Average fixed-rate mortgages mostly remained unchanged this week as the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage continues to remain 4 percent, Freddie Mac reports.
Freddie Mac reports the following national averages for the week ending Nov.19:
- 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.97 percent, with an average 0.6 point, dropping from last week’s 3.98 percent average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.99 percent.
- 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.18 percent, with an average 0.5 point, dropping from last week’s 3.20 percent average. A year ago, 15-year rates averaged 3.17 percent.
- 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 2.98 percent, with an average 0.5 point, falling from last week’s 3.03 percent average. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 3.01 percent.
Source: Freddie Mac
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The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is getting closer to moving over 4 percent, as mortgage rates climb for the second week in a row. Freddie Mac reports that fixed-rate mortgages are rising in anticipation of a possible rate increase by the Federal Reserve and a recent strong jobs report. Please provide comments about this and your local area!
Freddie Mac reports the following national averages with for the week ending Nov. 12:
- 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.98 percent, with an average 0.6 point, rising from last week’s 3.87 percent average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 4.01 percent.
- 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.20 percent, with an average 0.6 point, increasing from last week’s 3.09 percent average. A year ago, 15-year rates averaged 3.20 percent.
- 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 3.03 percent, with an average 0.4 point, climbing from last week’s 2.96 percent average. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 3.02 percent.
- 1-year ARMs: averaged 2.65 percent, with an average 0.2 point, increasing from 2.62 percent last week. A year ago, 1-year ARMs averaged 2.43 percent.
Source: Freddie Mac
Home owners may struggle to keep warm this winter. About 90 percent of existing homes lack enough insulation, according to newly released research from the North American Insulation Manufacturers Association.
“If all U.S. homes were fitted with insulation based on the 2012 International Energy Conservation Code (IECC), residential electricity use nationwide would drop by about 5 percent and natural gas use by more than 10 percent,” says Jonathan Levy, professor of Environmental Health at Boston University School of Public Health and lead researcher on the Boston University team.
“The fall is when many home owners around the country begin thinking about home improvements to increase comfort and reduce their energy bills as temperatures drop come winter,” says Curt Rich, president and CEO of NAIMA. “Research like this should reinforce our message to homeowners, and to policymakers, that added insulation has real and significant benefits.”
Source: “Ninety Percent of U.S. Homes Are Underinsulated,” BUILDER Online (Oct. 5, 2015)
The wrong paint color can be a big turn-off to potential home buyers. House Beautiful recently highlighted some of the worst mistakes home owners can make when it comes to painting their house, including:
1. Painting a ceiling a flat white color. “I never paint a ceiling dead white because all white paint has a bit of gray in it, and it takes the room down,” designer Athalie Derse told House Beautiful. Instead, she suggests choosing a cream shade.
2. Too many colors from room to room. “Even when I don’t use the same colors everywhere, I still like the rooms to feel connected,” designer Mona Ross Berman says. “The bedroom should never feel like it’s in a completely different house than the living room. The whole house has to make sense as one.”
3. Using the same color palette for the entire house. On the flip side, home owners who only stick to one color palette may be making the home too bland. “A two-color scheme can be great, but there has to be some relief, or it comes across as too pat and makes everything seem stiff,” says designer Tom Scheerer.
4. Matching. “You never want to match your walls to a color in one of your fabrics,” Sallie Giordano says. “It will be too strong. Find a grayed-out version of the color.”
5. Use neutrals to balance out color. Some home owners may be tempted to go overboard with one color. “The biggest mistake people make when they’re trying to be colorful and exciting is to forget that you need to balance it with neutrals,” says designer Todd Klein. He adds that architectural elements in white or even a few gray throws can give visitors’ eyes a place to rest.
Source: “The 9 Paint Color Mistakes You Should Never Make,” House Beautiful (August 2015)
The Federal Reserve once again decided not to raise the federal funds rate this month, saying the economy is still falling short of benchmarks. That likely means home buyers will be able to take advantage of lower mortgage rate for awhile longer too.
Federal Open Markets Committee members released a statement Wednesday that said in an effort to “support continued progress toward maximum employment and price stability, the Committee today reaffirmed its view that the current zero to one-quarter percentage target rate for the federal funds rate remains appropriate.”
