The Washington Post

Mortgage rates fall for second week in a row

(Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg)

Mortgages rates have wandered downward again, according to the latest data released Thursday by Freddie Mac.

Mortgage chart April 17

As the spring home buying season heats up, mortgage rates are doing their part to encourage activity.

The 30-year fixed-rate average sank to 4.27 percent with an average 0.7 point, its lowest level since Feb. 6. It was 4.34 percent a week ago and 3.41 percent a year ago. It was the second decline in as many weeks.

The 15-year fixed-rate average fell to 3.33 percent with an average 0.6 point. It was 3.38 percent a week ago and 2.64 percent a year ago. The 15-year fixed rate is at its lowest level since March 20.

Hybrid adjustable rate mortgages were mixed. The five-year ARM average 3.03 percent with an average 0.5 point. It was 3.09 percent a week ago and 2.6 percent a year ago.

The one-year ARM average edged up to 2.44 percent with an average 0.5 point. It was 2.41 percent a week ago and 2.63 percent a year ago.

“Mortgage rates continued to ease this week as housing starts rose 2.8 percent in March but not as much as expected,” Frank E. Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist, said in a statement.

“Also, permits fell 2.4 percent in March to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 990,000, which followed a slight downward revision of 4,000 permits in February.”

Meanwhile, falling mortgage rates have led to an increase in mortgage applications, according to the latest data from the Mortgage Bankers Association.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of total loan application volume, rose 4.3 percent. The Refinance index grew 7 percent, while the Purchase Index increased 1 percent.

The refinance share of mortgage activity showed its first gain in nine weeks, accounting for 52 percent of all applications, up from 51 percent the week before.

Kathy Orton is a reporter and Web editor for the Real Estate section. She covers the Washington metropolitan area housing market.



Success! Check your inbox for details. You might also like:

Please enter a valid email address

See all newsletters

Show Comments
Most Read



Success! Check your inbox for details.

See all newsletters

Your Three. Videos curated for you.
Play Videos
How to make Sean Brock's 'Heritage' cornbread
New limbs for Pakistani soldiers
The signature dish of Charleston, S.C.
Play Videos
Why seasonal allergies make you miserable
John Lewis, 'Marv the Barb' and the politics of barber shops
What you need to know about filming the police
Play Videos
The Post taste tests Pizza Hut's new hot dog pizza
5 tips for using your thermostat
Michael Bolton's cinematic serenade to Detroit
Play Videos
Full disclosure: 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, 1 ghoul
Pandas, from birth to milk to mom
The signature drink of New Orleans
Next Story
Kathy Orton · April 17, 2014

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.