Insights for Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania


Mortgage refinance applications surged in 2020 as homeowners in Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania sought to take advantage of lower interest rates during the COVID-19 pandemic. This report explores disparities by applicant race and income in mortgage refinance applications and originations.

Key points to remember:

  • Refinance mortgages grew more than 200% in Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania in 2020. But growth for black and low- and moderate-income (LMI) homeowners was only about half three-quarters of the overall growth level.
  • Even though the refusal rate of black and LMI refinance applicants has improved, these applicants have still been refused at higher rates than applicants overall. A high debt-to-income ratio was the most cited reason an IMT applicant was denied a refinance mortgage. For black applicants, it was credit history.
  • Refinancing a residential mortgage can lower a homeowner’s monthly mortgage payment, put more money in their pockets and reduce the risk of default.
  • Financial institutions and organizations that support homeowners can help create a fairer financial system by working with Black homeowners and LMI to remove barriers that prevent them from enjoying the benefits of mortgage refinancing.


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