Mortgage Activity Increases after Dip in Rates

Per the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) survey through the week ending February 3rd, total mortgage activity increased 7.4% from the previous week and the average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) rate fell one basis point to 6.18%. The FRM rate has fallen around 100 basis points since October of 2022.

The Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, rose by 7.4% on a seasonally adjusted (SA) basis from one week earlier. Purchasing activity increased 3.1%, while refinancing activity increased 17.7% week-over-week.

Purchasing activity has slightly increased as interest rates have fallen for 5 consecutive weeks, but it remains 32.7% lower than one year ago. Refinancing activity continues to remain at lower levels, the refinancing index is down 74.8% from one year ago.

The refinance share of mortgage activity increased from 31.2% to 33.9% over the week, while the adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity decreased to 6.6% from 6.7%. The average loan size for purchases was $428,500 for the first week of February, up from $405,500 over the month of January. The average loan size across all products has increased since December 2022. Many buyers remain priced out by the unaffordability of homes currently available.

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