Mortgage Rates Decline as Home Prices Surge 7.5 Percent
Mortgage rates declined again this week, continuing to defy the experts who forecast higher rates in 2015. Average 30 year mortgage rates today are at 3.82 percent, down from last week's average rate of 3.86 percent. Low mortgage rates make homes more affordable but a shortage of homes available for sale is sending home prices higher.
The National Association of Realtors® reported the median existing home price in February, 2015 was 7.5 percent higher than a year ago. The median existing-home price for all housing types in February was $202,600. The NAR also reported this is the 36th consecutive month of year-over-year price gains.
Mortgage rates will eventually move higher in 2015 but might not as high as expected. Forecasts are for average 30 year conforming rates to hit 5.00 percent by the end of the year. I believe forecasts will be lowered to around 4.50 percent to 4.75 percent sometime over the next couple months.
Smart home buyers are taking advantage of the lowest rates in generations, especially home buyers who require jumbo mortgage loans. The Mortgage Bankers Association reported mortgage amounts are rising faster than home prices, driven higher by the strength in high end home sales that are financed.
Current mortgage rates on 15 year conforming loans are averaging 3.02 percent, down from last week's average rate of 3.08 percent. I didn't think it would happen again but we will probably see average 15 year rates fall back below 3.00 percent this week.
Mortgage interest rates haven't increased as much as expected because 10 year U.S. bond yields haven't increased. Forecasts had 10 year bond yields around 3.50 percent by mid-2015. Current 10 year yields are much lower at 1.88 percent.
Bond yields remain low because investors are rushing into bonds, getting a better yield in the U.S. current at 1.88 percent. Comparable German and Japanese 10 year bond yields are much lower. Current 10 year German bonds are yielding 0.22 percent and 10 year Japanese bonds are yielding 0.33 percent.
30 year jumbo mortgage rates are averaging 4.08 percent, a decline from the previous week's average jumbo rate of 4.17 percent. By the end of this week, average 30 year jumbo rates will fall back below 4.00 percent. There are lenders currently quoting 30 year jumbo refinance rates with points, well below 4.00 percent.
Today's mortgage rates on 15 year jumbo loans are averaging 4.07 percent, up from last week's average 15 year jumbo rate of 4.01 percent. If you're searching for a 15 year jumbo loan Citi Mortgage is quoting 15 year rates at 2.875 percent with 0.63 points.
Conforming 5 year adjustable mortgage rates are averaging 3.13 percent, down from the prior week's average 5 year rate of 3.26 percent. Current 5 year jumbo adjustable rates are averaging 3.50 percent, an increase from last week's average rate of 3.40 percent.
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