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Mortgage Rates Still Low Wednesday, So Why Aren’t More Homes Selling?

Sept. 20, 2017
Finding the Right Mortgage, Mortgage Rates, Mortgages
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The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage was unchanged, while the 15-year fixed rose two basis points and the 5/1 ARM went up one basis point, according to a NerdWallet survey of daily mortgage rates published by national lenders Wednesday morning.

The 30-year fixed has risen seven basis points in the last week. It’s up 34 basis points compared with one year ago.

However, by historical standards, today’s mortgage rates are very low. One would think that these low mortgage rates would spur home sales, but that doesn’t seem to be happening. Home resales fell 1.7% in August compared with July, according to the National Association of Realtors. The pace of home sales in August was virtually unchanged compared with August 2016. Of the homes sold in August, half had been on the market for less than one month. Compare that against the median time on market a year earlier: 36 days.

“What’s ailing the housing market and continues to weigh on overall sales is the inadequate levels of available inventory and the upward pressure it’s putting on prices in several parts of the country,” Lawrence Yun, NAR chief economist, said in a news release. “Sales have been unable to break out because there are simply not enough homes for sale.”

Yun added that the national decline in sales was partly attributable to the impact of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. He said home sales will be affected the rest of this year and into 2018 because of damage caused by the two hurricanes.


(Change from 9/19)
30-year fixed: 4.01% APR (NC)
15-year fixed: 3.44% APR (+0.02)
5/1 ARM: 3.89% APR (+0.01)

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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