MBA: Mortgage applications rebound on lower rates 

by John Yellig

Mortgage applications rose for the first time in two months last week as the 30-year fixed rate saw its largest single-week decline since July.    

Home-loan applications rose 2.7% on a seasonally adjusted, weekly basis during the week ended Nov. 11, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey. 

“Mortgage rates decreased last week as signs of slower inflation pushed Treasury yields lower,” MBA Vice President and Deputy Chief Economist Joel Kan said in a press release. “Application activity, adjusted to account for the Veterans Day holiday, increased in response to the drop in rates — driven by a 4% rise in home-purchase applications. Purchase applications increased for all loan types, and the average purchase loan dipped to its smallest amount since January 2021.” 

The average contract interest rate for conforming 30-year mortgages of $647,200 or less plunged to 6.90% from 7.14%, while the rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA increased to 6.93% from 6.86%.    

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances of more than $647,200 rose to 6.51% from 6.50%, and the average contract interest rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to 6.27% from 6.40%.    

Refinancing activity remained muted, as there is little incentive for homeowners to refinance in the current rate environment, Kan said. The MBA’s refinance index was down 2% from the previous week and 88% from the same week last year. The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 27.6% of total applications from 28.1% the previous week.    

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