Posts filed under ‘Freddie Mac’

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week : April 16, 2012

Retail SalesMortgage markets improved last week as a global flight-to-quality continued. With Spain facing questions on its sovereign debt, investors continued to pare exposure to risky assets, sparking demand for the relative safety of U.S. government-backed mortgage-backed bonds.

As a result, conforming and FHA mortgage rates slipped for the third straight week last week. 

According to Freddie Mac’s weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey, the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage available to borrowers in Michigan is down to 3.88% nationwide with an accompanying 0.7 discount points plus “typical” closing costs.

Last week’s reported 3.88 percent rate for the 30-year fixed rate mortgage is within one-tenth of one percent of the lowest, average mortgage rates in Freddie Mac survey history. However, the last time conforming rates were reported in this range, the accompanying, required discount points were higher than last week’s 0.7.

Meanwhile, at 3.11% nationwide with 0.7 discount points plus closing costs, the 15-year fixed rate mortgage rate is equally low. It, too, set a record last week.

It’s a good time to be looking for a mortgage in Lansing. Rates and fees are great.

Last week, markets moved on momentum. This week, they’ll move on data. The economic calendar is busy.

  • Monday : Retail Sales; Housing Market Index
  • Tuesday : Housing Starts
  • Thursday : Weekly Jobless Claims; Leading Indicators; Existing Home Sales

In addition, two Federal Reserve members offer prepared remarks Monday. They will be the last public Fed comments before next week’s 2-day FOMC meeting.

Mortgage rates remain low. Consider calling or emailing your loan officer to learn more about your current financing options.

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April 16, 2012 at 8:48 am Leave a comment

Mortgage Rates Fall For Third Straight Week

Freddie Mac Mortgage Rates

After a brief surge north of 4 percent last month, mortgage rates have settled down, near their lowest levels of all-time.  

According to Freddie Mac’s weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey, for applicants willing to pay 0.7 discount points plus a complete set of closing costs, the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage rate fell to 3.88 percent this week.

0.7 discount points adds $700 to your mortgage closing costs for each $100,000 borrowed.

Mortgage rates are down this week on “safe haven” buying. The move is triggered by Wall Street’s concern that Spain and Italy will have trouble servicing their respective sovereign debt. In response, investors are selling risk-heavy assets and using the proceeds to purchase U.S. government-backed bonds.

This creates demand for mortgage bonds which, in turn, pressures mortgage rates lower.

The storyline is similar to what transpired in Greece last year, and, at least for now, it gives Okemos home buyers reason to cheer. So long as economic uncertainty remains, mortgage rates may stay low.

Of course, like all things in real estate, though, mortgage rates are local. Rates offered by banks varied by region.

Freddie Mac’s survey of 125 banks showed the following regional breakdown :

  • Northeast Region : 3.88% with 0.8 discount points 
  • West Region : 3.85% with 0.8 discount points
  • Southeast Region : 3.91% with 0.8 discount points
  • North Central Region : 3.89% with 0.6 discount points
  • Southwest Region : 3.90% with 0.8 discount points

The best mortgage “deals” are currently available to North Central Region residents. The most expensive loans are for those in the Southeast.

Relative to history, though, all mortgage rates look inexpensive. Conforming 30-year fixed rate mortgage rates have never been as low as they are today. It’s a bonus for home buyers because cheap mortgage rate yield cheap mortgage payments. Home affordability remains near all-time highs.  

If you’re unsure of whether now is a good time to buy or refinance, the answer is yes. Talk to your loan officer to review your mortgage options.

April 13, 2012 at 2:14 pm Leave a comment

Mortgage Rates Fall Back Below 4%

Freddie Mac Weekly Mortgage Rates

After a brief run-up two weeks ago, mortgage rates are back below 4 percent. It’s good news for home buyers and mortgage rate shoppers of Okemos because with lower mortgage rates come lower mortgage payments.

According to Freddie Mac’s weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey, the national, average 30-year fixed rate mortgage rate fell to 3.99 percent this week from last week’s 4.08 percent.

Last week had marked the first time since December 2011 that the benchmark rate crossed north of 4 percent — a span of 16 weeks.

And, it wasn’t just rates that got cheaper this week — closing costs dropped, too.

Freddie Mac’s survey showed that the average number of discount points to accompany a 30-year fixed rate mortgage fell one-tenth of a percent this week to 0.7, where one discount point is equal to one percent of your loan size.

