Even as mortgage rates continue to plummet to new depths, total applications for home loans decreased 2.1 percent for the week ending July 6, according to weekly data released today by the Mortgage Bankers Association that takes the July 4 holiday into account.
Applications for new mortgages actually increased 3 percent over the week, but refinances, which comprised 77 percent of all activity last week, fell by that same amount, pushing the total application number down. This marks a third consecutive week of declining refinance activity.
The average size of all loans dropped in June; loans for purchases averaged $240,897, down nearly $3,000 from May, while refinances averaged $218,619, down nearly $8,000 since May.
Once again, mortgage rates fell to new lows. Average interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate loan with a conforming balance fell 7 basis points to 3.79, while jumbo loans fell three-hundredths of a percent to 4.5 percent. FHA-backed 30-year fixed-rate loans had an average interest rate of 3.63 percent, down from 3.69 percent. Finally, 15-year fixed-rate loan rates were 3.15 percent, compared to 3.20 percent the previous week. All four rates reached historically low levels. — Adam Fusfeld