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Mortgage rates in the U.S. are now at their highest level since 2006

Click to play video: 'Your Money: Tips for managing monthly mortgage payments due to rising interest hikes.'
Your Money: Tips for managing monthly mortgage payments due to rising interest hikes.
Personal finance expert Rubina Ahmed-Haq joins Candace Daniel to break down options homeowners have for re-paying their mortgage due to interest rate hikes – Sep 22, 2022

The average interest rate on the most popular U.S. home loan rose to its highest level since 2006 as the housing sector continued to bear the brunt of tightening financial conditions, data from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) showed on Wednesday.

Mortgage rates have more than doubled since the beginning of the year as the Federal Reserve pursues an aggressive path of interest rate hikes to bring down stubbornly high inflation.

Those actions, designed to cool the economy sufficiently to curb price pressures, have weighed heavily on the interest-rate-sensitive housing sector as expectations for Fed tightening have led to a surge in Treasury yields. The yield on the 10-year note acts as a benchmark for mortgage rates.

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The average contract rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage rose by six basis points to 6.81 per cent for the week ended Oct. 7 while the MBA’s Market Composite Index, a measure of mortgage loan application volume, fell 2.0 per cent from a week earlier and is down roughly 69 per cent from one year ago.

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Its Purchase Index, a measure of all mortgage loan applications for purchase of a single family home, fell 2.1 per cent from the prior week and is 39 per cent lower than a year ago, while MBA’s refinance Index declined 1.8 per cent last week and is down 86 per cent from one year ago.

Homebuilding and sales have weakened significantly in recent months, with home resales posting seven straight months of declines. However, home prices remain high even as house price growth slows, eroding affordability for buyers who are still competing due to a shortage of properties for sale.

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