March Origination Insight Report From Ellie Mae Shows 30-Year Note Rate Continues to Decline; Refinance Percentage Increases Slightly

According to the March Origination Insight Report from Ellie Mae, the leading cloud-based platform provider for the mortgage finance industry, the 30-year note rate dropped for the third straight month to 4.77%, down from 4.86% in February and 5.01% in January. The percentage of refinances on all loans increased to 35%, up from 34% the month prior.

As we enter the busy spring home buying season, we are seeing activity tick back up across the board with the 30-year note rate decline, said Jonathan Corr, President and CEO of Ellie Mae. We will continue to watch closing rates as they have stayed at or above 75% through the first quarter of 2019, a possible indication of buyers conviction.

Other statistics of note in March included:

  • The percentage of FHA refinances increased to 23% in March, up from 20% in February.
  • Time to close all loans continued to decrease. Time to close all loans was 42 days in March, down from 43 in February and 45 in January. The time to close a purchase loan dropped to 45 days in March, down from 47 in February and 49 in January.
  • The percentage of Adjustable Rate Mortgages (ARMs) decreased to 7.4%, down from 7.6% in February.

The Origination Insight Report mines data from a robust sampling of approximately 80% of all mortgage applications that were initiated on the Encompass all-in-one mortgage management solution. Ellie Mae believes the Origination Insight Report is a strong proxy of the underwriting standards employed by lenders across the country.

In addition to the Origination Insight Report, Ellie Mae also distributes data from its monthly Ellie Mae Millennial Tracker on the first Wednesday of each month. The Ellie Mae Millennial Tracker focuses on mortgage applications submitted by borrowers born between the years 1980 and 1999.



    Mar. 2019*   Feb. 2019*  

6 Months Ago (Sept. 2018*)


1 Year Ago (Mar. 2018*)

Closed Loans
Refinance   35%   34%   29%   38%
Purchase   65%   66%   71%   62%
FHA   20%   19%   20%   20%
Conventional   64%   64%   65%   66%
VA   11%   11%   10%   10%
Days to Close
All   42   43   44   41
Refinance   34   35   42   37
Purchase   45   47   45   43
Percentage of ARM and Fixed Loan Volume
ARM %   7.4%   7.6%   7.2%   6.3%
30-Year Rate
Average   4.77%   4.86%   4.91%   4.69%

*All references to months should be read as month ended.




Closed First-Lien Loans (All Types)

FICO Score (FICO)   726
Loan-to-Value (LTV)   79
Debt-to-Income (DTI)   25/38

More information and analysis of closed and denied loans by loan purpose and investor are available in the full report at

To get a meaningful view of lender pull-through, Ellie Mae reviewed a sampling of loan applications initiated 90 days prioror the December 2018 applicationsto calculate an overall closing rate of 75.3 percent in March 2019 (see full report).

About the Ellie Mae Origination Insight Report

The Origination Insight Report focuses on loans that closed in a specific month and compares their characteristics to similar loans. The closing rate is calculated on a 90-day cycle rather than on a monthly basis because most loan applications typically take one-and-a-half to two months from application to closing. Loans that do not close could still be active applications or applications withdrawn by consumers or denied for incompleteness or non-qualification.

The Origination Insight Report details aggregated, anonymized data pulled from Ellie Maes Encompass origination platform.

News organizations have the right to reuse this data, provided that Ellie Mae, Inc. is credited as the source.

About Ellie Mae

Ellie Mae is the leading cloud-based platform provider for the mortgage finance industry. Ellie Maes technology solutions enable lenders to originate more loans, lower origination costs, and reduce the time to close, all while ensuring the highest levels of compliance, quality, and efficiency. Visit or call (877) 355-4362 to learn more.

 2019 Ellie Mae, Inc. Ellie Mae, Encompass, AllRegs, Mavent, Velocify, the Ellie Mae logo and other trademarks or service marks of Ellie Mae, Inc. appearing herein are the property of Ellie Mae, Inc. or its subsidiaries. All rights reserved. Other company and product names may be trademarks or copyrights of their respective owners.

Erica Harvill
Ellie Mae, Inc.
(925) 227-5913
[email protected]

Caitlin Coffee
(312) 635-8204
[email protected]