Mortgage Apps & Rates Increase to Start the Year

Mortgage applications increased for the first week of January, according to data from the Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey (Mortgage Bankers Association)

Total applications increased 16.7% from one week earlier to start 2021

  • REFIS: The seasonally adjusted Refinance Index increased 20% from the previous week and was 93% higher than the same week one year ago.
  • PURCHASE: The seasonally adjusted Purchase Index increased 8% from one week earlier and on an unadjusted basis purchases were up 10% from the same week one year ago

Refis made up 74.8% of total mortgage applications

The average contract for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage with a conforming loan balance increased slightly to 2.88% up from 2.86% the week before. Intersently enough, the average contract interest rate for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage decreased one basis point to 2.39%

Joel Kan, MBA’s Associate Vice President of Economic and Industry Forecasting, said in a statement, “Booming refinance activity in the first full week of 2021 caused mortgage applications to surge to their highest level since March 2020, despite most mortgage rates in the survey rising last week. The expectation of additional fiscal stimulus from the incoming administration, and the rollout of vaccines improving the outlook, drove Treasury yields and rates higher.”