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Residential financing rates decline while interest rises

Posted on Monday, April 21, 2014 at 8:56:41 AM

Interest in affordable residential financing is on the rise across the country, thanks in part to declining mortgage rates for several of the most popular options.

According to Freddie Mac, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 4.27 percent for the week ending April 17, down from the week prior when it averaged 4.34 percent. A similar decline was experienced with the 15-year FRM, down to 3.33 percent from 3.38 percent.

"Mortgage rates continued to ease this week as housing starts rose 2.8 percent in March but not as much as expected," said Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist at Freddie Mac. "Also, permits fell 2.4 percent in March to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 990,000, which followed a slight downward revision of 4,000 permits in February."

In addition to that trend, interest in residential financing has also been climbing up. According to the Mortgage Bankers Association, mortgage applications ticked up 4.3 percent for the week ending April 11. The refinance share of all mortgage activity also increased slightly, now at 52 percent of total applications. The adjustable-rate mortgage share remained unchanged week-over-week.