Real Estate News

End of January shows change in mortgage applications

Published: 06 Feb 2017

Mortgage conditions shifted at the end of 2017's first month, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. In a statement on its most recent "Weekly Survey," released on Feb. 1, the organization said that the adjusted Market Composite Index had declined 3.2 percent since the previous week. While average contract interest rates for some fixed-rate mortgages increased, both the seasonally adjusted Purchase Index and Refinance Index saw a decrease of at least 1 point.

Specifically, both the 15- and 30-year fixed rate mortgages saw some increases, though the latter applies only to loan balances with rates higher than $424,000. But it's also important to note the Federal Housing Administration's application rates, which dropped 1.5 percent within the span of a week.

The survey results show a range of changes affecting various rates, but the source said that these figures only come from more than 75 percent of "retail residential mortgage applications" within the U.S. This stands apart from The National Realtors Association's recent announcement that December concluded "mostly on a high note," as a statement from that source put it. The organization's chief economist said that inventory would be a key concern in 2017.

Back in December 2016, the U.S. Dept. of Housing and Urban Development released its own statement about the past year's residential sales. Using information from sample surveys, HUD said that the entire amount of new homes sold in 2016, 563,000, was more than 12 percent higher than it was in 2015.

HUD also said that the average sales price for new houses in December was approximately $61,500 higher than the median price of a new home within the same month. December 2016 also saw 60,000 fewer new homes sold than in the same month of the previous year.