Mortgage rates start 2013 right where they left off – near record lows
Rates little changed week over week
Mortgage rates stayed relatively even week-over-week, hovering near all-time record lows to begin 2013, Freddie Mac said in its first weekly mortgage report of the year.
According to Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey for the week ending January 3, 2013, mortgage rates were little changed on a weekly basis, with fixed mortgage rates staying close to historical lows.
Fixed mortgage rates dip
Average rates for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages dropped slightly to 3.34 percent from the previous week’s 3.35 percent average, while shorter-term 15-year fixed mortgages fell to an average rate of 2.64 percent from 2.65 percent the previous week.
One year ago at this time, 30-year fixed mortgages averaged 3.91 percent and 15-year fixed mortgages averaged 3.23 percent.
ARM rates rise slightly
Average rates for 5-year adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) rose slightly to 2.71 percent from 2.70 percent the previous week, while 1-year ARMs rose week-over-week to an average of 2.57 percent from 2.56 percent.
One year ago at this time, 5-year ARMs averaged 2.86 percent and 1-year ARMs averaged 2.80 percent.
With mortgage rates hovering near record lows, Freddie Mac noted, homebuyer affordability remains high and should help to boost the current recovery in the housing market.
“Mortgage rates started the year near record lows which should continue to aid the ongoing housing recovery,” Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist at Freddie Mac, said in a statement.
Nothaft also pointed out other positive movements in the housing market that are aiding recovery.
“New home sales rose in November to a two-year high and were up 15.3 percent from the previous November,” he said. “Similarly, pending sales on existing homes increased for the third month in November to the strongest pace since April 2010.”