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Freddie Mac: Mortgage rates edge up from record lows

June 14, 2012|By E. Scott Reckard
  • Mortgage rates edged back up this week, according to Freddie Mac, whose McLean, Va., headquarters is shown.
Mortgage rates edged back up this week, according to Freddie Mac, whose… (Pablo Martinez Monsivais…)

Fixed mortgage rates ended a six-week string of record lows, with the latest Freddie MacĀ  survey showing lenders were offering 30-year home loans at an average 3.71% this week, up from 3.67% a week earlier.

The low rates and depressed home prices have led borrowers to apply for more home loans than at any time since 2009, according to a Mortgage Bankers Assn. report, amid positive signs for housing markets. Still, nearly four in five applications were for new loans refinancing existing mortgages, not to buy homes.

Freddie Mac said Thursday its survey of lenders showed they were offering 15-year fixed loans at an average of 2.98% early this week, up from 2.94% the previous week. Start rates on adjustable mortgages were slightly lower.

Borrowers would have paid 0.7% of the loan amount in upfront lender fees and discount points to obtain the fixed-rate loans and slightly less for adjustable-rate mortgages, Freddie Mac said.

The home-loan giant, a ward of the government since nearly collapsing during the financial crisis, publishes the longest-running of many mortgage rate surveys. It asks lenders what terms they are offering on loans of up to $417,000 to borrowers with solid credit and 20% down payments or 20% home equity if they are refinancing.

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