Mortgage Rates Unchanged, But Purchase Apps, Refinances Rise

Mortgage Weekly Update

Mortgage rates held steady this week at 3.10%, according to Freddie Mac. It’s welcome news for buyers, especially with murmurings of impending rate hikes.

As Freddie Mac’s chief economist Sam Khater put it, “Despite the noise around the economy, inflation, and monetary policy, mortgage rate volatility has been low. For most of 2021, mortgage rates have stayed within half a percentage point, which is a smaller range than in past years.”

The same can’t be said for mortgage applications, which have vacillated quite a bit across the year. This week, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported a 5% increase in purchase loan applications and a 0.4% uptick in refinances. 

“Purchase activity increased for the third straight week, as housing demand remains robust, even as the housing market approaches the typically slower holiday season,” Joel Kan, MBA’s associate vice president of economic and industry forecasting. “Both conventional and government loan applications increased, and the average loan size for a purchase loan was at $407,200, continuing its ongoing 2021 run of being mostly above $400,000.”

Prior to this week, refinance applications had dipped in seven out of the last eight weeks.

“Borrowers continue to lock in mortgages in anticipation of higher rates in the future,” explains Kan.

More in mortgage & housing news

  • The VA has increased its appraisal fees in some markets to as much as $1,000 due to high demand. It has also increased its timeliness requirements to up to 21 days in some parts of the country. According to the department, the new fees will take effect Dec. 1.
  • According to a new report from Redfin, investors accounted for a whopping 18% of all home sales last quarter — up from 16% in Q2 and 11% a year ago. It amounted to a record-breaking $64 billion in sales.
  • Existing home sales were up 0.8% in October, with the median price increasing 13% over the year. Inventory fell for the month, sliding 0.8% from September and 12% from last year.

This week in mortgage rates

Mortgage rates were a mixed bag this week, rising on some, falling on others, and on 30-year loans, holding out at the 3.10% seen last week.

Here’s how rates looked for each loan type:

Make sure to check back here next week for the latest mortgage rates and news.

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By Aly Yale / November 24th, 2021 / Categories: / Tags:

Aly Yale

Aly J. Yale is a freelance writer focusing on real estate, mortgage, and the housing market. Her work has been featured in Forbes, Bankrate, The Motley Fool, Business Insider, The Balance, and more. Prior to freelancing, she served as an editor and reporter for The Dallas Morning News. She graduated from Texas Christian University's Bob Schieffer College of Communication with a major in radio-TV-film and news-editorial journalism. Connect with her at AlyJYale.com or on Twitter at @AlyJwriter.