Nationally, interest rates on conventional purchase-money mortgages increased from November to December, according to several indices of new mortgage contracts.
The National Average Contract Mortgage Rate for the Purchase of Previously Occupied Homes by Combined Lenders Index was 3.97 percent for loans closed in late November, up 12 basis points from 3.85 percent in November.
The average interest rate on all mortgage loans was 3.96 percent, up 10 basis points from 3.86 in November.
The average interest rate on conventional, 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages of $417,000 or less was 4.20 percent, up 12 basis points from 4.08 in November.
The effective interest rate on all mortgage loans was 4.10 percent in December, up 9 basis points from 4.01 percent in November. The effective interest rate accounts for the addition of initial fees and charges over the life of the mortgage.
The average loan amount for all loans was $318,000 in December, down $1,800 from $319,800 in November.
FHFA will release January index values Thursday, February 25, 2016.
Technical note: The indices are based on a small monthly survey of mortgage lenders, which may not be representative. The sample is not a statistical sample but is rather a convenience sample. Survey respondents were asked to report terms and conditions of all conventional, single-family, fully amortized purchase-money loans closed during the last five working days of the month. Unless otherwise specified, the indices include 15-year mortgages and adjustable-rate mortgages. The indices do not include mortgages guaranteed or insured by either the Federal Housing Administration or the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. The indices also excluded refinancing loans and balloon loans. December 2015 values are based on 3,173 reported loans from 14 lenders, which include savings associations, mortgage companies, commercial banks, and mutual savings banks.