As a real-life example, a $200,000 Michigan State University mortgage with an accompanying 0.7 discount points would be subject to an additional $1,400 one-time closing cost. Last week, that cost was $1,600.

Note, though, that these are average mortgage rates for the nation. On a local level, rates may be higher or lower, and so may the accompanying number of discount points.

For example, in this week’s Freddie Mac survey, each U.S. region boasts its own “average rate” :

  • Northeast Region : 4.00% with 0.7 discount points
  • West Region : 3.94% with 0.9 discount points
  • Southeast Region : 4.01% with 0.8 discount points
  • North Central Region : 3.99% with 0.6 discount points
  • Southwest Region : 4.02% with 0.8 discount points

These rates are each well below the average rates of a year ago when the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage was 4.86%. 

Low mortgage rates can’t last forever so if you’ve been wondering whether now is a good time to buy a home or refinance one; or whether rising rates will harm your monthly budget, the answer may be yes. A weak economy held mortgage rates low last year. An improving economy should push rates higher this year.

Talk to your loan officer and review your home loan options. Looking ahead to spring and summer, mortgage rates appear poised to rise.

March 30, 2012 at 8:48 am Leave a comment

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week : March 26, 2012

Housing Starts 2010-2012Mortgage markets carved out a wide range last week, eventually closing slightly worse. Mortgage-backed bonds sold off early in the week on rising investor sentiment. Then, they reversed higher on prepared remarks from Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, which tempered Wall Street optimism.

When bonds prices rise, mortgage rates fall.

Conforming and FHA mortgage rates in Michigan edged higher on the week, and remain at a 5-month high.

According to Freddie Mac’s weekly Primary Mortgage Market Survey, the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage is now 4.08% and the 15-year fixed rate mortgage is now 3.30%. Both loan types require an accompanying 0.8 discount points, plus a full set of closing costs.

1 discount point is equal to one percent of your loan size.

Last week’s conforming mortgage rates represent a sharp increase from the week prior when rates for the 30-year fixed rate mortgage and 15-year fixed rate mortgage averaged 3.92% and 3.16%, respectively.

If you’ve been shopping for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage, the interest rate increase added $9.22 to your monthly payment per $100,000 borrowed.

We can’t know in what direction mortgage rates will move this week, but we can be certain they’ll be volatile. Wall Street is suddenly on edge, unsure of whether the economy is improving as recent data suggests, or if the Federal Reserve is correct in that threats to growth persist.

The week’s data schedule is as follows :

  • Monday : Pending Home Sales Index
  • Tuesday : Consumer Confidence; Case-Shiller Home Price Index
  • Wednesday : Durable Goods
  • Thursday : Initial Jobless Claims; GDP
  • Friday : Personal Income and Outlays

In addition, there are 6 Federal Reserve speakers scheduled for the week, including Chairman Bernanke. Expect mortgage rates to change frequently throughout the week as Wall Street wrestles with data and rhetoric.

Although mortgage rates spiked last week, historically, they remain low. If you’re nervous that rates may rise more, consider locking something in.

March 26, 2012 at 9:27 am Leave a comment

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week : February 21, 2012

Gas prices risingMortgage markets worsened last week as the Eurozone moved closer to a bailout agreement with Greece, and the U.S. economy displayed more signs of growth.

In response, mortgage rates climbed last week.

Rate shoppers should not be surprised that rates ticked north. Since mid-2011, weakness in Greece has helped keep mortgage rates low and the same is true for a weak U.S. economy. Wall Street has sought “safe assets” as protection from risk and that’s driven mortgage rates down.

Now, the safe haven buying that served to anchor low rates appears poised to reverse.

Last month, it was shown, consumer spending rose to record levels and the housing market surpassed analyst expectation again. Homebuilder confidence is now at a 4-year high and Single-Family Housing Starts topped one-half million units for the second straight month.

Conforming mortgage rates in Michigan rose for the first time in a month last week. Unfortunately, few shoppers knew because Freddie Mac’s weekly mortgage rate survey failed to capture the change. The survey deadline was Tuesday. Rates started rising Wednesday morning.

Freddie Mac’s weekly mortgage rate survey put the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage unchanged at 3.87% for borrowers willing to pay 0.8 discount points plus a full set of closing costs.

Rates are higher today.

Beyond Greece and the U.S. economy, inflation is another reason mortgage rates are up. Inflation is the enemy of mortgage rates and, an on annual basis, the core Consumer Price Index registered 2.3% — it’s highest reading since 2008. The Fed expects inflation to ease later this year but if gas prices stay high, the Fed’s forecast may be wrong.

