Mortgage interest rates on the 15-year and 30-year mortgages are down from last week, Freddie Mac reported.

“The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage decreased again this week, with declines totaling almost a quarter of a percent in two weeks’ time,” Freddie Mac Chief Economist Sam Khater said.

For 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages, the average interest rate was 6.74% this week, a decent drop from last week when rates averaged 6.88%. Rates aren’t down quite as much as last year when they were 6.6%, on average.

Additionally, 15-year mortgages averaged 6.16%, down slightly from last week when they averaged 6.22%. These mortgages also aren’t as low as last year when they averaged 5.9%.

“Despite the recent dip, mortgage rates remain high as the market contends with the pressure of sticky inflation,” Khater said. “In this environment, there is a good possibility that rates will stay higher for a longer period of time.”

If you want to take advantage of lowering interest rates, consider using Credible to help you easily compare interest rates from multiple lenders in minutes.


Spring likely to bring higher home prices

Warmer weather tends to bring a booming housing market as more homebuyers start looking for homes and inventory grows.

Sellers who list their homes in the spring and summer months often make more money when their home sells because the market is more competitive. A Zillow study found that June was the most profitable month for sellers. Homes listed in the first half of June sold for 2.3% more, on average, putting about $7,700 more in the pocket of sellers.

Location matters when it comes to selling power. In San Francisco, the best time to list is the second half of February, but the first half of July is the best time to sell in New York and Philadelphia.

Certain locations also boast even higher profits during warmer months. During the hottest time of the year, homes in San Jose sold for 5.5% more, boosting profits by $88,000 on an average home, according to Zillow. However, homes in San Antonio sold for just 1.9% more during the same time frame.

“Most sellers don’t have the luxury of timing the market,” Zillow Chief Economist Skylar Olsen said. “The best time to list is when it makes the most sense for their lives.” 

“Regardless of the month, sellers who list their home for sale this spring can expect plenty of interest if their home is marketed and priced right.,” she contined. “That’s why it’s more important than ever to hire a real estate agent with the experience to localize your strategy when comparable sales might be further afield.”

If you’re looking to compete with other buyers this spring, you can explore your mortgage options by visiting Credible to compare rates and lenders and get a mortgage preapproval letter in minutes.


To afford homes, buyers need higher incomes than they did a few years ago

Buyers are facing a tougher market than they did a few years ago. To comfortably afford a home, buyers need to make more than $106,000 annually, another Zillow study showed. This income requirement is 80% higher than in 2020.

Monthly mortgage payments are higher than ever and have doubled since 2020. Payments average $2,188, assuming the buyer puts 10% down. With such high prices, affordability has become a major issue. In 2020, households earning $59,000 annually could afford the median-priced home without spending more than 30% of their income.

The $106,000 income needed today is well above the average household income in the U.S. The average household earns about $81,000.

Some areas are more affordable than others and require a much lower income to afford the average-priced home. Pittsburgh buyers need to earn just $58,232 to afford the average home. Memphis residents need $69,976 and Cleveland residents need $70,810.

Costlier cities like San Jose and San Francisco require much more in annual income to afford a home. San Jose requires an average annual income of $454,296 while San Francisco requires $339,864, according to Zillow.

To see if you qualify for a mortgage based on your current credit score and salary, consider using Credible, where you can compare multiple mortgage lenders at once.


Have a finance-related question, but don’t know who to ask? Email The Credible Money Expert at [email protected] and your question might be answered by Credible in our Money Expert column.


Apache is functioning normally

Mortgage rates surged at a pace seen only one other time since October 2022.  The average lender moved up by 0.28%, which is functionally equivalent to the 0.29% seen after the February 2nd jobs report.  In fact, today was arguably worse because the Feb 2nd example happened a day after rates hit long-term lows.  The implication is that the jump would not have been as big in early Feb if rates weren’t undergoing a correction from those lows.

Hair splitting aside, there just aren’t many past examples of rates rising more than a quarter point in a day. Before covid, it had happened one other time in the past decade.

Translation: it was a rough day for rates.  But why?

We’ve been rather incessantly focused on the risks associated with today’s Consumer Price Index (CPI) in the days and weeks leading up to its release.  It ended up exceeding the hype by showing that inflation refuses to head to the lower levels required for a lower interest rate environment.  Today is really that simple.

