As Rates Rise Slightly, Purchase Volume Begins to Increase

Mortgage rates ticked up slightly in the past week, but it appears that purchase money loans are picking up as well.

According to figures compiled by Freddie Mac, lenders were offering 30-year fixed-rate loans at 3.34%, a two basis point increase from the week prior. The rate on 15-year loans increased by 3 bps for the week ending Dec. 6, the GSE reported.

Refinancings are holding steady, but “have leveled off a little bit,” said John Walsh, president of the Connecticut-based Total Mortgage Services. Walsh noted that rates have been in a narrow range for “quite some time.”

The CEO added that the purchase money business is “definitely starting to see a pickup, even for December.”

In an interview earlier in the week, MortgageMarvel chief operating officer Rick Allen also said there has been a pickup in purchase volume, but said refinancings remain strong.

“The refinance market is very robust,” said Allen. “We’re seeing a record number of transactions.”

Meanwhile, Freddie Mac reported that 30-year loans are being offered with an upfront fee of 0.7 of a point, 15-year mortgages at 0.6 of a point.

The average rate for a five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid was 2.69% with 0.6 of a point, down three basis points from the previous week.