The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) today reported that the National Average Contract Mortgage Rate for the Purchase of Previously Occupied Homes by Combined Lenders, used as an index in some adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) contracts, was 3.43 percent based on loans closed in February. There was an increase of 0.08 from the previous month.

The average interest rate on conventional, 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage loans of $417,000 or less increased 9 basis points to 3.62 in February. These rates are calculated from the FHFA’s Monthly Interest Rate Survey of purchase-money mortgages (see technical note). These results reflect loans closed during the February 22 – 28 period. Typically, the interest rate is determined 30 to 45 days before the loan is closed. Thus, the reported rates depict market conditions prevailing in mid- to late-January.

The contract rate on the composite of all mortgage loans (fixed- and adjustable-rate) was 3.42 percent in February, up 8 basis points from 3.34 percent in January. The effective interest rate, which reflects the amortization of initial fees and charges, was 3.55 percent in February, up 9 basis points from 3.46 percent in January.

This report contains no data on adjustable-rate mortgages due to insufficient sample size.

Initial fees and charges were 0.99 percent of the loan balance in February, down 4 basis points from January. Twenty percent of the purchase-money mortgage loans originated in February were “no-point” mortgages, up from 26 percent in January. The average term was 27.1 years in February, unchanged from January. The average loan-to-price ratio in February was 77.2 percent, up 0.8 percent from 76.4 percent in January. The average loan amount was $258,700 in February up $4,000 from $254,700 in January.