Mortgage rates jump to 15-year high

Mortgage rates continue their rapid rise, with the average rate on a 30-year fix hitting the highest level since July 2007 this week.

Freddie Mac says a 30-year mortgage now averages 6.7%. This is the sixth consecutive week that rates have risen. A year ago, 30-year rates averaged 3.01%. Thirty-year rates have risen more than one full percentage point in the past month, and have more than doubled since the first of the year.

A 15-year fixed-rate mortgage is approaching 6% now, averaging 5.96% this week. A year ago, 15-year rates averaged 2.88%. The average rate on a five-year adjustable-rate mortgage rose to 5.3% this week, almost double what it was a year ago.

While average rates are the headlining number, borrowers won’t necessarily face rates that high.

“Our survey indicates that the range of weekly rate quotes for the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage has more than doubled over the last year,” said Freddie Mac chief economist Sam Khater.

“The large dispersion in rates means it has become even more important for homebuyers to shop around with different lenders,” he said.

Higher rates have sidelined buyers and refinancing activity by existing homeowners. These pullbacks mean lenders are competing for fewer borrowers, and are more willing to compete on rates.

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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