Rates Shoot Back Up

Mortgage rates shot back up, rising from 5.13% last week to an average of 5.55%, Freddie Mac reported Thursday.

Freddie’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey (PMMS) found that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 5.55%, continuing a rollercoaster few weeks that has seen both a 30-point rate decrease and a 20-point increase.

A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 2.87%.

“The combination of higher mortgage rates and the slowdown in economic growth is weighing on the housing market,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist. 

“Home sales continue to decline, prices are moderating, and consumer confidence is low. But, amid waning demand, there are still potential homebuyers on the sidelines waiting to jump back into the market.”

All signs point to a cooling market. Black Knight’s Home Price Index recently posted a drop in home prices for the first time in 32 months.

But the correction to a “balanced” market is only just beginning, and will probably take a while.

“It’s a particularly bad time to buy right now,” Mark Zandi, chief economist for Moody’s Analytics, told Bloomberg.

“If I were a buyer, I’d be waiting. Affordability has been crushed, demand is weakening rapidly, and listings are rising. I expect house prices to go flat in some of the most active markets and for some to come down.”

Additional findings from Thursday’s report:

  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.85% with an average 0.8 point.
  • A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 2.17%.
  • 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 4.36%, with an average 0.4 point.
  • A year ago at this time, the 5-year ARM averaged 2.42%.