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Mortgage rates fall, 30-year fixed average at 4.29%, Freddie Mac says

Mortgage rates down a bit on news of slow growth

With inflation fears at bay, fixed-rate home loans got a bit cheaper this week, with Freddie Mac’s survey putting the average interest rate for a 30-year mortgage at 4.29%, down from 4.33% a week ago.

The average rate for 15-year fixed mortgages declined to 3.38% from 3.39%.

The starting points for adjustable-rate loans edged slightly higher, however, the big home finance company said Thursday.

Gross domestic product estimates released this week showed a rise of just 0.1% for the first quarter, well below market expectations, noted Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac’s chief economist.

That provides reason for worries about the economy, but not concern that inflation could take hold, driving interest rates higher.

Freddie Mac asks lenders each week about the terms they are offering to borrowers considered low risk. The cost of appraisals and title insurance, usually paid by borrowers, is not included. 

The survey assumes the borrowers pay less than 1% of the loan amount in fees and discount points to the lenders. Paying additional points upfront can reduce the rate, while borrowers often obtain no-cost loans by accepting a higher interest rate.

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