Today, 10/01/09, Freddie Mac reported that the average mortgage interest rate for 30 year fixed-rate mortgages was 4.94% (4.93% in the southeast), down from 5.04% a week ago. The average interest rate for 15 year fixed-rate mortgages was 4.36%, down from 4.46% last week. A year ago the 30 year rate was 6.10%.
The last time the average 30 year fixed-rate interest rates were below 5% was back in May of this year.
A Freddie Mac spokesperson said that the lower interest rates had spurred on home sales. And if you read my post just ahead of this one, that appears to be the case. According to the spokesperson, new home sales in August 2009 were at the highest level since September of 2008. Inventories of unsold homes also fell to the lowest levels since February 1983.
Though the sales of existing homes nationwide fell somewhat in August, it was still one of the strongest showings in the past two years. In addition, home prices rose for the second month in 17 of 20 metropolitan areas. And they were more broad-based.
As I have mentioned before, now my big question is whether or not the federal government will extend and/or expand the $8,000 tax credit into the coming year? I would hate to see things fizzle out and some experts are predicting that will happen. And keeping the credit and widening the segments of the population it helps could do a lot to keep us moving in a positive direction. If you are in the process of buying a home now, you should do everything you can to be certain you make the current end of November deadline for the credit. Otherwise, it will be like getting a lot of coal in your stocking at Christmas. Not a good thing. So do not take chances.
In the meantime, you may want to let your representatives in Washington know how you feel about this credit. You can find your Senators here: www.senate.gov and your Congressman here: www.house.gov E-mail them and let them know your thoughts.
Do keep in mind that we are a very large country. So figures that come out for the entire nation, may have little or no relevance for your particular area. In the end, it is best if you speak with a local REALTOR or financing expert to see what the situation is for your part of the United States. Florida is not Michigan, nor is Maine the same as California. Market conditions can be very different from place-to-place. Also, your own credit history, the property you want to buy, etc. will effect your specific loan options and interest rates. Your mortgage broker or bank loan officer can give you more specific information.
If you want to learn more about Freddie Mac or see the details of their survey, go to: www.freddiemac.com and click on the link for "Current Weekly Survey". They break down the survey by specific regions in the United States so you can see how your state compares to other parts of the country. They also explain the mission of Freddie Mac and offer a lot of useful information for consumers.
If you would like to speak with a lender you can find some at my website: www.jelwell.century21bnr.com . You can also speak with your own bank, credit union, or mortgage broker to see what your particular interest rate would be, should you decide to finance a home purchase.
John Elwell - REALTOR
Bill Nye Realty, Inc.
Licensed in Florida