Rates are highly dependent on inflation data at the moment.  We’ll get another inflation report tomorrow, but it never operates on the same scale of relevance to rates as CPI.  That’s not to say a friendly result wouldn’t help, but the data stands an equal chance to be unfriendly, thus compounding today’s problems as opposed to taking the edge off.

We’ll talk more about longer-term, bigger-picture implications on Friday.


Apache is functioning normally

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April 10, 2024 at 7:50 AM
Daily mortgage rates for Wednesday, April 10, 2024 (Virojt Changyencham via Getty Images)

As economists await the release of this morning’s key Consumer Price Index inflation data, mortgage rates are up, with the 30-year fixed purchase rate hovering above 7% as of Wednesday, April 10, 2024.

The current average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is 7.02% for purchase and 6.97% for refinance — up 10 basis points from 6.92% for purchase and up 4 basis points from 6.93% for refinance last Wednesday. Rates on a 15-year mortgage stand at an average 6.44% for purchase and 6.48% for refinance. The average rate on a 30-year fixed jumbo mortgage is 7.20%, up 24 basis points from last week.

Purchase rates for Wednesday, April 10, 2024

  • 30-year fixed rate — 7.02%

  • 20-year fixed rate — 6.81%

  • 15-year fixed rate — 6.44%

  • 10-year fixed rate — 6.37%

  • 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage — 6.60%

  • 30-year fixed FHA rate — 6.77%

  • 30-year fixed VA rate — 7.09%

  • 30-year fixed jumbo rate — 7.20%

Refinance rates for Wednesday, April 10, 2024

  • 30-year fixed rate — 6.97%

  • 20-year fixed rate — 6.81%

  • 15-year fixed rate — 6.48%

  • 10-year fixed rate — 6.37%

  • 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage — 6.42%

  • 30-year fixed FHA rate — 6.93%

  • 30-year fixed VA rate — 7.81%

  • 30-year fixed jumbo rate — 7.12%

Freddie Mac weekly mortgage report

Freddie Mac reports an average 6.82% for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, up three basis points from last week, according to its weekly survey of nationwide lenders published on April 4, 2024. The fixed rate for a 15-year mortgage is 6.06%, down five basis points from last week.

Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist, says of the report, “While incoming economic signals indicate lower rates of inflation, we do not expect rates will decrease meaningfully in the near-term. On the plus side, inventory is improving somewhat, which should help temper home price growth.”

Current mortgage rates for April 10, 2024

The Fed rate does not determine mortgage rates, though it sets benchmarks that indirectly affect rates on financial products like mortgages, personal loans and deposit accounts. The Fed has a firm goal of a 2% inflation rate, and with favorable economic reports on the job market, it’s unlikely the reserve will cut rates until that goal is within reality’s reach.

Mortgage rates in the news

Mortgage lenders keep a close eye on the key interest rate set by the Federal Reserve, the U.S.’s central bank. Called the fed rate, it’s the benchmark that affects rates on deposit accounts, loans and other financial products. Typically, as the Fed rate rises, so do APYs on savings products like CDs, high-yield savings accounts and money market accounts. Mortgage and home loan rates don’t follow the fed rate as closely, but they do reflect the same elements the Fed evaluates when making decisions on the benchmark — especially inflation.

Key inflation report due today

The Federal Reserve increased the target interest rate 11 times from March 2022 to July 2023 in an effort to combat the highest inflation in four decades coming out of the pandemic.

Economists are awaiting the release of today’s Consumer Price Index data, which will answer whether inflation is continuing to cool. February’s Consumer Price Index data released on March 12 showed a month-over-month increase in consumer prices — a widely used indicator for inflation. The new data makes for an interesting week, what with the latest Producer Price Index due for release tomorrow.

Federal benchmark: Summer rate cut now in question

At the conclusion of its rate-setting policy meeting on March 20, 2024, the Fed left the federal funds target interest rate of 5.25% to 5.50% unchanged, marking the fifth consecutive time it’s held rates steady since July 2023. In its post-meeting statement, the Federal Reserve maintained it wouldn’t cut the key interest rate until it’s confident “that inflation is moving sustainably toward 2 percent.”

