The average FICO score on closed mortgages dropped to 720 in February – down from 722 in January and down from 726 in December, according to Ellie Mae’s Origination Insight Report.
The average FICO score for a conventional refinance was 728, down from 732 in January. The average FICO score for a refinance backed by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) was 649, down from 651. The average FICO score for a Veterans Affairs (VA) refinance was 702, down from 707.
FICO scores on purchases were basically flat compared with January. The average FICO score for an FHA purchase loan was 686; the average FICO score for a conventional purchase loan was 752; and the average FICO score for VA purchase was 707.
Meanwhile, the average number of days to close a mortgage loan fell to 46 days for all loan types – down from 51 days in January and down from 50 days in December.
Interestingly, the average FICO score and average number of days to close were the same in February 2016.
Purchases increased to 57% of all loans, which is up from 53% in January, while refinances fell to 43% of all loans, which is down from 47% in January, according to the report.
The average time to close a refinance dropped to 47 days from 53 days, while the time to close a purchase loan dropped to 45 days, down from 48 days in January.
The average closing rates for all loans was 70.6%, down from 72.2% in January. The average closing rate for refinances was 65.4%, down from 67.9% the month prior, while the average closing rate for purchases was 76.8%, up from 75.9%.
“The purchase market led the way in February, representing 57 percent of total closed loans,” says Jonathan Corr, president and CEO of Ellie Mae, in a statement. “Along with the growing purchase market, we’re seeing the time to close all loans decrease and FICO scores decline – trends that we will continue to watch in the coming months.”