Is there still time to get a low mortgage or refinance rate? The short answer is yes, but you need to get the process started as soon as possible. It looks like rates are creeping up, and you do not want to be left holding an expensive mortgage.
This past week rates on mortgages moved ever so slightly higher. Yesterday, mortgage backed securities rose above the closing levels of last week Fridays close, however it looks like most are waiting until the Federal Reserve Meeting on Wednesday. Like always, everyone will wait on the Fed to take direction which has been the trend throughout February. What we have seen is that mortgage and refinancing applications have dropped 3.5% from last month according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. Watching these trends can be alarming because they include the Presidents’ Day holiday. Mortgage loan volume, decreased 3.4% from last month as well. That means that on an unadjusted basis, the Mortgage Index fell some 11% compared with the previous month. Further complicating matters is that the refinancing data fell 7.35% from the previous month. This could very well be caused by the harsh winter around the country. Housing starts are now expected to drop by at least 16% from the same period last year.
Where does this leave you? It’s time to jump on the bandwagon and get your home refinanced at mortgage rates that continue to be at historic lows, or if you are in the market to buy a new house, it’s time to lock in at a low rate. Remember that the refinance share of mortgage activity decreased by 38% over last month. Lenders are eager to get back in the game and get more money out on the street. The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) activity decreased to just fewer than 5% of all loan applications.
What we are seeing is that the average mortgage contract has an interest rate of 3.85% vs. 3.9% over the same period. These loans are for fixed mortgages with a loan of less than $417,000 and an 80% loan-to-value ratio (LTV). Jumbo loans with a 30 year mortgage have jumped as well. They have gone up to 4.06% from 3.92% with 80% LTV. It’s important to see that there continues to be time to refinance. However; the Federal Reserve is meeting this week and they have indicated that they will no longer let interest rates stay at these historic lows. One of the best ways to compare mortgage rates is to go online. One of the leading online mortgage comparison sites is I Want a Better Mortgage.
Although the average interest rate for 30 year mortgages with backing from FHA has jumped to 3.81% from 3.73% (with an 80% LTV), the effective rate increased from last week. The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs increased to 3.28% from 3.09%, with points decreasing to 0.31 from 0.47 (including the origination fee) for 80% LTV loans. To secure a better mortgage rate, go online to iwantabettermortgage, and fill out their online mortgage application for a free mortgage quote. Remember, the effective mortgage interest rates are beginning to increase. It’s time to lock into your new mortgage now.