While bankers forecast three rate cuts by the end of the year, a growing group of economists now doubt whether the Fed will cut interest rates this year — including Minneapolis Fed president Neel Kashkari, who told Pensions & Investments last week, “If we continue to see inflation moving sideways, then that would make me question whether we need to do those rate cuts at all.”

Government agency Freddie Mac released its March 20 economic outlook on the housing and mortgage market that predicts mortgage rates to stay at 6.5% or higher through the summer.

NAR settlement could change homebuying

The summer homebuying season could bring with it a major change in the way Americans buy and sell homes. On March 15, the National Association of Realtors announced it had agreed to a settlement that, if approved by a federal judge, would bring an end to longstanding real estate broker commissions of up to 6% of a home’s purchase price. The settlement isn’t expected to affect mortgage rates, yet it paves the way for consumers to negotiate what they pay for an agent’s services, potentially saving homebuyers money in the long run — just in time for summer home sales.

4 top factors that affect your mortgage rate

The difference of even half a percentage point on your interest rate can save you hundreds of dollars a month and thousands of dollars over the life of your mortgage, but the mortgage rate you’re ultimately offered depends on the mortgage you’re interested in, payments you’re willing to pay up front and your overall financial health.

  • Your credit score. Knowing your credit score can help you shop around for lenders you’re likely to get approval through, as well as understand the type of mortgage for your lifestyle and income. The best mortgage rates go to borrowers with good to excellent credit — typically a FICO credit score of at least 670 — though even with fair credit, you may be able to find a mortgage offering decent rates.

  • Your down payment. The more money you can put down toward your home, the better it benefits your interest rate. Paying at least 20% of your home’s purchase price up front generally results in a lower interest rate — and you can avoid mortgage insurance, which increases your total cost.

  • Your loan term. While the 30-year mortgage remains a popular way for Americans to purchase homes, you can find terms of 20 years, 15 years and 10 years. Shorter loan terms usually come with lower interest rates, though with higher monthly payments. Longer mortgage terms can result in smaller monthly payments, though you’ll pay higher total interest over the life of your loan.

  • Interest rate type. Mortgage rates come with two basic types of rates — fixed and variable. Fixed-rate mortgages offer a consistent interest rate over the life of your loan, whereas adjustable-rate mortgages (ARMs) often start with a lower fixed rate for an agreed-on time and then adjust to a variable rate based on market conditions for the remainder of your term. Choosing between these two rates depends on your financial goals and tolerance for risk.

Frequently asked questions about mortgage rates

What are mortgage lenders?

Lenders are financial institutions that loan money to homebuyers. A lender is different from a loan servicer, which typically handles the operational tasks of your loan, like processing payments, talking directly with borrowers and sending monthly statements.

What does it mean to refinance a mortgage?

Refinancing is a process of trading in your current mortgage to another lender for lower rates and better terms than your current loan. With a refinance, the new lender pays off your old mortgage and you then pay your monthly statements from the new lender.

What factors influence mortgage rates?

Mortgage rates are determined by many factors that include inflation rates, economic conditions, housing market trends and the Federal Reserve’s target interest rate. Lenders also consider your personal credit score, the amount available for your down payment, the property you’re interested in and other terms of the loan you’re requesting, like 30-year or 15-year offers.

When is the best time to lock in a mortgage rate?

Mortgage rates can fluctuate daily, so it’s best to lock in a rate when you’re comfortable with the offered rate and conditions of the loan.

Can I negotiate my mortgage rate?

It’s not likely — lenders consider the market conditions and other financial factors when determining rates. You can, however, ask about how you can reduce costs in other ways when comparing mortgage lenders. For instance, many lenders offer lower rates in exchange for “mortgage points” — upfront fees you pay to your lender. A mortgage point could cost 1% of your mortgage amount, which means about $5,000 on a $500,000 home loan, with each point lowering your interest rate by about 0.25%, depending on your lender and loan.

Editor’s note: Annual percentage yields shown are as of Wednesday, April 10, 2024, at 7:45 a.m. ET. APYs and promotional rates for some products can vary by region and are subject to change.