Mortgage rates are much lower today compared to last Thursday, or any other day last week.  Despite that fact, major news outlets--even those dedicated to the mortgage and real estate markets--are running some iteration of a headline claiming rates are flat this week.  

The culprit is the weekly mortgage rate survey compiled by Freddie Mac which has been the mortgage world's go-to rate index for decades.  There's nothing wrong with Freddie's data or the quotes it receives from loan originators.  It's just stale.  Because the survey really only covers mortgage rate quotes on the first few days of any given week, any significant movement in the 2nd half of the week can create a significant gap between Freddie's survey conclusion and interest rate reality.  

In terms of actual mortgage lender rate sheets, the average lender is offering rates that are 0.125% lower today versus the end of last week.  Some of that improvement came courtesy of this morning's economic data, which showed a much larger than expected decline in the services sector.  Weak economic data generally helps rates move lower, all other things being equal.

Loan Originator Perspective

Bonds posted robust morning gains on poor economic data this morning, sending rates to levels last seen in early September.  As usual, it takes a few days for lenders' rates to reflect the full gains, but progress is progress.  Tomorrow's NFP jobs report could extend, or end this rally.  I'm locking all loans closing within 30 days, going case/case for those closing before Thanksgiving.  -Ted Rood, Senior Originator

Weak data has helped bonds improve over the last couple days.   Any time rate sheets improve it is wise to consider locking in the gains.   Jobs report hits early tomorrow and it can definitely move rates so risky to float into Friday. -Victor Burek, Churchill Mortgage

Today's Most Prevalent Rates

  • 30YR FIXED -3.625%
  • FHA/VA - 3.375%
  • 15 YEAR FIXED - 3.375% 
  • 5 YEAR ARMS -  3.25-3.75% depending on the lender

Ongoing Lock/Float Considerations 

  • 2019 has been the best year for mortgage rates since 2011.  Big, long-lasting improvements such as this one are increasingly susceptible to bounces/corrections and as of September, it looks like such a correction is underway

  • Fed policy and the US/China trade war have been key players.  Major updates on either front could cause a volatile reaction in rates

  • The Fed and the bond market (which dictates rates) will be watching economic data closely, both at home and abroad, as well as trade war updates. The stronger the data and trade relations, the more rates could rise, while weaker data and trade wars will lead to new long-term lows.  
  • Rates discussed refer to the most frequently-quoted, conforming, conventional 30yr fixed rate for top tier borrowers among average to well-priced lenders.  The rates generally assume little-to-no origination or discount except as noted when applicable.  Rates appearing on this page are "effective rates" that take day-to-day changes in upfront costs into consideration.