Mortgage Applications Rise After Several Weeks Of Declines

After several weeks of declining applications, homebuyers bounced back into the market.

Mortgage applications increased 2.7% compared with the previous week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA).

Purchase applications drove the gains. Applications to buy a home increased 5% from one week earlier based on the unadjusted Purchase Index and 5% higher than a year ago.

Mortgage rate movements were “mostly unchanged,” according to the MBA’s survey. The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($484,350 or less) slightly decreased 0.01% from last week.   

“We saw a good week for the spring homebuying season as a 5 percent increase in purchase applications – both weekly and year-over-year – drove the results,” said Joel Kan, the MBA’s associate vice president of economic and industry forecasting.

The average loan size to purchase a home also stayed elevated to $335,600 from $332,000, “with government purchase applications rising to the highest in the survey.” Added Kan, “Even with slower price appreciation in higher-priced markets, home prices are still rising enough to push average loan sizes higher.”

The refinance share of applications decreased to 37.9% from 38.8% last week, the lowest level since last November.

Posted on usatoday.com on 5/8/19.