Ah, the Good Old Days of Mortgage Rates—7 Weeks Ago

Number of the Day

That’s how many weeks it’s been since the average mortgage rate fell, showing the days of record low borrowing costs are getting smaller in the rearview mirror. 

For a while there, it seemed like the cost of borrowing money to buy a house could only go down. But no party lasts forever—and indeed, the average rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage has clearly reversed course and now stands at 3.09%, 44 basis points over the record low of 2.65% reached on Jan. 7, Freddie Mac said Thursday. 

The good news? The pace of increases has slowed. The average rose 24 basis points in just two weeks in February, but has only gone up 12 points in the last three weeks. 

The rock-bottom rates helped propel the residential real estate market during the COVID-19 pandemic, but as the prospects for faster economic growth increase, rates are inching back up. So far, the increases haven’t hurt the enthusiasm of prospective buyers too much. Rates are still very affordable, relatively speaking, keeping buyers interested in a very depleted market, according to Freddie Mac.