.66 the third-quarter 2012.

"This year-over-year improvement implies that mortgage-seekers are in relatively good health and that there is broader trend of improving borrower qualification levels," LendingTree said.

Hawaii, Washington, D.C., New Jersey and California had the highest scores -- all above 90.

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