Personal Finance

Mortgage Rates Are Rising Very Slowly

Mortgage rates continued inching up today on the heels of Monday's minor increases. Most fixed loans rose by 0.02% except for the 15-year fixed refinance rate, which held steady at 3.07%.

The strong housing market helped adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) buck that rate hike trend, with both the 5/1 ARM and 5/1 ARM refinance alternatives dropping a negligible 0.01%. The 5/1 ARM offers borrowers a fixed interest rate for five years, after which it will adjust annually based on the prevailing rates.

Here are today's average mortgage rates across the U.S., along with where they stood a month ago:

Mortgage Type Average Interest Rate Today AverageInterest Rate One Month Ago
30-year fixed jumbo 4.41% 4.54%
30-year fixed 3.87% 4.02%
15-year fixed 3.07% 3.19%
30-year fixed refinance 3.87% 4.04%
15-year fixed refinance 3.07% 3.24%
5/1 ARM 3.10% 3.18%
5/1 ARM refinance 3.26% 3.29%

Data source: Bloomberg. National average rates which may include points.

Today's homebuyers are enjoying some of the lowest mortgage rates in history, despite some recent increases. That said, folks in the market for new homes back in April 2012 were enjoying even better loan deals. Here are the rates from five years ago:

Mortgage Type Mortgage Rates April 2012
30-year fixed 3.91%
15-year fixed 3.14%
1-year ARM 2.78%
5/1 ARM 2.84%

Data source: Freddie Mac. Rates do not include points.

For existing homeowners in the market for either a home equity line of credit (HELOC) or an equity loan, there was little change to report today. The average for HELOCs remained at 5.30%, while equity loan rates declined 0.01% to 5.28%. Both are slightly above last month's respective rates of 5.10% and 5.23%.

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