Freddie Mac: 2019 claimed the fourth-lowest average mortgage rate on record

Aly J. Yale
Aly J. Yale
The Mortgage Reports Contributor
December 30, 2019 - 1 min read

A year of low rates

The year 2019 was one of low historically low mortgage rates. In fact, according to Freddie Mac, the annual average clocked in as the fourth–lowest rate in almost 50 years.

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2019’s mortgage rates among lowest in five decades

Last week’s 30–year, fixed–rate loan averaged a 3.74% mortgage rate. And across the entire year? It came in at 3.9% – one of the lowest averages in five decades.

As Freddie Mac’s chief economist Sam Khater explains, “The 30–year fixed–rate mortgage rate saw little change again this week and averaged just 3.9% during 2019, the fourth lowest annual average level since 1971 when Freddie Mac started its weekly survey.”

Only three other years saw average rates lower than 2019: 2016, which averaged 3.65%, 2012 (3.66%), and 2015 (3.85%).

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Where will mortgage rates go in 2020

It looks like 2020 should be another good year for rates, according to experts. Freddie Mac predicts an annual average of 3.8%, while Fannie Mae expects 3.6%. The Mortgage Bankers Association predicts a 3.7% average.

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Increasing residential construction should also help improve conditions for 2020 homebuyers, though home prices are expected to keep rising.

“Heading into 2020, low mortgage rates and the improving economy will be the major drivers of the housing market with steady increases in home sales, construction, and home prices,” Khater said. “While the outlook for the housing market is bright, worsening housing affordability is no longer a coastal phenomenon and is spreading to many interior markets and it is a threat to the continued recovery in housing and the economy.”

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Do you want to take advantage of today’s low mortgage rates? Then shop around and see what rates you qualify for today.

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