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Data Pointed to Weak Housing Market in March Despite Low Mortgage Rates

Data Pointed to Weak Housing Market in March Despite Low Mortgage Rates

Recent data released on existing home sales and applications for mortgage loans pointed to a weak housing market so far this year. This is despite the fact that mortgage rates have actually declined since the bringing of the year. This week 30 year mortgage rates are averaging 4.25 percent, down from January's average of 4.50 percent.

Mortgage rates did run up from record lows early in 2013 and the increases didn't have an impact on housing last year. So why the weakness in housing so far this year?

There are other factors that could be in play here besides mortgage rates. New tighter lending standards set by the Dodd-Frank bill could be having an impact. Stagnant wages and income combined with higher debt loads could also be curbing the demand for homes. Young people are living with their parents longer instead of purchasing homes.

The National Association of Realtors reported existing home sales in March were down 7.5 percent compared to March 2013. The decline from February to March 2014 was only 0.2 percent. The market might have already turned the corner as pending home sales increased this month, the first increase in 9 months. The NAR's Pending Home Sales Index a forward-looking indicator based on contract signings, rose 3.4 percent to 97.4 from an upwardly revised 94.2 in February.

Mortgage rates are increasing in 2014 but hopefully the increases won't kill the housing recovery. Average 30 year mortgage rates are still only 1.00 percent higher from the record lows set in 2013. Historically speaking, mortgage rates are still incredibly low and will remain historically low for next several years.

Average 30 year mortgage rates are at 4.25 percent but you can find rates below the average and below 4.00 percent. Below is a sample list of current 30 year conventional rates quoted by lenders in the state of Florida. The lenders listed below are also quoting these rates in most other states in the U.S.

Best 30 Year Mortgage Rates

  • Aimloan.com 3.875% with 1.10 points

  • EPIC Funding 4.00% with no points

  • Aimloan.com 4.00% with 0.10 point

  • Round Point Mortgage 4.00% with 1.995 points

  • Sebonic Financial 4.00% with 2 mortgage points

  • Third Federal Savings and Loan 4.04% with 1 point

Mortgage rates today on 15 year conforming loans are averaging 3.29 percent, down from an average 15 year rate of 3.35 percent last week. The lowest 15 year mortgage rate on our rate list for the state of Colorado is at 2.75 percent with 1.10 points. The lowest 15 year refinance rates currently available on our list of lenders are below.

Lowest 15 Year Refinance Rates

  • Aimloan.com 2.75% with 1.10 points

  • Round Point Mortgage 2.875% with 1.971 points

  • Aimloan.com 2.875% with 0.10 point

  • EPIC Funding 3.00% with zero points

  • Aimloan.com 3.00% with zero points

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Author: Brian McKay
April 29th, 2014