Industry News

Mortgage rates fall to 4-month low

Weak home sales could point to more severe economic slowdown

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Mortgage rates dropped for the fifth straight week to lows not seen since April on expectations that the housing market slowdown will ease inflation fears, according to surveys conducted by Freddie Mac and Bankrate.com. In Freddie Mac's survey, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage sank to an average 6.48 percent this week, down from last week's average of 6.52 percent, and is now at its lowest since April 6, 2006, when it averaged 6.43 percent. The average for the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage also fell from last week, down to 6.18 percent from 6.2 percent, and is now at its lowest point since the week ending April 20, when it was 6.17 percent. Points, which are fees charged by lenders for loan processing expressed as a percent of the loan, averaged 0.4 on the 30- and 15-year loans. The five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) fell to 6.14 percent this week, with an average 0.5 point, down from last week's rate of 6.18 percent. The one-year Treasury-indexed ARM aver...