The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) averaged 6.32%, its third consecutive week of declines, down from 6.42% the previous week, according to the latest Primary Mortgage Market Survey (PMMS) from Freddie Mac released Thursday.
This week’s numbers:
- 30-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 6.32% as of March 30, 2023, down from last week when it averaged 6.42%. A year ago at this time, the 30-year FRM averaged 4.67%.
- 15-year fixed-rate mortgage averaged 5.56%, down from last week when it averaged 5.68%. A year ago at this time, the 15-year FRM averaged 3.83%.
What the experts are saying:
“Economic uncertainty continues to bring mortgage rates down,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist. “Over the last several weeks, declining rates have brought borrowers back to the market but, as the spring homebuying season gets underway, low inventory remains a key challenge for prospective buyers.”
Realtor.com Economic Research Analyst, Hannah Jones, commented:
“The Freddie Mac fixed rate for a 30-year mortgage slid 0.1%age points to 6.32% this week while 10-year treasury yields climbed back into the 3.5% range. In response to recent bank instability, investors went searching for high land in the bond market, which nudged bond yields lower. However, as the uncertainty in the financial sector waned, investors shifted away from bonds, pushing bond yields back up. Mortgage rates tend to move with the 10-year treasury yield, which ticked up this week, but the spread between the two narrowed as mortgage rates moved down and the market continued to navigate ongoing economic uncertainty.
“As the dust settled after last week’s FOMC meeting, markets adjusted to the short- and long-term implications of higher interest rates and the possibility of stricter lending requirements, along with a possible end to rate hikes on the horizon. These factors create a less hospitable borrowing environment, which would serve to bring inflation closer to a healthy level. More expensive, stricter lending helps to usher in the long-term health of the economy, but the downside is that borrowing for large purchases, including a home purchase, may be relatively more challenging in the short term.
“Potential buyers continue to face elevated mortgage rates and home prices, making buying less accessible than a year ago. However, home prices continue to show signs of softening, a welcomed development for buyers. This week’s rate also creates an opportunity for potential buyers to dive in while rates are slightly lower. Pent-up housing demand is evident with every gain in affordability, whether it be softening prices or lower mortgage rates. As the prime spring buying season takes off and the Best Time to Sell draws near, buyers will be looking for well-priced, ready-to-move-in homes. Spring sellers should start getting their home ready for sale, keeping in mind that it took longer than expected to prep, according to more than half of recent sellers surveyed by Realtor.com.”