Mortgage application activity declines as interest rates top 5%

Register now

Mortgage applications fell last week as rates for the 30-year fixed conforming loan topped 5% for the first time since 2011, the Mortgage Bankers Association reported.

The MBA's Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey for the week ending Oct. 5 found that activity fell by 1.7% from the previous week.

Consumers' negative perceptions for entering the housing market are being driven by rising interest rates, a recent Fannie Mae study found.

Refinance application volume fell by 3% and the share decreased to 39% of total applications from 39.4% the previous week.

The seasonally adjusted purchase index decreased 1% from one week earlier, while the unadjusted purchase index decreased 1% compared with the previous week and was 2% higher than the same week one year ago.

Adjustable-rate loan activity increased to 7.3% from 7.1% of total applications, while the share of Federal Housing Administration-guaranteed loans increased to 10.5% from 10.2% the week prior.

The share of applications for Veterans Affairs-guaranteed loans remained unchanged at 10% and the U.S. Department of Agriculture/Rural Development share of total applications increased to 0.8% from 0.7% the week prior.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($453,100 or less) increased 9 basis points to 5.05%. This is the highest point since February 2011.

For 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances (greater than $453,100), the average contract rate increased 6 basis points to 4.99%, the highest since July 2011.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA increased 3 basis points to 4.98%, the highest since April 2011. For 15-year fixed-rate mortgages the average reached its highest since April 2010, with a 5 basis points increase to 4.44%.

The average contract interest rate for 5/1 ARMs increased to its highest level since the series began in 2011, 4.29%, from 4.24%.

For reprint and licensing requests for this article, click here.
Mortgage applications Purchase Refinance Interest rates Mortgage rates Mortgage Bankers Association FHA The VA