The share of refinances closed by millennials in October increased month-over-month, reaching a new high as interest rates on 30-year loans continued to decrease. According to the latest Ellie Mae Millennial Tracker, 34% of all loans closed by millennials in October were refinances, up 1% month-over-month, marking the highest refinance share since Ellie Mae began tracking the data in January 2016.

Refinances made up 41% of Conventional loans closed by millennials, up slightly from 40% in September, while refinance share for FHA loans stayed flat month-over-month at 10%. For VA loans, refinance share decreased to 42%, down six percentage points from the previous month.

Refinance share peaked in October as the average interest rate on all 30-year loans fell once again, dropping to 3.9% from 3.91% the month prior. October marked the second straight month that the average interest rate on all 30-year loans remained below 4%. Before September, it had not fallen under 4% since December 2016.

“Declining interest rates have significantly increased millennials’ awareness of refinancing as a fiscally responsible option and we’re seeing more and more homeowners in this demographic take advantage of refinancing their mortgages,” said Joe Tyrrell, chief operating officer at Ellie Mae. “Heading into 2020, lenders should proactively reach out to prospective millennial homebuyers whose likelihood of purchasing a home has now increased due to these historically low interest rates.”

With refinance activity on the rise, days to close a refinance loan increased across the board. Overall, days to close on all refinances jumped to 44 days in October, up two days month-over-month. This trend was consistent for all loan types, as days to close for Conventional refinances (44), FHA refinances (51) and VA refinances (48) all increased in October.

Additional insights from the September Millennial Tracker include:

  • Average days to close refinances increased in several key markets including, Los Angeles (42), Chicago (44), Austin (43), San Diego (41), Miami (48), San Francisco (43) and Dallas (41).
  • The average age of the primary borrower on all closed loans was 30.6, tied for the highest mark of any month in 2019.
  • The average FICO score on all closed loans reached 730, the highest average score of the year.
  • Conventional loans accounted for 74% of all closed loans, compared to 21% for FHA loans, 2% for VA loans and 3% for other.

Ellie Mae® is the leading cloud-based platform provider for the mortgage finance industry. The Ellie Mae Millennial Tracker is an interactive online tool that provides access to up-to-date demographic data about this new generation of homebuyers. It mines data from a robust sampling of approximately 80 percent of all closed mortgages dating back to 2014 that were initiated on Ellie Mae’s Encompass® all-in-one mortgage management solution. Given the size of this sample and Ellie Mae’s market share, it is a strong proxy of Millennial mortgage indicators across the country. Searches can be tailored by borrower geography, age, gender, marital status, FICO score and amortization type. For more information, visit

About the Ellie Mae Millennial Tracker

The Ellie Mae Millennial Tracker focuses on Millennial mortgage applications during specific time periods. Ellie Mae defines Millennials as applicants born between the years 1980 and 1999. New data is updated on the first Monday of every month for two months prior. The Millennial Tracker is a subset of our Origination Insight Report, which details aggregated, anonymized data pulled from Ellie Mae’s Encompass origination platform. Additional information regarding the Origination Insight Report can be found at News organizations have the right to reuse this data, provided that Ellie Mae, Inc. is credited as the source.

About Ellie Mae

Ellie Mae is the leading cloud-based platform provider for the mortgage finance industry. Ellie Mae’s technology solutions enable lenders to originate more loans, reduce origination costs, and shorten the time to close, all while ensuring the highest levels of compliance, quality and efficiency. Visit or call 877.355.4362 to learn more.


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

Caitlin Coffee
(312) 635-8204