MBA Vice President of Research and Economics Lynn Fisher blamed Mother Nature and her unruly twins Harvey and Irma for the negative data.
"Applications for new home purchases were down year over year in large part due the impacts of hurricane activity," Fisher said. "In particular monthly applications fell by 37 percent in Florida and 11 percent in Texas, which account for a large share of the applications in the survey."
The MBA estimated new single-family home sales at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 571,000 units in September, a 12.8 percent drop from August (655,000 units). On an unadjusted basis, MBA estimated 42,000 new home sales in September, a 19.2 percent decline from 52,000 new home sales in August. The average loan size of new homes decreased from $334,940 in August to $334,722 in September.
Conventional loans composed 72.3 percent of loan applications last month, while FHA loans composed 13.9 percent, VA loans composed 12.7 percent and RHS/USDA loans composed one percent.