The FOMC will not decide on a rate hike again until its next meeting in December. At that time, the FOMC says it will assess progress with labor conditions as well as inflation pressures and expectations in deciding whether to raise rates at that time.
Jonathan Smoke, realtor.com®’s chief economist, predicted earlier this week. “That decline was likely a result of the stock market declines in August and September,” he said. “If builders are not focusing on first-time buyers, they are focusing on the segments most likely to be disrupted by declines in stock portfolios and retirement plans.”
Source: “Fed Again Delays Interest Rate Hike,” HousingWire (Oct. 28, 2015) and “Fed Keeps Interest Rates at Record Lows,” The Associated Press (Oct. 28, 2015)
Averages on fixed-rate mortgages dropped lower this week, continuing to provide a benefit to home buyers and refinancers, Freddie Mac reports.
Freddie Mac reports the following national averages for the week ending Oct. 22:
- 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.79 percent, with an average 0.6 point, dropping from last week’s 3.82 percent average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 3.92 percent.
- 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 2.98 percent, with an average 0.5 point, falling from a 3.03 percent average. A year ago, 15-year rates averaged 3.08 percent.
- 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 2.89 percent, with an average 0.4 point, rising from last week’s 2.88 percent average. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 2.91 percent.
Source: Freddie Mac
Interest rates may remain lower longer than originally expected. The Federal Reserve recent comments suggest it may continue to hold off in raising short-term interest rates and weaker-than-expected consumer demand is all pushing Treasury yields lower.
“In response, the 30-year mortgage rate climbed 6 basis points to 3.82 percent, marking 12 consecutive weeks below 4 percent. Late-breaking news suggests mortgage rates may remain in this territory a while longer. After this week’s survey closed, Federal Reserve Governor Daniel Tarullo was quoted suggesting the Fed may not act this year, and Wednesday the 10-year Treasury closed under 2 percent in reaction to economic releases indicating weak consumer demand.”
Freddie Mac reports the following national averages for the week ending Oct. 15:
- 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.82 percent, with an average 0.6 point, rising from last week’s 3.76 percent average. A year ago, 30-year rates averaged 3.97 percent.
- 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.03 percent, with an average 0.6 point, increasing from last week’s 2.99 percent average. Last year this time, 15-year rates averaged 3.18 percent.
- 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 2.88 percent, with an average 0.4 point, holding the same as last week. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 2.92 percent.
- 1-year ARMs: averaged 2.54 percent, with an average 0.2 point, dropping from last week’s 2.55 percent. Last year at this time, 1-year ARMs averaged 2.38 percent.
Source: Freddie Mac
Homebuying in rural communities is on the rise: Last year mortgages for home purchases increased at a faster rate in rural communities than in the rest of the country. What’s more, rural borrowers paid significantly higher rates of interest than urban or suburban home buyers, according to a newly released analysis of the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act by Keith Wiley, senior research associate at the Housing Assistance Council.
Rural home purchase originations climbed by nearly 7 percent in 2014 year-over-year. Meanwhile, the overall national increase in home purchases increased 4 percent.
Rural home buyers are paying higher interest rates than urban or suburban buyers. About 15 percent of all rural home purchase loans were classified as “high cost” last year – that’s up from 11 percent in 2013. The rate of rural high cost lending is about 4 and 3 percentage points higher than the rate for suburban and urban loans.
Source: “Rural Communities Attract More Buyers,” Real Estate Economy Watch (Oct. 9, 2015)
Low mortgage rates, declining home prices, and homes that are lingering on the market longer are three main reasons why the next three months could be the best time to buy so far this year, says Jonathan Smoke, realtor.com®’s chief economist.
“The spring and summer home-buying seasons were especially tough on potential buyers this year with increasing prices and limited supply,” Smoke says. “Buyers who are open to a fall or winter purchase should find some relief with lower prices and less competition from other buyers.”
The biggest challenge buyers will likely face buying in the next three months is the limited number of choices. There are fewer homes for-sale this fall than last year plus the housing inventory has already peaked for 2015, Smoke says and we agree.
Source: “Mortgage Rates: Three Reasons to Buy in the Next Three Months,” Nerdwallet (Oct. 2, 2015)