After seeing mortgage rates increase in the first quarter of 2021, homeowners and buyers that are in the process of seeking mortgage loans were excited to see mortgage rates drop to the lowest levels seen in the past month.
After a long and challenging year created by the pandemic, many potential home buyers are wondering if the available residential real estate inventory will increase as the pandemic subsides, or will it continue to decrease as it did this past year.
According to reports from the National Association of Realtors (NAR), millennials represent 37 percent of all homebuyers this past year, and have made up the largest share of homebuyers for 8 consecutive years. Another interesting fact from the NAR is that many of the homes being purchased are considered multigenerational homes that will house adult siblings, adult children, parents, or grandparents.
Homeowners took advantage of February’s mortgage refinance interest rates below 3% with a resyktubg 68% of all mortgage loans being refinance loans. Although rates have slowly increased in March, the refinance activity is still very high.
Mortgage interest rate volatility continued in February with many lenders quoting interest rates higher than just a couple weeks earlier. Many home buyers and those seeking mortgage refinance are expressing concern about how high mortgage rates may increase this year.
MortgageNewsDaily.com reports that according to Ice Mortgage Technology (formerly Ellie Mae), in their Loan Origination Report for January, “closed loans continued to show declining note rates in January, dropping from an average of 2.93 percent in December to 2.88 percent” and also includes “Interest rates continued to decline in January, driving up the share of refinances by seven percent,”
Mortgage interest rates have begun to rise, and as a result January saw the first decrease in mortgage refinance volume since November 2020. The long running record of historically low rates may be news of the past after several weeks of rising rates.
Home sales were strong throughout 2020, with purchase applications up 42% in December 2020 compared to same period in 2019. These results are much better than many projected in early 2020, when the Covid Pandemic brought our nation to a standstill for months. The historically low mortgage interest rates in 2020 is the clear reason for the stellar home sales market performance.