If you want to buy a home and go to a bank for a mortgage, you may get a warmer welcome than people have received in years.
The mortgage lending market is thawing. Banks are providing more mortgages after essentially closing up shop when the housing crash and financial crisis devastated mortgage brokers and many lenders in 2008, according to new research by the Urban Institute Housing Finance Policy Center.
During the first half of this year, banks originated and held on to 34 percent of the mortgages people obtained to buy homes, said researcher Karan Kaul. That contrasts with just 15 percent in 2008, a period when government-related lending was essentially the only game in town after deeply injured banks went into hibernation.