Volatile swings in mortgage rates continue

After the average rate on a 30-year mortgage fell below 5% for the first time in four months last week, rates jumped sharply this week.

Freddie Mac says a 30-year fix now averages 5.22%. Since the beginning of this year, the average rate on a 30-year fix has ranged from 3.22% to 5.78%.

A year ago, 30-year mortgages averaged 2.87%.

“The 30-year fixed-rate went back up to well over five percent this week, a reminder that recent volatility remains persistent,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist. “Although rates continue to fluctuate, recent data suggest that the housing market is stabilizing as it transitions from the surge of activity during the pandemic to a more balanced market.”

Freddie Mac says supply, the number of homes on the market and owners willing to sell, remains tight. As a consequence, home prices will continue to rise, but at a slower pace for the rest of the summer.

The average rate on a 15-year fix was 4.59% this week, up from 4.26% last week. The average rate on a 5-year adjustable-rate mortgage was 4.43%, up from 4.25% last week.

With a slowdown in buyer demand, lenders are reducing the number of mortgage loan products they are offering particularly adjustable-rate mortgages, cash-out refinancing and investor loans, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.

Jeff Clabaugh

Jeff Clabaugh has spent 20 years covering the Washington region's economy and financial markets for WTOP as part of a partnership with the Washington Business Journal, and officially joined the WTOP newsroom staff in January 2016.

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