Mortgage Rates Hold Steady Amid Uncertainties

A graphic of multiple two-dimensional slopes in varying colors, implying the ups and downs of mortgage rates.

© Andriy Onufriyenko - Moment / Getty Images

For the last four consecutive weeks, mortgage rates have generally held stable. But that could soon change, with inflation, action from the Federal Reserve possibly quickening its pace to taper its bond purchases, and other financial activity triggered by the ongoing pandemic all playing a role, economists say.

“Mortgage rates have moved sideways over the last several weeks, fluctuating within a narrow range,” says Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist. “Going forward, the path that rates take will be directly impacted by more information about the omicron variant as it is revealed and the trajectory of the pandemic. In the meantime, rates remain low and stable, even as the nation faces declining housing affordability and low inventory.”

Freddie Mac reports the following national averages with mortgage rates for the week ending Dec. 9:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 3.10%, with an average 0.7 point, dropping from last week’s 3.11% average. Last year at this time, 30-year rates averaged 2.71%.
  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgages: averaged 2.38%, with an average 0.7 point, falling from last week’s 2.39% average. A year ago, 15-year rates averaged 2.26%.
  • 5-year hybrid adjustable-rate mortgages: averaged 2.45%, with an average 0.3 point, falling from last week’s 2.49% average. A year ago, 5-year ARMs averaged 2.79%.

Freddie Mac reports average commitment rates along with points to better reflect the total upfront cost of obtaining the mortgage.