Mortgage rates still hover near historical lows

by Candyd Mendoza19 Aug 2019

Mortgage rates still remain at low levels after weeks of relentless declines, according to the latest results of the Freddie Mac Primary Mortgage Market Survey.

Last week's 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) of 3.60% with an average 0.5 point remained unchanged from the previous week's rate. A year ago, the 30-year FRM was 4.53%.

The 15-year FRM, on the other hand, went up from 3.05% to 3.07% with an average 0.5 point last week. In 2018 at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 4.01%.

Meanwhile, the five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) dwindled to 3.35% with an average 0.3 point, down from 3.36% the week before and 3.87% a year ago.

Freddie Mac Chief Economist Sam Khater said that the continuous drops in mortgage rates bring many advantages.

"The sound and fury of the financial markets continue to warn of an impending recession. However, the silver lining is mortgage demand reached a three-year high this week," Khater said. "The decline in mortgage rates over the last month is causing a spike in refinancing activity – as homeowners currently have $2 trillion in conventional mortgage loans that are in the money – which will help support consumer balance sheets and increase household cash flow. On top of that, purchase demand is up 7% from a year ago.”