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Jackson Hole Banker: Mortgage rates at ‘record lows’

By   /  July 26, 2010  /  No Comments

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The Sleeping Indian, more properly known as Sheep Mountain, doesn't appear interested in when interest rates may rise. Photo taken at sunset on July 23, 2010 from Spring Creek Ranch.

This week’s “Economic Report and Rate Sheet” from First Interstate Bank* reports another drop for 30-year fixed-rate home mortgages to a national average of 4.56 percent.

“The rate marks yet another record low in Freddie Mac’s 39-year survey,” writes Patti Patterson, real estate loan officer with FIB here in Jackson Hole. “A year ago, rates for 30-year mortgages averaged 5.2 percent.”

Why are these rates continuing to go down? When will they go up?

Unlike the other subjects covered here at Teton Realty Today, do not call me for an explanation of the factors that drive these numbers! Not even bankers seem to know the answer as they have been calling for rates to rise for the better part of a year. Search this site for “mortgage” and there are several posts reporting calls for an imminent rise in rates.

If you are interesting in buying real estate  in the near future, however, please do, give your banker a call to see what kind of loan programs they have available and which ones you might qualify for. Then give me a call for an updated inventory list in your target market – having a good relationship with a banker and knowing what you can afford ahead of time is tremendously empowering for buyers.

Other tidbits in this week’s report from FIB included:

  • The Dodd-Frank act permanently raises the current standard maximum deposit insurance amount to $250,000.  That coverage limit applies per depositor, per insured depository institution for each account ownership category.  The new law also made the increase retroactive to Jan. 1, 2008 and the amount therefore applies to six banks that failed between Jan. 1 and Oct.3.  That means the number of uninsured depositors at the failed institutions has been reduced from more than 10,000 to about. 500.
  • The House last week passed legislation that would reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program for 5-years and make several changes to the program.  Among other things, the bill would create and phase in a new risk-rate schedule for homeowners in newly designated special flood-hazard areas; increase the program’s coverage limits and allow premium increases of up to 20 percent annually.  The Senate must still consider the legislation.
  • First Interstate’s current rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is 4.625 percent for a conforming loan (up to $417,000); 4.75 percent for a Super Conforming loan (up to $693,750); and 5.75 percent for a Jumbo loan. Fifteen-year rates are 3.875, 4.25 and 5.375, respectively.

* As mentioned in previous posts, Realtors regularly receive information such as this from a variety of sources in professions associated with real estate including lenders, title companies, builders, fellow Realtors and more. Please do not consider posts that relate this information as an endorsement of any specific business.

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