NEW YORK, NY - Mortgage rates posted very modest movement this week, with the benchmark 30-year fixed mortgage rate inching lower to 4.71 percent, according to Bankrate.com's weekly national survey. The average 30-year fixed mortgage has an average of 0.33 discount and origination points.
The average 15-year fixed mortgage nosed higher to 3.75 percent, while the larger jumbo 30-year fixed mortgage rate nudged upward to 4.89 percent. Adjustable rate mortgages were mixed. The 3-year adjustable rate was down to 3.72 percent, the popular 5-year ARM was unchanged at 3.65 percent and the 10-year ARM increased to 4.30 percent.
The rise in mortgage rates in recent months has been in anticipation of the Federal Reserve beginning to slow the pace of their monthly bond purchases. With the moment of truth now close at hand, as the Fed meeting concludes on Sept. 18, it is wait-and-see time for mortgage rates. Whether the Fed tapers this month or not is likely to be a game-time decision, but it is inevitable. If it doesn't happen this month, speculation will immediately begin to swirl about an October start.
As recently as May 1st, the average 30-year fixed mortgage rate was 3.52 percent. At that time, a $200,000 loan would have carried a monthly payment of $900.32. With the average rate currently at 4.71 percent, the monthly payment for the same size loan would be $1,038.48, a difference of $138 per month for anyone that waited too long.
30-year fixed: 4.71% -- down from 4.72% last week (avg. points: 0.33)
15-year fixed: 3.75% -- up from 3.74% last week (avg. points: 0.25)
5/1 ARM: 3.65% -- unchanged from last week (avg. points: 0.24)
Bankrate's national weekly mortgage survey is conducted each Wednesday from data provided by the top 10 banks and thrifts in the top 10 markets.
For a full analysis of this week's move in mortgage rates, go to www.bankrate.com
The survey is complemented by Bankrate's weekly Rate Trend Index, in which a panel of mortgage experts predicts which way the rates are headed over the next seven days. Once again, there is no clear consensus, with 45 percent of respondents expecting mortgage rates to remain more or less unchanged, while 33 percent forecast an increase in the coming week. Just 22 percent predict mortgage rates will pull back in the next week.