New Record: Mortgage Rates Nearly Below 3%

Mortgage rates are flirting with dropping below 3 percent for the first time in history. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.03 percent for the week ending Thursday, the lowest rate in Freddie Mac’s mortgage survey that started nearly 50 years ago. “The summer is heating up as record low mortgage rates continue to spur homebuyer demand,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist. “However, it remains to be seen whether the demand will continue if COVID cases rise to the point that it hinders economic growth.” Even with the low rates, mortgage credit remains extremely tight. The Mortgage Bankers Association also announced Thursday that credit availability fell to its lowest level since April 2014. Also Thursday, realtor.com announced that housing supply “remains the…

Credit Availability At Lowest Level In 6 Years

Low rates, scarce credit. With mortgage rates at historically low levels, mortgage credit availability in the United States decreased even further in June, according to a report released Thursday by the Mortgage Bankers Association. MBA’s Mortgage Credit Availability Index fell by 3.3 percent to 125 in June – reflecting a 30 percent drop in credit availability since February, the month before the coronavirus pandemic gripped the nation. The index reached its lowest level since April 2014. “Mortgage credit supply dropped again in June, as investors further reduced their willingness to purchase jumbo loans and those with lower credit scores. Lenders are navigating a gradual economic and housing market recovery that is still facing headwinds from the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic,” said…

Mortgage Rates Hit Record Low

Mortgage rates just hit another record low. Freddie Mac announced that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.07 percent for the week ending Thursday, the lowest rate in the surveys history dating back nearly 50 years. “Mortgage rates continue to slowly drift downward with a distinct possibility that the average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage could dip below 3 percent later this year,” Freddie’s Chief Economist Sam Khater said. “On the economic front, incoming data suggest the rebound in economic activity has paused in the last couple of weeks with modest declines in consumer spending and a pullback in purchase activity.” The survey found:  The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.07 percent with an average 0.8 point, down from 3.13 percent and last years…

Mortgage Rates Remain At Record Lows

No news is good news for borrowers. The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.13 percent for the second week in a row, remaining at a record low, Freddie Mac announced Thursday in its Primary Mortgage Market Survey. “After the Great Recession, it took more than 10 years for purchase demand to rebound to pre-recession levels, but in this crisis, it took less than 10 weeks,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist. “The rebound in purchase demand partly reflects deferred sales as well as continued interest from prospective buyers looking to take advantage of the low mortgage rate environment.” The survey found: 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.13 percent with an average 0.8 point for the week ending June 25, unchanged from…

Mortgage Rates Increase Slightly

Mortgage rates hovered near record lows again this week, with the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaging 3.21 percent, according to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey released Thursday. “The rebound in homebuyer demand continued this week, driven by mortgage rates that hover near record lows,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist. “This turnaround in demand, particularly by those who have higher incomes than the typical household, also reflects deferred sales from the spring.” The survey found that for the week ending June 11: 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.21 percent with an average 0.9 point, up slightly from last week when it averaged 3.18 percent and down from 3.82 percent a year ago.15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 2.62 percent with an average…

Powell: Rates To Stay At 0 Until Economy Improves

Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said Wednesday that the Fed is committed to “using our full range of tools to support the economy and to help assure that the recovery from this difficult period will be as robust as possible.” That includes keeping interest rates very low. “In March, we quickly lowered our policy interest rate to near zero, where we expect to keep it until we are confident that the economy has weathered recent events and is on track to achieve our maximum employment and price stability goals,” he said. In speaking with reporters after the Fed meeting, Powell stressed the public health crisis caused by the coronavirus pandemic is far from over – and the economic impacts will…

Interest Rates Climb Slightly

Interest rates didn’t set yet another new record this week, but they are still hovering at historically low levels. Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey found that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage increased to 3.18 percent this week. “While the economy is slowly rebounding, all signs continue to point to a solid recovery in home sales activity heading into the summer as prospective buyers jump back into the market. Low mortgage rates are a key factor in this recovery,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist. “While homebuyer demand is up and has been broad-based across most geographies, supply has been slower to improve. In fact, the gap between supply and demand has widened even further than the large gap that…

Interest Rates Remain Very Low

Interest rates are parked at a super low level, with no signs of budging. Freddie Mac said Thursday that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.28 percent for the week ending May 14, the seventh consecutive week that it has been below 3.35 percent. “Mortgage rates have stabilized at very low levels over the last few weeks as homebuyer demand slowly improves,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist. “Although purchase applications reached a new low in mid-April, today purchase demand is only down ten percent from one year ago. While demand is improving, inventory is low and declining with no signs of a turnaround yet.” The Primary Mortgage Market Survey found: The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.28 percent with an…

Credit Tightens Further As Rates At Record Lows

By Jim Perskie Economic difficulties caused by the coronavirus are making it harder for borrowers to obtain mortgage credit, even as interest rates have plunged to historic lows. The Mortgage Bankers Association announced Thursday that the Mortgage Credit Availability Index (MCAI) dropped 12.2 percent in April, reflecting a tightening of the lending standards in the market. “The abrupt weakening of the economy and job market – and the uncertainty in the outlook – drove credit availability down in April for the second consecutive month,” said Joel Kan, MBA’s Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting. “The overall index fell to its lowest level since December 2014, and the sub-indexes pointed to tightened credit supply for all loan types. The…

Mortgage Rates At All-Time Low Amid Credit Squeeze

Freddie Mac announced Thursday that the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to 3.23 percent, the lowest rate in the survey’s 50-year history. “The size and depth of the secondary mortgage market is helping to keep rates at record lows,” Freddie Mac chief economist Sam Khater said. “These low rates are driving higher refinance activity and have modestly helped improve purchase demand from their extremely low levels in mid-April.”  Despite the low rates, however, there are clear signs that the credit market is tightening amid the coronavirus pandemic, meaning fewer and fewer people are able to take advantage of the historically low rates. Redfin announced Wednesday that its Mortgage Credit Availability Index dropped 16 percent in March and is at its lowest level in…