Mortgage Rates Ease for Second Consecutive Week

Mortgage Rates Ease for Second Consecutive Week
Freddie Mac | August 17, 2018

Borrowers had slightly more relief with mortgage rates again this week. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rate dipped again, averaging 4.53 percent, Freddie Mac reports.

“The stability in borrowing costs comes despite the highest core inflation rates since 2008 and turbulence in the currency markets,” says Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist. “Unfortunately, this pause in rates is not leading to increasing home sales.”

Last week, mortgage applications for home purchases once again trailed levels from last year. “It’s clear that in some markets the combination of ascending home prices, limited affordable inventory, and this year’s higher rates are curtailing home buyer demand,” Khater says.

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Freddie Mac reports the following national averages with mortgage rates for the week ending Aug. 16:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.53 percent, with an average 0.5 point, falling from last week’s 4.59 percent average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.89 percent.
  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.01 percent, with an average 0.5 point, dropping from last week’s 4.05 percent average. A year ago, 15-year rates averaged 3.16 percent.
  • 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 3.87 percent, with an average 0.4 point, down from last week’s 3.90 percent average. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 3.16 percent.

Source: “Mortgage Rates Step Back,” Freddie Mac (Aug. 16, 2018); REALTOR® Magazine Online 081718

Dip in Rates Provides ‘Stability’ for Home Sales

Dip in Rates Provides ‘Stability’ for Home Sales
Freddie Mac | August 10, 2018

Borrowers saw a little relief from recent increases. Mortgage rates dropped slightly this week, with the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaging 4.59 percent, Freddie Mac reports.

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“This stability is much needed for home sales, which have crested because of the multiyear run up in prices, tight affordable inventory, and this year’s higher rates,” says Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist. “Going forward, the strong economy will support the housing market, but with affordability pressures mounting, further spikes in mortgage rates will lead to continued softening in home price growth.”

Home prices are still climbing and rates are up from 3.90 percent a year ago. “Some prospective buyers are definitely feeling an affordability crunch,” Khater says.

Freddie Mac reports the following national averages with mortgage rates for the week ending Aug. 9:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.59 percent, with an average 0.5 point, dropping from last week’s 4.60 percent average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.90 percent.
  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.05 percent, with an average 0.5 point, falling from last week’s 4.08 percent average. A year ago, 15-year rates averaged 3.18 percent.
  • 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 3.90 percent, with an average 0.3 point, falling from last week’s 3.93 percent average. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 3.14 percent.

Source: “Mortgage Rates Inch Backward,” Freddie Mac (Aug. 9, 2018); REALTOR® Magazine Online 081018

Hike in Mortgage Rates Erases Affordability Relief

Hike in Mortgage Rates Erases Affordability Relief
Freddie Mac | August 3, 2018

Borrowers got stuck with higher mortgage rates again this week. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage climbed for the second consecutive week, averaging 4.6 percent. Mortgage rates are now at their fourth highest level of the year, Freddie Mac reports.

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“The higher rate environment, coupled with the ongoing lack of affordable inventory, has led to a drag on existing-home sales in the last few months,” says Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist.

The Federal Reserve this week voted to hold off on raising its short-term rate, “but the embers of a strong economy potentially stoking higher inflation, borrowing costs will likely modestly rise in the coming months,” Khater adds.

Even with home price growth easing slightly in some markets, Khater notes that mortgage rates hovering near a seven-year high will certainly create affordability challenges for prospective buyers looking to close on a home purchase.

Freddie Mac reports the following national averages with mortgage rates for the week ending Aug. 2:

30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.60 percent, with an average 0.4 point, rising from last week’s 4.54 percent average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.93 percent.

15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.08 percent, with an average 0.4 point, increasing from last week’s 4.02 percent average. A year ago, 15-year rates averaged 3.18 percent.

5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 3.93 percent, with an average 0.2 point, rising from last week’s 3.87 percent average. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 3.15 percent.

Source: Freddie Mac; REALTOR® Magazine 080318

Mortgage Rates Fall to 3-Month Low

Mortgage Rates Fall to 3-Month Low
Freddie Mac | July 6, 2018

Mortgage rates were back down across the board again this week, offering some temporary relief to home buyers. Rates posted a rapid increase throughout most of the spring but have recently reversed course, declining in five of the past six weeks. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is now at its lowest average since April.

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“The run-up in mortgage rates earlier this year represented not just a rise in risk-free borrowing costs, but for investors, the mortgage spread also rose back to more normal levels by about 20 basis points,” says Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist. “What that means for buyers is good news. Mortgage rates may have a little more room to decline over the very short term.”

