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 3.44 percent based on loans closed in October. There was a decrease of 0.12 from the previous month. In March of 2012, FHFA began calculating interest rates using un-weighted survey data. The complete contract rate series can be found at

The average interest rate on conventional, 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage loans of $417,000 or less decreased 14 basis points to 3.62 in September. 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 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 3.44 percent in October, down 11 basis points from 3.55 percent in September. The effective interest rate, which reflects the amortization of initial fees and charges, was 3.57 percent in October, down 10 basis points from 3.67 percent in September. This report contains no data on adjustable-rate mortgages due to insufficient sample size.

Initial fees and charges were 1.05 percent of the loan balance in October, up 10 basis points from September. Twenty-one percent of the purchase-money mortgage loans originated in September were “no-point” mortgages, down one percent from the share in September. The average term was 27.5 years in October, up 0.1 years from September. The average loan-to-price ratio in October was 75.8 percent, up 0.2 percent from 75.6 percent in September. The average loan amount was $257,400 in October, up $2800 from $254,600 in September.