Mortgage Applications Up Slightly

Mortgage applications increased slightly for the week, even as mortgage rates climbed, according to a report released Wednesday by the Mortgage Bankers Association.

Overall, applications increased by a slim 0.5 percent for the week ending February 26. The Refinance Index increased 0.1 percent and was 7 percent higher than the same week one year ago, while the unadjusted Purchase Index increased 5 percent for the week and was 1 percent higher than the same week one year ago. 

The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 67.5 percent of total applications from 68.5 percent the previous week. The adjustable-rate mortgage share of activity increased to 2.9 percent of total applications.   

“The housing market is entering the busy spring buying season with strong demand,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting. “Purchase applications increased, with a rise in government applications – likely first-time buyers – pulling down the average loan size for the first time in six weeks.”