Rates Near Lows Spur Mortgage Demand

According to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Applications Survey, the average mortgage rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances was virtually unchanged from the week before. However, rates for jumbo loans, loans backed by the Federal Housing Administration, and 15-year fixed-rate loans were all down from the previous week. Joel Kan, MBA’s associate vice president of economic and industry forecasting, says rates continue to hover near record lows. “Mortgage rates continue to hover at record lows this fall. The 30-year fixed mortgage rate remained essentially unchanged … last week, but rates for 15-year fixed-rate loans, FHA loans, and jumbo loans all fell to new MBA survey lows,” Kan said. The drop in rates led to boosted refinance demand, which saw a 6 percent week-over-week increase. Demand for loans to buy homes was down 1 percent from the previous week but remains 25 percent higher than last year at the same time. The MBA’s weekly survey has been conducted since 1990 and covers 75 percent of all retail residential mortgage applications. (source)

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