Mortgage rates dropped for the fifth straight week last week. Home loans are officially "on sale".
Conforming 30-year mortgage interest rates retreated another 5 basis points (0.05%) last week to fall to 3.92% last week, on average. Meanwhile, the average 15-year mortgage rate dropped a whopping 10 basis points (0.10%) to reach 3.08 percent.
Both rates are at their lowest recorded levels of 2014 and their best in 72 weeks.
At today's low rates, home purchasing power has increased, and millions of U.S. homeowners are potentially eligible for a refinance. It's a terrific time to compare today's mortgage rates or consider a home purchase.
Each week, government-backed Freddie Mac conducts a mortgage rate survey of 125 banks nationwide. The survey asks banks reply with their "going" mortgage rate for a prime mortgage borrower, along with the number of accompanying discount points required to lock that rate.
A prime borrower, as defined by Freddie Mac, is one with ample home equity or downpayment, high credit scores, and documented income which meets or exceeds mortgage underwriting standards.
HARP mortgages from Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are not considered "prime", nor are VA loans or FHA loans which are backed by the Department of Veterans Affairs and the Federal Housing Administration, respectively.
Freddie Mac's weekly survey shows the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage rate at 3.92%. In order to get Freddie Mac's 3.92% mortgage rate, borrowers are paying 0.5 discount points, on average.
Paying 0.5 discount points will add $500 in closing costs for every $100,000 borrowed. Loans in high-cost areas, therefore, a classification which includes Loudoun County, Virginia; Potomac, Maryland; and Orange County, California, which can be made at the maximum $625,500 loan size, would carry a one-time cost of $3,125.
0.5 discount points fewest number of discount points required by lenders since April 2008.
With mortgage rates so low, there are 5 types of homeowners who should probably refinance immediately.
The 15-year fixed rate mortgage rate also decreased last week, falling one-tenth of one percentage points. The 15-year loan can be locked at 3.08% for borrowers willing to pay 0.5 discount points at closing.
Some mortgage lenders now quote 15-year rates in the 2s.
Mortgage rates dropped big last week, but dropped unevenly between U.S. regions. This is because mortgage rates and pricing are a regional market. Depending on the state in which your home is located, your quoted mortgage rate may be higher or lower than the national average.
In today's market, the best place for low rates is the West Coast. "Rate-and-fee" combinations are most aggressive in Freddie Mac's West Region. This area includes California, Arizona, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Utah, Idaho, Montana, Hawaii, Alaska, and Guam.
West Region mortgage rates average 3.89% with an accompanying 0.6 discount points.
By contrast, the most "expensive" mortgages are going to applicants the Southeast Region, an area which includes North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Georgia, Alabama, Florida, Mississippi, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands.
Rates in the Southeast Region average 3.95% with 0.5 discount points required.
By region, Freddie Mac reports :
Note that discount points are tax-deductible at times; and that discount points are optional. If you prefer your loan with "no points", tell your lender. Many banks make no-point rates available to buyers and refinancing households.
Freddie Mac shows the average 30-year fixed rate conventional mortgage rate at 3.92% this week. If you missed your chance to refinance earlier this year, or have a high interest rate on your current home loan, today is a good day to consider lower rates.
The typical refinancing household saves more than 30%, according to Freddie Mac. See how much you can save. Instant mortgage rate quotes are available at no cost, with no social security number required to get started, and with no obligation to proceed.
The information contained on The Mortgage Reports website is for informational purposes only and is not an advertisement for products offered by Full Beaker. The views and opinions expressed herein are those of the author and do not reflect the policy or position of Full Beaker, its officers, parent, or affiliates.
Barry L. Systems Analyst
The Mortgage Reports is an excellent resource. I depend on the Mortgage Reports for the most up-to-date information regarding shifts in government policy and mortgage rate information in general.
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Sarah M. Office Manager
The Mortgage Reports has been an invaluable resource to me -- it helped me to pick the sweet spot to refinance. Thanks!
2015 Conforming, FHA, & VA Loan Limits
Mortgage loan limits for every U.S. county, as published by Fannie Mae & Freddie Mac, the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), and the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA)