The average interest rate on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages climbed to 7.84 percent this week, up from 7.75 percent last week, according to a weekly survey released by Freddie Mac.

Mortgages rates generally have been rising this year. The average rate on a 30-year mortgage hit a low of 6.74 percent in January and a high of 8.15 percent in August.

Fifteen-year mortgages, often used in loan refinancings, averaged 7.46 percent this week, up from the average of 7.36 percent last week.

On one-year adjustable-rate mortgages, lenders were asking an average initial rate of 6.49 percent this week, also up from 6.45 percent the previous week.

The rates do not include add-on fees known as points, which averaged about 1 percent of the loan amount for all three types of mortgages.

In another development, the Mortgage Bankers Association of America said that mortgage loan applications for the week ending Nov. 26 decreased 37.3 percent from the previous week and were down 46.7 percent compared with the same week last year.

PERSONNEL . . . James Mahoney has been elected chairman of the District-based National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association . . . James P. O'Conor has been promoted to senior vice president of NRT Inc., a residential real estate brokerage firm. O'Conor is a founder of O'Conor, Piper & Flynn ERA, a Maryland brokerage that recently was acquired by NRT. O'Conor will continue as chairman of his former firm while overseeing NRT's mid-Atlantic operations. John G. Evans, another one of the founders, will become president and chief operating officer of the O'Conor, Piper & Flynn . . . Toll Brothers Inc. promoted Steve Spaulding to land acquisition manager, Washington division . . . Steve M. Hays was elected chairman of the board of the National Institute of Building Sciences and Mary Ellen R. Fise was elected vice chairman.

IN THE NEWS . . . Virginia's State Corporation Commission's Bureau of Insurance is offering its free updated homeowners' insurance guides for Virginia consumers, featuring premium comparisons. Call 1-800-552-7945 to order.

UPCOMING EVENTS . . . The Washington Metropolitan Chapter of the Community Associations Institute, a group representing condominium, cooperative, homeowner and neighborhood associations, will hold its holiday party Tuesday from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m. at the Glenview Mansion, 603 Edmonston Dr., Rockville. The cost is $20. Those attending are being asked to bring an unwrapped toy. For information, call Crystal Danielson at 703-750-3644 or visit the Web site at

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