Mortgage rates continued their slide as this week’s Freddie Mac lender’s survey saw them dive 10 basis points (1/10 of a percent). After starting 2014 over 4.500%, they have dropped over .250% and are down to 4.230%.
The slide is welcome news to consumers who see lower rates as an opportunity to purchase their home or refinance their existing mortgage. Lower rates translates into more affordable payments or the ability to qualify for a higher mortgage.
Weaker housing data
Freddie Mac chief economist Frank Nothaft summed up why rates have continued to decline, "Mortgage rates fell further this week following the release of weaker housing data. The pending home sales index fell 8.7 percent in December to its lowest level since October 2011. Fixed residential investment negatively contributed to GDP [PDF] in the fourth quarter for the first time since the third quarter of 2010. Also, the Institute for Supply Management reported a significant slowing in growth in the manufacturing industry in December than the market consensus forecast."
The popular 15 year mortgage fell to 3.330%. The Freddie Mac weekly rate survey is the industry standard consumers and housing professionals gauge to determine rate movement. The data is comprised from lenders doing business with Freddie Mac and is published on a weekly basis.