Mortgage demand jumps, rates head lower

Couple discussing the cost of a mortgage | mortgage rate news

How high did demand for mortgages jump?

The Mortgage Bankers Association released its weekly numbers, and showed an impressive shift in the data. Comparing week-over-week data, demand for mortgages has jumped 28% in the last week.

Lenders sited rates coming down and an increase of inventory in the market as the reasons for the sudden surge in demand. Senior vice president and chief economist for the MBA, Mike Fratantoni said, “As we enter the beginning of the spring buying season, lower mortgage rates and more homes on the market will help affordability for first-time homebuyers.”

How did mortgage rates react to fresh data?

Retail sales data and earnings data showed that the U.S. economy is slowing a bit. Retail sales metrics showed a 1.1% decline in December compared to the previous month. Also, November data was revised downward. Normally, a weaker than average holiday season would be cause for concern, but weaker consumer spending is what the Federal Reserve wants to see.

The national average for a 30-year, fixed rate mortgage was at 6.04% by the end of trading, down 0.13% from the previous day.

What are the 10 best markets for 1st time homebuyers in 2023?

Deciding where to buy is almost as big of a challenge as deciding when to buy. The team at researched the best markets for first time home buyers to buy into in 2023.

Senior economist Geroge Ratio said, “Midsized towns with lots of amenities for young people and more affordable homes are great places for first-time homebuyers, especially in 2023.

Topping the list? Portsmouth, VA. Located near Virgina Beach, VA, Portsmouth was highlighted for it’s higher than average percentage of people aged 25-to-34 years old, available inventory, and affordability. The northeast was well represented on the list with one town in New Jersey, a town in Connecticut, a town in New Hampshire, and three towns in New York appearing in the top 10.

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