For the week ending Jan. 21, the 30-year fixed mortgage rate averaged 4.99% with an average 0.7 point, down seven basis points from last week, Freddie Mac reported. 

This is the third straight week of easing following a near-term peak of 5.14% at the end of 2009.

For other mortgage loan terms, 15-year fixed mortgage and 5/1 hybrid ARM rates fell five basis points to a respective 4.40% and 4.27%, while one-year ARM rates reported at 4.32% compared to 4.39% previously.

The no-point mortgage rate remains above 5% at around 5.17%, which will keep refinancing response muted even as mortgage rates are historically attractive. 

A significant response is not expected unless mortgage rates drop to the 4.5% area. Current mortgage rate outlooks, however, predict steady increases on a quarterly basis with rates reaching 6% and higher sometime in the second half of the year. 


 

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