A new year has brought good news for the housing industry. The first week reported that the average U.S. fixed rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage averaged at a low 3.72%. The findings were 80 basis points below data reported a week earlier.

George Ratiu, Realtor.com’s chief economist said, “The conventional 30-year loan slid 2 basis points to 3.72% in the first week of 2020. Rates remain about 80 basis points lower than the first week of 2019.”

Ratiu predicts that employment and wage gains will fuel the housing industry. The economy will maintain a moderate growth trajectory this year.

The 15-year FRM also was at a low 3.16% which was down from this time last year’s reportings of 3.99%. The average rate dropped in just one week from 3.19% to 3.16%. The 5-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage also averaged 3.46% which was lower than the 3.98% reported this time last year.

“As mortgage rates remain favorable, buyers are likely to get a head start on the spring shopping season in the first couple of months of this year,” Ratiu said. “A stronger infusion of new homes in affordable price ranges would be a welcome gift for the New Year.”

Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist, believes the rates have maintained around 3.7% for the last couple of months because of ” the combination of improved economic data and market sentiment has led to stability in mortgage rates.”

“The low mortgage rate environment combined with the red-hot labor market is setting the stage for a continued rise in home sales and home prices,” said Sam Khater.

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