Mortgage Demand Falls As Rates Rise

According to the Mortgage Bankers Association's Weekly Applications Survey, average mortgage rates rose again last week. Rates were up for 30-year fixed-rate loans with both conforming and jumbo balances, loans backed by the Federal Housing Administration, and 15-year fixed-rate loans. Mike Fratantoni, MBA's senior vice president and chief economist, says demand for mortgage applications fell as a result. “Application volumes for both purchase and refinance loans decreased last week due to these higher rates,” Fratantoni said. “While refinance demand is almost entirely driven by the level of rates, purchase volume continues to be constrained by the lack of homes on the market.” Demand for loans to buy homes was down 3 percent last week and is now 31 percent lower than it was at the same time last year. Refinance activity, on the other hand, was down 7 percent week-over-week. The MBA's weekly survey has been conducted since 1990 and covers 75 percent of all retail residential mortgage applications. (source)

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