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Loan Demand Surges as Mortgage Rates Hover Near 6 Month Lows

Loan Demand Surges as Mortgage Rates Hover Near 6 Month Lows

Mortgage rates have hovered near 6 months lows and people are finally taking notice as loan demand surges. In this week's Application Survey released by The Mortgage Bankers Association the composite index, a measure of all home loan activity, increased 10.3 percent from one week earlier.

During the past week average, 30 year conventional mortgage rates have been range-bound between 4.15 percent and 4.20 percent. The average rate has been stable just above 4.00 percent but you can easily find lenders quoting 30 year mortgage rates today below 4.00 percent. If you're willing to pay points, you can find 30 year rates quoted as low as 3.75 percent.

These low rates and increasing home prices are breathing life back into the refinance market. Homeowners who missed the refinance boat last year when refinancing rates hit record lows now have another change to refinance to a low rate. The MBA's Refinance Index increased 11 percent from the previous week and refinances continue to make up a majority of all loan activity again. The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to 54 percent of total applications, up from 53 percent the previous week.

Current mortgage rates on 15 year conforming loans are averaging 3.21 percent this week, up slightly from last week's average 15 year mortgage rate of 3.17 percent. Average 15 year rates have also been range-bound between 3.15 percent and 3.25 percent the past week. In the coming weeks we may actually see average 15 year mortgage rates fall back below 3.00 percent.

Currently, there are many lenders quoting 15 year mortgage refinance rates below the average of 3.21 percent and below 3.00 percent. Checking on rates, the lowest 15 year refinance rates are at 2.75 percent with just over one mortgage point. The lowest 15 year refinancing rates without points are at 3.00 percent.

Homebuyers are taking advantage of low mortgage rates. The MBA reported the Purchase Index, which is a measure of home loan activity for home purchases, increased 9 percent from one week earlier. The Purchase Index is a leading indicator for future home sales, an increase in purchase loans will probably lead to an increase in home purchases in the coming months.

Today's mortgage rates on 30 year jumbo loans are averaging 4.58 percent, up from last week's average 30 year jumbo mortgage rate of 4.50 percent. 30 year jumbo rates are higher this week but are still near six months lows and still low historically speaking. Checking on home lender rates, the best jumbo mortgage rates are at 4.00 percent with 0.50 mortgage points. The lowest jumbo rates without points are still below the average rate at 4.125 percent.

15 year jumbo mortgage rates today are averaging 4.11 percent, an increase from the previous week's average 15 year jumbo mortgage rate of 4.07 percent. Average 15 year jumbo rates are still near lows for the past six months and there are lenders quoting rates below 4.00 percent. The best 15 year jumbo refinance rates available are much lower than the average at 3.25 percent with 0.88 points. The lowest 15 year jumbo refi rates are also very low at 3.50 percent.

Author: Brian McKay
June 12th, 2014