The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 3.05% for the week ending Dec. 23, according to the latest data from Freddie Mac.
“The market volatility resulting from the COVID-19 Omicron variant is causing mortgage rates to decrease. As the year comes to a close, the housing market is proceeding steadily. However, rates are expected to increase in 2022 which will impact homebuyer demand as well as refinance activity.” — Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s Chief Economist.
“Investors kept a cautious wait-and-see approach to the omicron variant, as signals point to higher levels of contagion, but lower levels of severe symptoms. In positive news, this week saw an upward revision to third quarter GDP and an increase in existing-home sales, pointing to an active market in a historically slower season.
“As we enter the holiday season and many families look forward to celebrations and a slight respite from another challenging year, real estate markets remain unseasonably lively. Buyers continue to close contracts for both new and existing homes, hurrying to lock in low mortgage rates before they rise.
“The combination of rising inflation and the Federal Reserve’s accelerated tapering of mortgage-backed securities purchases is expected to push interest rates higher in 2022, trimming many buyers’ budgets.” — George Ratiu, realtor.com® Manager of Economic Research