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Mortgage rates fall to record lows

The average for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage falls to 3.62% this week from 3.66% last week, Freddie Mac says. The 15-year fixed rate drops to 2.89% from 2.94%.

July 06, 2012|By E. Scott Reckard, Los Angeles Times

Fixed-rate mortgages dropped to record lows again this week, with lenders offering the 30-year loan at an average of 3.62%, according to housing finance giant Freddie Mac.

That was down from the previous record low of 3.66%, set during the last two weeks. Freddie Mac, which has been conducting the weekly survey since 1971, said the 30-year loan has hit or matched a record low in 10 of the last 11 weeks.

Lenders were offering the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage at 2.89% this week, down from 2.94% a week ago and also a record low.

The starting interest rates for adjustable-rate mortgages also were at or near record lows this week, Freddie Mac said.

Freddie Mac said borrowers would have paid on average 0.8% of the loan amount to the lenders to obtain the 30-year loan at the record low rate and 0.7% of the amount on the 15-year loan.

Freddie Mac surveys lenders across the nation early each week. It asks about the terms they are offering on loans of as much as $417,000 to borrowers with good credit and 20% down payments for home purchases or at least that much equity in their property if they are refinancing.

Borrowers in such circumstances often can find slightly better rates if they shop around. And they also can obtain lower rates by making additional payments known as discount points to their lenders.

scott.reckard@latimes.com

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