Freddie Mac reports the following national averages with mortgage rates for the week ending July 5:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.52 percent, with an average 0.5 point, dropping from last week’s 4.55 percent average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.96 percent.
  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.99 percent, with an average 0.4 point, falling from last week’s 4.04 percent average. A year ago, 15-year rates averaged 3.22 percent.
  • 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 3.74 percent, with an average 0.3 point, falling from last week’s 3.87 percent average. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 3.21 percent.

Source: Freddie Mac; REALTOR® Magazine 070618

Falling Mortgage Rates Offer Affordability Relief

Falling Mortgage Rates Offer Affordability Relief
Freddie Mac | June 29, 2018

Mortgage rates declined this week, marking the fourth drop in the past five weeks, Freddie Mac reports.

“The decrease in borrowing costs is a nice slice of relief for prospective buyers looking to get into the market this summer,” says Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist. “Some are undoubtedly feeling the affordability hit from swift price appreciation and mortgage rates that are still 67 basis points higher than this week a year ago.”

Overall, Khater says the economy and the housing market are on “solid footing” this summer, which should support continued strength in housing demand. “Home price growth is still high, but is expected to moderate, and while sales activity has slowed, it’s primarily because of stubbornly low supply,” Khater says.

Freddie Mac reports the following national averages with mortgage rates for the week ending June 28:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.55 percent, with an average 0.5 point, falling from last week’s 4.57 percent average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.88 percent.
  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.04 percent, with an average 0.5 point, which is unchanged from a week ago. Last year at this time, 15-year rates averaged 3.17 percent.
  • 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 3.87 percent, with an average 0.3 point, rising from last week’s 3.83 percent average. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 3.17 percent.

Source: Freddie Mac; REALTOR® Magazine 062918

Mortgage Rates Drop Again This Week

Mortgage Rates Drop Again This Week
Freddie Mac | June 22, 2018

Borrowers found lower mortgage rates again this week, marking the third decrease in rates in the past four weeks.

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“After a sharp run-up in the early part of 2018, rates have stabilized over the last three months, with only a modest uptick since March,” says Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist. “However, existing-home sales have hit a wall, declining in six of the last nine months on a year-over-year basis.”

The National Association of REALTORS® reported earlier this week that existing-home sales—completed transactions for single-family homes, townhomes, condos, and co-ops—dropped 0.4 percent to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.43 million in May. Sales are now 3 percent lower than a year ago. Home prices also reached a new all-time high last month—a median of $264,800.

“Persistently low supply levels, and not this year’s climb in mortgage rates, are handcuffing sales—especially at the lower end of the market,” Khater says. “Home shoppers can’t buy inventory that doesn’t exist.”

Freddie Mac reports the following national averages with mortgage rates for the week ending June 21:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.57 percent, with an average 0.5 point, falling from last week’s 4.62 percent average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.90 percent.
  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.04 percent, with an average 0.4 point, falling from last week’s 4.07 percent average. A year ago, 15-year rates averaged 3.17 percent.
  • 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 3.83 percent, with an average 0.3 point, unchanged from a week ago. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 3.14 percent.

Source: Freddie Mac; REALTOR® Magazine 062218

Mortgage Rates Near Highest Averages of Year

Mortgage Rates Near Highest Averages of Year
Freddie Mac article by Daily Real Estate News | June 15, 2018

Mortgage rates were back on the rise this week, increasing to their second highest level this year. The move follows the Federal Reserve’s vote on Wednesday to raise its federal fund rate by 25 basis points.

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The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage followed suit, rising eight basis points to average 4.62 percent during the week, Freddie Mac reports.

“The good news is that the impact on consumer budgets will be smaller than past rate hike cycles,” says Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist Sam Khater. “That is because a much smaller segment of mortgage loans in today’s market are pegged to short-term rate movements. The adjustable rate mortgage share of outstanding loans is a lot smaller now—8 percent versus 31 percent—than during the Fed’s last round of tightening between 2004 and 2006. Still, inflation continues to firm and borrowing costs are inching higher. Although wages are slowly growing, stronger gains would certainly go a long way in helping consumers offset these increases in prices and rates.”

Freddie Mac reports the following national averages with mortgage rates for the week ending June 14:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.62 percent, with an average 0.4 point, up from last week’s 4.54 percent average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.91 percent.
  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 4.07 percent, with an average 0.4 point, rising from last week’s 4.01 percent average. A year ago, 15-year rates averaged 3.18 percent.
  • 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 3.83 percent, with an average 0.3 point, rising from last week’s 3.74 percent average. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 3.15 percent.

Source: Freddie Mac; REALTOR® Magazine Online, Daily Real Estate News 061518