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Even with 2015 highs, mortgage rates down year-over-year

Posted on Friday, May 29, 2015 at 8:03:55 AM

Residential financing rates have hit a new high for 2015. According to Freddie Mac, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 3.87 percent during the week ending May 28, while the 15-year FRM averaged 3.11 percent in that time.

Both of those rates are up from the previous seven-day period, but there is little reason for potential homebuyers to worry. Freddie Mac noted that these rates were down compared to the same time last year, with the 30-year FRM averaging 4.12 percent and the 15-year FRM averaging 3.21 percent.

"Mortgage rates rose to the highest level in 2015 following positive housing market data," explained Len Kiefer, deputy chief economist at Freddie Mac. "New home sales surged 6.8 percent to an annual pace of 517,000 units in April. Although existing home sales slipped 3.3 percent to a seasonally-adjusted pace of 5.04 million units, sales are up 6.1 percent on a year-over-year basis."

Furthermore, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported that residential financing applications declined in May, now 1.6 percent lower than the previous week. The refinance share of mortgage activity also decreased, down from 52 percent of total mortgage activity to 51 percent. 

Overall, residential financing rates are far from unaffordable, especially when looking at the yearly trend.