Mortgage Applications Decreased Despite Dip in Rates


Mortgage application volume fell 2.5% on an adjusted basis during the week ended April 23, despite a slight drop in mortgage interest rates, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Weekly Applications Survey.

Applications for refinances fell 1% compared with the previous week while applications for purchases fell 5%.

Year-over-year, applications for refinances were down 18% while applications for purchases were up 34%.

The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage based on closings was 3.17%, down from 3.20% the previous week.

“Mortgage applications decreased last week, even as mortgage rates dropped for the third week in a row,” says Joel Kan, associate vice president of economic and industry forecasting for the MBA, in a statement. “The 30-year fixed rate was down 3 basis points to 3.17 percent, which is still 32 basis points higher than the low reported in December 2020.

“Even with a few weeks of lower rates, most borrowers have likely already refinanced, which is why activity has decreased in seven of the last eight weeks,” Kan says. “The purchase market’s recent slide comes despite a strengthening economy and labor market. Activity is still above year-ago levels, but accelerating home-price growth and low inventory has led to a decline in purchase applications in four of the last five weeks.”

The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to 60.6% of total applications, up from 60.0% the previous week.

The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity decreased to 3.5% of total applications.

Photo: Kelly Sikkema

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