This week is holiday-shortened. Look for Greece to dominate headlines (again) and watch for housing data toward the end of the week. Existing Home Sales is released Wednesday. New Home Sales is released Friday.

For now, mortgage rates remain low. It’s a safe time to lock a long-term rate.

February 21, 2012 at 10:29 am Leave a comment

What’s Ahead For Mortgage Rates This Week : February 21, 2012

Gas prices risingMortgage markets worsened last week as the Eurozone moved closer to a bailout agreement with Greece, and the U.S. economy displayed more signs of growth.

In response, mortgage rates climbed last week.

Rate shoppers should not be surprised that rates ticked north. Since mid-2011, weakness in Greece has helped keep mortgage rates low and the same is true for a weak U.S. economy. Wall Street has sought “safe assets” as protection from risk and that’s driven mortgage rates down.

Now, the safe haven buying that served to anchor low rates appears poised to reverse.

Last month, it was shown, consumer spending rose to record levels and the housing market surpassed analyst expectation again. Homebuilder confidence is now at a 4-year high and Single-Family Housing Starts topped one-half million units for the second straight month.

Conforming mortgage rates in Michigan rose for the first time in a month last week. Unfortunately, few shoppers knew because Freddie Mac’s weekly mortgage rate survey failed to capture the change. The survey deadline was Tuesday. Rates started rising Wednesday morning.

Freddie Mac’s weekly mortgage rate survey put the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage unchanged at 3.87% for borrowers willing to pay 0.8 discount points plus a full set of closing costs.

Rates are higher today.

Beyond Greece and the U.S. economy, inflation is another reason mortgage rates are up. Inflation is the enemy of mortgage rates and, an on annual basis, the core Consumer Price Index registered 2.3% — it’s highest reading since 2008. The Fed expects inflation to ease later this year but if gas prices stay high, the Fed’s forecast may be wrong.

This week is holiday-shortened. Look for Greece to dominate headlines (again) and watch for housing data toward the end of the week. Existing Home Sales is released Wednesday. New Home Sales is released Friday.

For now, mortgage rates remain low. It’s a safe time to lock a long-term rate.

February 21, 2012 at 10:26 am Leave a comment

Lock An Instant 13% Savings On Your Monthly Mortgage Payment

Mortgage payments down 13%

Falling mortgage rates make owning a home more affordable. Mortgage rates are directly tied to monthly mortgage payment so as mortgage rates drop, so does the cost of home-ownership.  

It’s a money-saving time to buy a home in Lansing — or to refinance one. Mortgage rates have never been this low in history.

According to Freddie Mac, last week, the average 30-year fixed rate mortgage fell to 3.87% nationwide for borrowers willing to pay an accompanying 0.8 discount points plus closing costs. 0.8 discount points is a one-time closing cost equal to 0.8 percent of your loan size, or $800 per $100,000 borrowed.

This represents an incredible value as compared to February of last year. 

It was exactly one year ago that mortgage rates begin their long slide lower. On February 11, 2011, the 30-year fixed rate mortgage reached its peak for the year, reading 5.05% in Freddie Mac’s nationwide survey. If you are among the many U.S. households that bought or refinanced a home around that time, you could choose to replace your current home loan with a new one and save close to 13% on your monthly mortgage payment.

13 percent saved on your mortgage is a noteworthy statistic.

Look at this 30-year fixed rate mortgage payment comparison over the last 12 months :

  • February 2011 : $539.88 principal + interest per $100,000 borrowed
  • February 2012 : $469.95 principal + interest per $100,000 borrowed

Because of falling mortgage rates, a homeowner with a $250,000 30-year fixed rate mortgage would save at least $175 per month just by refinancing into a new loan at today’s mortgage rates. That’s $2,100 in savings per year. 

Even after accounting for discount points and closing costs, the “break-even point” on a mortgage like that can come relatively quickly.

We can’t predict mortgage rates so there’s no promise rates will stay like this forever. If you’re planning to buy a home or refinance one, the best way to keep your monthly payments down is to lock your rate while rates are still low.

The market looks ripe for that now. 

February 7, 2012 at 9:47 am Leave a comment

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Don Grimes

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Don Grimes
"Your Residential Mortgage Specialists"
Senior Mortgage Loan Officer
NMLS: #130686

Michigan Mutual, Inc
Office: (517) 507-0151
Toll Free: (800) 521-1642
Mobile: (517) 927-8110
don@DonGrimes.com
www.DonGrimes.com

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