Updates & Announcements
ICE Mortgage Technology’s 2023 Borrower Insights Survey indicates caution to buy and sell, but lender opportunities remain
PLEASANTON, Calif. – May 5, 2023 – ICE Mortgage Technology®, part of Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. (NYSE: ICE), a leading global provider of data, technology and market infrastructure, is pleased to announce the results of the 2023 Borrower Insights Survey. The survey describes a 2022 landscape that was difficult to navigate for borrowers, renters, and lenders alike, due to high interest rates and the prospect of a recession. As a result, 2022 was a year of extreme volatility in the home lending market. And, by all indications, 2023 may bring more of the same.
Easy does it: 2023 borrower trends
The survey results pointed to a slow market, marked by caution. Among the notable findings:
- Over a third of current borrowers (36%) reported that they planned to remain in their current homes and another sixteen percent were unsure if they will seek new housing.
- Of those definitely remaining in their homes, one-third (36%) specifically cited high interest rates as the reason for staying put.
- Nearly two-thirds (63%) of recent borrowers planned to seek new financing, with many citing home equity loans or reverse mortgages, as well as refinancing and investment property loans.
- Over one-third of current renters in our sample are former homeowners (34%).
- Seventy-three percent of renters believed that owning a home is beyond their reach at this time.
- Fifty-six percent of current renters said they would be more likely to purchase a home if there was a program that addressed high home prices, and fifty-four percent said they would be more likely to buy if there was a program that addressed high interest rates.
These statistics indicate that staying put for the time being is a priority for many homeowners, as they watch and wait amidst fluctuating interest rates and market conditions. That said, many of those same homeowners seem to be open to new financing options, if they can find something that meets their financial goals. There also appears to be an opportunity to reach more renters with creative purchasing options. As a result, deepening existing borrower relationships and building new ones remains essential.
So, what are today’s borrowers and potential borrowers looking for? The survey indicates the following:
- Flexibility: When it comes to financing a mortgage, more than half (53%) cited flexible loan options among their most important considerations.
- Savings: Two-thirds (67%) said saving money was one of their top three concerns for financing a mortgage; more than half cited low lender fees (56%).
- Education and guidance: Renters continue to think that owning a home is more difficult than it is. Half believed it’s necessary to provide more than a ten percent down payment (53%).
- High tech and high touch: Fewer than one in ten borrowers wanted a fully digital experience (9%), although many welcomed the convenience of digital processes and services.
- Different kinds of outreach based on different experiences: Experienced borrowers (those who have taken out five or more mortgages in their lifetime) favored digital offerings. Those who bought when interest rates were low (one to two years ago) indicated being most likely to be cautious about selling their home.
- Trusted referrals: Borrowers, especially the least experienced, relied on referrals to choose lenders, turning to their realtors, family, or friends.
Know your borrowers, and help guide their future
The survey paints the picture of a somewhat stalled market, though how severely and for how long it remains that way is unclear. Borrower preferences continue to be influenced by recent experiences with interest rate volatility, home prices, and the pandemic. Lenders are encouraged to tap into their knowledge of their borrowers and their local marketplace to inform their strategies. The following steps can make a huge difference:
- Invest in your online offering. Even the oldest and least tech-savvy borrowers want and expect the convenience of digital portals and processes to be part of your service portfolio.
- Digitize your back office. Your technology investment should not be confined to customer-facing offerings. Smart back-office automation will free you and your people for the all-important task of maintaining relationships.
- Invest in relationships with realtors. Borrowers are reliant on referrals from realtors, friends, and family. Developing and maintaining relationships is essential – the quality of your referral network could be the margin of difference. Remember that “high tech, high touch” is what nearly all borrowers expect and want.
- Know your borrower. Understanding borrowers’ preferences by age and experience will enable you to “meet them where they are.”
- Stay in touch. Ongoing relationships will generate repeat business and referrals years from now.
“Borrowers are more savvy than ever before,” said Sara Holtz, VP of Demand Marketing and Communications at ICE Mortgage Technology. “Many people are comfortable waiting out current market fluctuations until just the right scenario presents itself for a refinance. Smart lenders will use this time to stay top of mind for future borrowers, and prioritize efforts like staying in touch with customers, keeping current and prospective borrowers up-to-date on market trends, and educating them on creative lending options that are available for a variety of circumstances.”
Whether the market continues on its current course, or falling interest rates create a surge of purchase and refinance activity, building the right technology and maintaining healthy borrower relationships will help ensure that in an unpredictable future, lenders can still experience a steady and growing stream of business.
Click here to download the 2023 ICE Mortgage Technology Borrower Insights Survey eBook.
About the Survey
The 2023 Borrower Insights Survey polled 2,010 individuals age 18 and older in the U.S., 1,005 of whom own their current residence and have taken out a mortgage loan within the last five years, and 1,005 of whom are currently renting. Borrowers were asked about the factors and the elements of the experience that are most important to them during the loan process. Renters were asked about their perceptions of the home buying experience and their expectations about the requirements of homebuying. The survey was fielded using the Qualtrics Insight Platform and the panel was sourced from Lucid. Fielding took place in January and February of 2023.
About ICE Mortgage Technology
About ICE Mortgage Technology ICE Mortgage Technology® is part of ICE (NYSE: ICE), a global data, technology and market infrastructure company that designs, builds and operates digital networks to connect people to opportunity. Backed by ICE’s global resources, we offer a truly differentiated digital platform that provides straight-through processing for a more comprehensive end-to-end workflow than any other provider in the market. We reach almost every mortgage in the U.S. by combining the native automation of Encompass® with the e-collaboration and e-recording capabilities of Simplifile®, along with the national electronic registry for nearly 90% of the U.S. mortgage market in MERS®. Ultimately, our technology enables people across the industry to focus on personal connections when they need it most, and support borrowers for a better journey of homeownership. Visit icemortgagetechnology.com to learn more.
About Intercontinental Exchange
Intercontinental Exchange, Inc. (NYSE: ICE) is a Fortune 500 company that designs, builds and operates digital networks to connect people to opportunity. We provide financial technology and data services across major asset classes that offer our customers access to mission-critical workflow tools that increase transparency and operational efficiencies. We operate exchanges, including the New York Stock Exchange, and clearing houses that help people invest, raise capital and manage risk across multiple asset classes. Our comprehensive fixed income data services and execution capabilities provide information, analytics and platforms that help our customers capitalize on opportunities and operate more efficiently. At ICE Mortgage Technology, we are transforming and digitizing the U.S. residential mortgage process, from consumer engagement through loan registration. Together, we transform, streamline and automate industries to connect our customers to opportunity.
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Safe Harbor Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 -- Statements in this press release regarding ICE's business that are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. For a discussion of additional risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see ICE's Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filings, including, but not limited to, the risk factors in ICE's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2022, as filed with the SEC on February 2, 2023.