Housing, home loan market to be better: Wells Fargo CEO

Wells Fargo CEO: Not a boom time for housing

The housing market and demand for home loans are going to be better, although it won't be a "boom" time because of a few factors standing in the way, Wells Fargo Chairman and CEO John Stumpf said Friday.

The head of the largest mortgage lender in the United States pointed to things such as student debt, household formation happening later and the perception that credit is not available.

However, that perception is wrong, he said.

"It really is more available now and at still great rates. [It's] very affordable for housing," Stumpf said in an interview with "Closing Bell."

John Stumpf, CEO of Wells Fargo
Adam Jeffery | CNBC

More buyers are entering the market this spring, with signed contracts to buy existing homes rising 1.1 percent in March. So-called pending home sales are now 11.1 percent higher than they were one year ago.

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Meanwhile, while the Federal Reserve is holding interest rates at near zero, Stumpf is hopeful the central bank will liftoff sooner rather than later. He anticipates the first rate hike of 25 basis points will likely come in September.

"I think rates should normalize and equal the strength of the economy and that's … surely in the short-end more than zero," he said.

He believes that once the Fed begins to raise rates, there will be a flattening of the curve.

"I don't know that you're going to see long rates move a lot," he said. "Europe is weak. QEs [are occurring] around the world. Anytime interest rates pop up, the 10-year [U.S. Treasury] pops over 2 or 2.10. There are so many buyers out there. That's going to keep long rates down for longer."

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Stumpf also addressed Wells Fargo's purchase of General Electric's real estate assets, announced in April.

"This is kind of a once-in-a-generation event," he said. "We love the commercial real estate business

—CNBC's Diana Olick contributed to this report.