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Mortgage Rates on the Rise

Mortgage rates are on the rise and are up again for the sixth consecutive week. Mortgage rates were under 4% for over a year, but are now at 4.14% for a 30-year fixed mortgage. This rate is four-tenths of a percent higher than the same week last month. The 15-year fixed rate mortgage also rose slightly this week, and the 5-year adjustable rate mortgage is at its highest point in a year, topping 3% this week.

The New Mortgage “Low”

It’s not likely that the benchmark 30-year fixed will dip down into the threes again. The time for mortgages rates to be at historic lows has passed. The 4% range is going to be the new norm for the near future. Mortgage rates are strongly tied to the actions of the Federal Reserve. The Fed’s actions kept rates low for months and now speculation of what the Fed may do next is causing rates to rise. They will likely taper off for a while, at least until after the Fed meets next week. As soon as the Fed decides to stop stimulating the economy, rates will shoot up a few percentage points.

Don’t Wait; Mortgage Rates Still Rising

If you’ve been holding out, but are interested in refinancing your mortgage, you should act now. Rates won’t get any lower than this, and are likely to be almost double the current rate by the end of the year. If you feel like you’ve missed the boat on a low interest rate, don’t fret. If you’re currently paying on a 6-7% interest rate, then a rate at 4-4.5% is still a great deal. You may have missed locking into a rate in the low threes, but you’ll still be ahead of the game on your 30-year mortgage if you can drop a couple of percentage points now.

Refinance Help

If you’re currently underwater on your mortgage, look into the government’s Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP). HARP refinances accounted for nearly a quarter of all refinances on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans in the first quarter of this year. The interest rates are going to be higher, but if it can help you keep your home, it’s worth the cost.

HARP refinances accounted for about 22 percent of the nearly 1.4 million refinances on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans that were completed in the first quarter of this year,

Weekly national mortgage survey

Results of Bankrate.com’s June 12, 2013, weekly national survey of large lenders and the effect on monthly payments for a $165,000 loan:
30-year fixed 15-year fixed 5-year ARM
This week’s rate: 4.14% 3.32% 3%
Change from last week: +0.04 +0.04 +0.07
Monthly payment: $801.11 $1,165.03 $695.65
Change from last week: +$3.83 +$3.22 +$6.22

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