Rates on 30-year and 15-year mortgages dipped this week, but are up sharply from where they stood a year ago.

Rates on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 6.28 percent, down from 6.32 percent last week, Freddie Mac said Thursday in its weekly national survey. A year ago rates on 30-year mortgages averaged 5.26 percent.

Rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages fell to 5.63 percent, from 5.69 percent last week. A year ago, rates on 15-year mortgages averaged 4.66 percent.

For one-year adjustable-rate mortgages, rates rose to 3.98 percent, from 3.87 percent last week. At this time last year, rates on one-year ARMs were at 3.59 percent.

The nationwide averages for mortgage rates do not include add-on fees known as points. Thirty-year and 15-year mortgages each carried an average fee of 0.7 point this week, while one-year ARMs carried an average fee of 0.6 point.

With the economy moving solidly ahead, economists predict mortgage rates will slowly rise in the coming months.

The recent rise in mortgage rates, however, is slowing refinancing activity. Refinancings accounted for just 34.3 percent of total mortgage loan applications filed last week, down from 36.2 percent in the previous week, the Mortgage Bankers Association said.

AWARDS . . . The Maryland-National Capital Building Industry Association recognized 13 local custom-home builders for its 11th annual custom builder awards of excellence. Traditional custom homes: Wood Visions Construction (gold award), Sandy Spring Builders (gold award) and Brooks Run Builders (silver award). Cited for transitional custom homes: Sandy Spring Builders (gold award) and Bogdan Builders (silver award). Contemporary custom homes: Bob Davis & Associates and Homes of Distinction (joint gold award). Custom homes of less than 3,500 square feet of living space: Meridian Homes (gold award). Custom homes of 3,500 square feet to 5,000 square feet of living space: Golden Builders (gold award) and Wood Visions Construction (silver award). Custom homes of 5,000 square feet to 7,500 square feet of living space: Gibson Builders (gold award). Custom homes of 7,500 square feet to 12,500 square feet of living space: Wood Visions Construction (gold award). Custom homes of more than 12,500 square feet of living space: MB Visnic (gold award). Speculative luxury traditional homes of 3,500 square feet to 5,000 square feet: Chevy Chase Customs (gold award). Best whole-house custom renovation: Wolohan Design Build (gold award), Bell Builders (silver award) and Natelli Homes (bronze award). Best custom kitchen: Rosenthal Homes (gold award). . . . Central Parke Communities was presented two platinum awards from the National Association of Home Builders Seniors Housing Council for its active-adult housing community on the Eastern Shore, the Parke at Ocean Pines.

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