Mortgage credit availability increased 0.7% in September compared with August to reach a score of 181.4 on the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI).
A decrease in the index score indicates that lending standards are tightening, while increases are indicative of loosening credit. The index was benchmarked to 100 in March 2012.
Credit availability for conforming and conventional loans saw the greatest increase in September – both were up 1.5%. Credit availability for jumbo loans increased 1.4% while credit availability for government loans increased 0.2%.
“Mortgage credit availability increased in September due to continuing updates to conforming loan programs as well as agency jumbo programs that have been phased in over the last few months,” explains Lynn Fisher, vice president of research and economics for the MBA, in a statement. “For the year to date, the supply of credit has increased only modestly in the non-jumbo space while it has expanded significantly among jumbo programs.”