Mortgage rates were unchanged yet again today. Given that rates are based on trading levels in underlying bond markets, it's no surprise to learn that bond investors have been hesitant to take things too far in either direction after pulling up slightly from the long-term lows achieved in early January. The same could be said for the stock market, but replace early January with late December.
For either side of the market, the biggest lingering uncertainty is the fate of the government shutdown. The extent to which a shutdown resolution would move markets remains to be seen. But at the very least, there's a risk that a resolution would push stocks and interest rates higher in unison--at least temporarily.
From there, it would fall to actual economic data to set the tone. In that regard, bonds have a better chance of encountering good news. They simply may have to endure a temporary spike between now and then. If, on the other hand, the reestablishment of economic reports (many are currently on hold due to the shutdown) proves to be bad news for bonds, we're looking at a solid opportunity to lock in rates that are nearly as low as they've been for roughly 9 months.
Loan Originator Perspective
Bonds were flat yet again today, and remain firmly anchored at current levels. Until something (Shutdown/POTUS/Brexit drama) changes, it appears we're staying put. Since we're near recent rate lows, I'm locking applications closing within 30 days, floating most closing further out. -Ted Rood, Senior Originator
Today's Most Prevalent Rates
- 30YR FIXED - 4.5%
- FHA/VA - 4.25%
- 15 YEAR FIXED - 4.125%
- 5 YEAR ARMS - 4.25%-4.625% depending on the lender
Ongoing Lock/Float Considerations
- Headwinds that had plagued rates for most of the past 2 years are slowly dying down. The rising rate environment could flare up again, and some headwinds remain in effect, but the broader tone has taken a more optimistic shift.
- Highest rates in more than 7 years in Oct/Nov. Lowest rates 8 months by the end of the year.
- This is a bit of a crossroads. We may look back at Oct/Nov and see a long-term ceiling, or we may look back at early December and see a temporary correction before more pain. Either way, it's one of the more hopeful positions we've been in for several years.
- 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.