John's Florida Real Estate Blog


New Lows for Average Mortgage Interest Rates - Now Just 3.79%

Down Arrow - JTEToday, 5/17/2012, Freddie Mac reported that the average mortgage interest rate for 30 year fixed-rate mortgages was 3.79%, down from 3.83% last week. The average interest rate for 15 year fixed-rate mortgages was 3.04%, down from 3.05% from last week. A year ago the 30 year rate was 4.61%. One has to wonder just how low they can drop and, even more importantly, how many of you will be able to lock in these low rates and get that home you have been waiting for. Lower rates not only make it easier to buy a home, but also make it easier to sell one. I hope many of you are able to take advantage of these rates. At some point, they will go up! That is a certainty!

Conditions in Europe caused yields on Treasury bonds to drop and that force a corresponding fall in mortgage rates. Some positive news here in the US was that industtrial production rose 1.1% in April and that was the largest gain since December 2010. And consumer sentiment during our current month of May rose to its highest level since 2008!

Home construction finally took off a bit and in April was at an "annualized rate" of 717,000 units. This was much higher than had been predicted. Home builder confidence also increased as a result.

Just from a personal point of view, it is not a terrible thing that new homes are being built since that creates more employment and more consumers. However, we need to walk a fine line so that we do not add too many homes to a housing market already saturated with normal sales and those of distressed properties, ie short sales and foreclosures. We need at least a little upward pressure on prices to help keep them stable for sellers. But from what we see, these are still good signes that our economy is recovering. Let us all hope it continues!

The job report for April was weaker than expected. Then the economic news out of Europe was not very good since both Greece and France had elections that seemed to run counter to the steps that had been taken to improve their economic situations. Now, who knows what will happen there? Markets don't like uncertainty and bond yields decreased. Mortgage interest rates went in the same direction. At least gas prices seem to be coming down. That will be welcome news for motorists this summer.

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: 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: . 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.

I would also be happy to assist you in any way that I can. Just call JOHN ELWELL - REALTOR at CENTURY 21 Bill Nye Realty, Inc. : 813-783-4444 or e-mail me at: You are also welcome at my webpage:  Licensed in Florida.

John Elwell - REALTOR


Bill Nye Realty, Inc.


Licensed in Florida


Comment balloon 0 commentsJohn Elwell • May 17 2012 12:45PM


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