Mortgage applications climb again

The latest numbers from MBA's weekly survey

Mortgage applications climb again

Mortgage applications climbed 2.2% in the week ending on November 18, the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) has reported, with results adjusted to account for the observance of Veterans Day.

The MBA’s market composite index measures the mortgage loan application volume across the country. It reported a 2.2% increase on a seasonally adjusted basis for the week ending on November 18, 2022 from the week earlier, or a 10% increase on an unadjusted basis. Meanwhile, the association’s refinance index rose by 2% on a weekly basis but plummeted by 86% on a yearly one.

After seasonal adjustments, the MBA’s purchase index increased by 3% from the previous week. On an unadjusted basis, this represented a 9% increase from the previous week and a 41% fall from the same week last year.

The 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage fell for the second week in a row to 6.67%, which MBA vice president and deputy chief economist Joel Kan observed was now almost 50 basis points lower than the recent peak of 7.16% recorded a month ago.

Read more: October sees 29% drop in new home mortgage applications

“The decrease in mortgage rates should improve the purchasing power of prospective homebuyers, who have been largely sidelined as mortgage rates have more than doubled in the past year,” Kan said. “As a result of the drop in mortgage rates, both purchase and refinance applications picked up slightly last week. However, refinance activity is still more than 80% below last year’s pace.”

With the decline in rates, the adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of applications saw its own dip in volume to just 8.8% of loans last week. This was down from “the range of 10% and 12% during the past two months” according to Kan.

Refinancing took a larger share of mortgage activity in the week ending November 18, 2022, increasing to 28.4% of total applications from the 27.6% it held the previous week.

The share of Federal Housing Administration loans in the total number of applications tumbled by 10 basis points from 13.5% to 13.4% on a weekly basis. Similarly, the proportion of Veterans Affairs loans tumbled from 10.6% to 10.5% of all applications. The USDA share of total applications held fast at 0.6%.

Read next: MBA offers comments on FHA annual report

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances decreased to 6.67% from 6.90%, while the average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances – or those greater than the conforming loan balance of $647,200 – decreased to 6.3% from 6.5% the previous week.