New Low! 30yr. fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.71%

Bill Hitchcock

FreddieLong-Term Rates Set Another Low in Freddie Mac Weekly Survey

McLean, VA – Freddie Mac (NYSE:FRE) today released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey® (PMMS®) in which the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 4.71 percent with an average 0.7 point for the week ending December 3, 2009, down from last week when it averaged 4.78 percent. Last year at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 5.53 percent. The 30-year has never been this low since Freddie Mac began its weekly survey in 1971.

The 15-year FRM this week averaged 4.27 percent with an average 0.6 point, down from last week when it averaged 4.29 percent. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 5.77 percent. The 15-year FRM has never been this low since Freddie Mac started tracking it in 1991, and breaks the record low set last week.

The 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 4.19 percent this week, with an average 0.6 point, up slightly from last week when it averaged 4.18 percent. A year ago, the 5-year ARM averaged 5.77 percent.

The 1-year Treasury-indexed ARM averaged 4.25 percent this week with an average 0.6 point, down from last week when it averaged 4.35 percent. At this time last year, the 1-year ARM averaged 5.02 percent. The 1-year ARM has not been this low since the week ending June 30, 2005, when it averaged 4.24 percent.

(Average commitment rates should be reported along with average fees and points to reflect the total cost of obtaining the mortgage.)

“Interest rates for 30-year and 15-year fixed-rate mortgages fell for the fifth consecutive week to an all-time record low while the average rate on 5-year ARMs hovered near its record set in the previous week,” said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist. “In addition, interest rates on 30-year and 15-year fixed mortgages thus far in 2009 averaged one percentage point below their respective average in 2008.

“Low mortgage rates and the cumulative decline in house prices have contributed to an extremely affordable housing market and helped spur home sales this year. For instance, total new and existing home sales in October were 36 percent higher than their January low on a seasonally adjusted, annualized rate, according to the U.S. Census Bureau and the National Association of Realtors® (NAR). The NAR also reported that pending existing home sales rose for the ninth straight month in October, representing the longest consecutive gain since the series began in 2001, according to the National Association of Realtors. Seven of those months were the most affordable on record dating back to 1971, based on the NAR’s Housing Affordability Index.”

Freddie Mac was established by Congress in 1970 to provide liquidity, stability and affordability to the nation’s residential mortgage markets. Freddie Mac supports communities across the nation by providing mortgage capital to lenders. Over the years, Freddie Mac has made home possible for one in six homebuyers and more than five million renters.

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Author’s Yougler Profile is at  Bill Hitchcock.

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