Real Estate & Area News

Mortgage Rates Stay Close to 3-Month Lows

US mortgage giant Freddie Mac reported Thursday that mortgage rates rose only slightly this week, remaining close to their lowest levels in three months. According to the report, the average rate for a 30 year, fixed-rate mortgage climbed from last week's average of 4.22 percent to 4.23 percent, while the average rate for a 15-year fixed loan rose from 3.29 percent to 3.31 percent. Despite the increases, both rates are still at their lowest averages since July, Freddie said.

Mortgage rates began climbing during the summer as speculation ramped up as to when the Fed would begin unwinding its bond purchasing program designed to keep long term borrowing rates down. The upward trend slowed, however, in late July, when the central bank declined to begin tapering, and then reversed late last month when the Fed again declined to slow down its bond buying. Rates are also staying low as the result of the ongoing partial government shutdown, which is prompting investors to reduce exposure to stocks and commodities and funnel capital into bonds, driving down their yields. As interest rates track the yield on the 10-year Treasury, the increased demand for the bonds has helped to keep rates lower.

October 10, 2013