Record-Low Long-term Mortgages Are Helping to Brighten Economic Outlook
The average US rates on fixed mortgages recently fell steeply and moved closer to historic lows, a shift favored by many in the mortgage marketplace. Freddie Mac, one of the country’s largest mortgage buyers, announced Thursday, April 11th, 2013, that the average rate for the 30-year fixed loan fell to 3.43 percent from 3.54 percent the previous week. These figures are very close to the 3.31 percent that was reached in November 2012, which also represented the lowest percentage recorded since 1971. The average rate on the 15-year fixed mortgage also dipped to 2.65 percent from 2.74 percent the previous week with figures only slightly above the record low of 2.63 percent in 1971.
The Red-Hot U.S. Rental Market Begins to Level Off
Apartment hunters in the United States found average rent prices higher than expected in the first quarter of 2013. The cost of renting a home could still go up a little more in the near future, but not by much. Landlords have been enjoying several months of rent increases, but this windfall seems on the verge of finishing.
Details Emerge on No-Doc Loan Modification Program
After July 1st, 2013, borrowers who are late on their mortgages guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac may see a letter from their servicer explaining their eligibility for the new Streamlined Modification Initiative (SMI). According to the official press release by the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), the program aims to add a simplified option for homeowners to save their homes from default and foreclosure.