Mortgage Applications 33% Higher Than Last Year

Mortgage applications were up 33 percent from a year ago, according to a report released Wednesday by the Mortgage Bankers Association.

Purchase applications were down 2 percent from the previous week while remaining significantly higher than a year ago. The Refinance Index was down 10 percent from the previous week but was 34 percent higher than 2019 levels.

Overall, mortgage applications were down 6.5 percent for the week ending Aug. 21.

“The home purchase market remains a bright spot for the overall economy,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting. “Purchase applications were essentially unchanged but were 33 percent higher than a year ago – the 14th straight week of year-over-year gains. Mortgage rates at record lows and households looking for more space are driving this summer’s surge in demand.”

The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 62.6 percent of total applications from 64.6 percent the previous week. The adjustable-rate mortgage share of activity decreased to 2.6 percent of total applications.