The Federal Housing Finance Agency 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 ARM contracts, was 4.19 percent based on loans closed in October. This is a decrease of 0.19 percent from the previous month.

The average interest rate on conventional, 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage loans of $417,000 or less decreased 20 basis points to 4.36 percent in October. These rates are calculated from the FHFA’s Monthly Interest Rate Survey of purchase-money mortgages. These results reflect loans closed during the October 25-31 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-September.

The contract rate on the composite of all mortgage loans (fixed- and adjustable-rate) was 4.17 percent in October, down 19 basis points from 4.36 percent in September. The effective interest rate, which reflects the amortization of initial fees and charges, was 4.29 percent in October, down 20 basis points from 4.49 percent in September.

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

Initial fees and charges were 0.83 percent of the loan balance in October, down 0.11 percent from 0.94 in September. Twenty-eight percent of the purchase-money mortgage loans originated in October were “no-point” mortgages, down one percent from the share in September. The average term was 28.7 years in October, down 0.3 years from 29.0 years in September. The average loan-to-price ratio in October was 78.4 percent, up 0.1 percent from 78.3 percent in September. The average loan amount was $218,500 in October, down $2,200 from $220,700 in September.