A couple of weeks back, the ultimate authority on Greenwich mortgage rates hadn’t minced words. That was Freddie Mac, whose opinion about mortgage rates constitutes the final say in the matter. Freddie isn’t modest about its preeminence (Freddie’s trademarked corporate slogan is “We make home possible”). Together with sibling Fannie Mae, the quasi-governmental entities stand behind 60% of U.S. mortgages.
Each week their PMMS survey collects data snapshots from thrifts, credit unions, banks, and mortgage lenders to gauge of the direction of the home loan market. Future Greenwich home hunters and the homeowners whose properties are found in the current listings are constantly affected by those ups and downs. Naturally, the rate averages vary from lender to lender and state to state—but it’s the direction in which mortgage rates are headed that can be a spur for buyers. Either direction can cause activity. When rates rise quickly, buyers can be incentivized to lock in rates before they get out of hand. When they fall, that inducement disappears—although a shrinking monthly payment number does create an increasingly affordable scenario. Low rates create an encouraging “price is up, but cost is down” situation.
The week before last, Freddie’s headline had been an unequivocal piece of favorable news for Greenwich buyers and sellers:
“30-Year Mortgage Rate Hits Another 2017 Low.”
But last week’s follow-up failed to live up to the expected slight rebound . Freddie’s headline on Thursday was neither fish nor fowl, up nor down. It was the third possibility, where mortgage rates don’t go anywhere: they just sit there, deadpan as a professional poker player, revealing nothing.
The U.S. weekly average was still 3.78%, tying the low for the year. For Greenwich buyers who may have missed out on locking in the previous week’s home loan bargain rates, the reprieve was welcome news. Whether the expected rebound is on the way remains to be seen. With rates holding at historic lows, it creates an undeniably auspicious market opportunity in Greenwich.