Mortgage rates dip to ideal refinancing levels, according to MBA

Mortgage rates declined to more preferable levels for homeowners looking to refinance their homes as they attempted to get out of debt, according to the latest Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey released by the Mortgage Bankers Association.

For the week ending February 26, the average interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased by 0.08 percentage points to 4.95 percent. The decline knocked the average rate back below 5 percent and mostly offset the 0.09 point increase seen one week earlier.

The average rate for 15-year FRMs declined as well, also shedding 0.08 percentage points to 4.27 percent. The rate was the lowest point the 15-year FRM has been since the week ending November 27, 2009 and more than cancelled out a 0.02 point increase seen the week prior.

“Mortgage applications rebounded last week, particularly [refinances], as rates dropped back below 5 percent,” said Michael Fratantoni, MBA’s vice president of Research and Economics. “Purchase activity remains subdued, with application volumes remaining within the narrow range seen in the last few months.”

Overall, the volume of mortgage loan application increased by 14.6 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier. Of those, mortgage refinance requests shot up 17.2 percent while purchase applications increased by 9 percent from one week earlier.