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Mortgage Rates Tuesday, Feb. 14: Slightly Up; New-Home Mortgages Surge

Feb. 14, 2017
Mortgage Rates, Mortgages
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Thirty-year and 5/1 ARM mortgage rates were up by one basis point today, while 15-year fixed rates didn’t budge for the third consecutive day, according to a NerdWallet survey of mortgage rates published by national lenders Tuesday morning.


(Change from 2/13)
30-year fixed: 4.41% APR (+0.01)
15-year fixed: 3.71% APR (NC)
5/1 ARM: 3.83% APR (+0.01)


New-home mortgage applications start year off strong

Home buyers are increasingly turning to newly built homes. New-home mortgage applications surged 22% in January from December 2016, while January 2017 applications jumped by 9.2% compared with January 2016, according to data from the Mortgage Bankers Association Builder Application Survey.

What’s more: January new-home sales jumped 25.7%, to 44,000 from 35,000 sales in December, the survey found.

“As house prices continue to rise and inventories of homes available for sale remain low, it is not surprising that mortgage applications for new homes in January came in higher than a year ago,” Lynn Fisher, MBA’s vice president of research and economics, said in a news release. “Alongside relatively low supply, rising household incomes and favorable demographics should continue to bolster demand for new homes, despite rising interest rates, leading to modest growth in new-home sales this year.”

Conventional loans comprised the lion’s share of new-home mortgage applications in January, with 67.2%. FHA loans accounted for 18.6%, VA loans made up 13% and USDA loans were 1.1%, the MBA said.

Although both sales and applications for new-home purchases are up, the average loan amount dipped from $331,354 in December to $329,806 in January, according to the survey, which tracks national application volume from mortgage lenders who work with homebuilders.

» MORE: Calculate your monthly mortgage payment

Homeowners looking to lower their mortgage rate can shop for refinance lenders here.

NerdWallet daily mortgage rates are an average of the published annual percentage rate with the lowest points for each loan term offered by a sampling of major national lenders. APR quotes reflect an interest rate plus points, fees and other expenses, providing the most accurate view of the costs a borrower might pay.

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Deborah Kearns is a staff writer at NerdWallet, a personal finance website. Email: [email protected]. Twitter: @debbie_kearns.