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Mortgage Activity Increases as Rates Find New Lows

More consumers are applying for a mortgage ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┬Ø on both the refinance and homebuying fronts ├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔé¼┬Ø and taking advantage of extremely low borrowing costs as interest rates plunge to new record-lows on the Federal Reserve├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós pledge of another mortgage-bond-buying spree.


The ""Mortgage Bankers Association"":http://www.mortgagebankers.org (MBA) says its composite measurement of total mortgage application volume rose 2.8 percent last week when compared to the previous week, getting a boost from both refinance and home purchase activity.

MBA├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós Refinance Index increased 3 percent for the week ending September 21 to hit its highest level in six weeks. At the same time, the Purchase Index rose 1 percent.

The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to 81.2 percent of total applications, up slightly from 81.0 percent the week prior. MBA says it├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós the highest refinance share recorded in its weekly survey since early August.


All fixed-rate loan products posted their lowest average rates in the history of MBA├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós survey last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances of $417,500 or less decreased from 3.72 percent to 3.63 percent last week.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances greater than $417,500 dropped to 3.87 percent. The week before, the average 30-year jumbo rate was 3.99 percent.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) decreased to 3.44 percent last week. It fell 6 basis points from 3.50 percent the week before.

The average contract interest rate for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased to 2.98 percent last week, down from 3.03 percent the previous week.

The average contract interest rate for 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) remained unchanged in MBA├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós study at 2.61 percent, matching its survey record-low.

With mortgage rates resuming their fall nearly across-the-board, housing affordability remains extremely high even as home values head higher across much of the country.

""Standard & Poor├â┬ó├óÔÇÜ┬¼├óÔÇ×┬ós reported Tuesday"":https://themreport.com/articles/case-shiller-price-indexes-at-20-month-high-2012-09-25 that both the 10-city and 20-city composite readings of its Case-Shiller home price indices rose in July to their highest levels in more than a year-and-a-half.