Press Release

Average Time to Close a Loan Plummets to 46 Days According to Latest Origination Insight Report

Closing rates near 70 percent for the first time since Ellie Mae began tracking data

PLEASANTON, Calif. – March 16, 2016 – Time to close all loans decreased to 46 days, the shortest time to close since May 2015, according to the latest Origination Insight Report released by Ellie Mae® (NYSE:ELLI), a leading provider of innovative on-demand software solutions and services for the residential mortgage industry. The average time to close a purchase decreased from 51 days in January to 48 days in February, while time to close a refinance also decreased from 48 days in January to 44 days in February. Similarly, the average time to close FHA loans decreased from 51 days in January to 47 days in February. Time to close VA loans decreased from 53 days to 50 days.

Conventional purchase closing rates continued to climb, reaching 74.5 percent in February, up from 73.8 percent in January. Average closing rates for all loans are the highest since Ellie Mae began tracking data in August 2011. Closing rates for all loans increased 1.5 percentage points to 69.9 percent. Refinance closing rates increased to nearly 66 percent, while purchase closing rates increased to just over 74 percent.

In terms of loan purpose, purchases represented 52 percent of all closed loans while refinances as a percentage of lenders’ overall loan volume fell one percentage point to 46 percent.

“For the first time since October 2015, we’re seeing a substantial decrease in days to close from 50 days in January to 46 days in February,” said Jonathan Corr, president and CEO of Ellie Mae. “This could be due to lenders becoming more familiar with the new loan estimate and closing disclosure forms and business process around Know Before You Owe. We’re also seeing closing rates continue their upswing, increasing one percentage point to 69 percent. This is the highest we’ve seen closing rates since we began tracking data in August of 2011.”

The Origination Insight Report mines its application data from a robust sampling of approximately 75 percent 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.

Other findings from the February report:

  • The average 30-year rate for all loans decreased from 4.30 in January to 4.22 in February
  • DTI remained consistent for the fifth consecutive month at 25/39.
6 Months Ago
(August 2015)*
1 Year Ago
(Feb. 2014)*
Closed Loans
Refinance 46% 47% 37% 59%
Purchase 52% 52% 62% 41%
FHA 22% 22% 24% 19%
Conventional 65% 65% 63% 69%
VA 9% 10% 10% 9%
Days to Close
All 46 50 47 38
Refinance 44 48 50 36
Purchase 48 51 45 40
Percentage of ARM & Fixed Loans
ARM % 5.1% 5.3% 5.6% 4.0%
15 Year % 10.7% 11.1% 9.8% 11.1%
30-Year Rate
Average 4.22% 4.30% 4.313% 4.008%

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

  Closed First-Lien Loans (All Types) Denied Loans
(All Types)
FICO Score (FICO) 720 645
Loan-to-Value (LTV) 79 87
Debt-to-Income (DTI) 25/39 28/49

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 prior—or the November 2015 applications—to calculate an overall closing rate of 69.9 percent in February 2016 (see full report).

About the Ellie Mae Origination Insight Report

The Origination Insight Report focuses on loans that closed or were denied in a specific month and compares their characteristics to similar loans that closed or were denied three and six months earlier. 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. The report does not disclose client-specific or proprietary information.

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

About Ellie Mae

Ellie Mae (NYSE:ELLI) is a leading provider of innovative on-demand software solutions and services for the residential mortgage industry. Mortgage lenders of all sizes use Ellie Mae’s Encompass® all-in-one mortgage management solution, Mavent Compliance Service, and AllRegs research, reference and education resources to improve compliance, loan quality and efficiency across the entire mortgage lifecycle. Visit or call (877) 355-4362 to learn more.


Erica Harvill
Ellie Mae, Inc.
(925) 227-5913

Alexandra Gardell Kreuter
(646) 428-0618

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© 2016 Ellie Mae, Inc. Ellie Mae®, Encompass®, AllRegs®, DataTrac®, Ellie Mae Network, Mavent®, Mortgage Returns®, Prospect Manager®, Total Quality Loan®, True CRM®, TQL® and the Ellie Mae logo are trademarks of Ellie Mae, Inc. or its subsidiaries. All rights reserved. Other company and product names may be trademarks or copyrights of their respective owners.

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