Contract US mortgage interest rates in January up 11 basis points from December 2013 to 4.37%, finds FHFA's National Average Contract Mortgage Rate for the Purchase of Previously Occupied Homes by Combined Lenders index

WASHINGTON , February 27, 2014 (press release) – National data shows interest rates on mortgages increased in January. Contract mortgage interest rates increased 0.11 percent from December to January, according to an index of new mortgage contracts.

According to the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), the National Average Contract Mortgage Rate for the Purchase of Previously Occupied Homes by Combined Lenders index was 4.37 percent for loans closed in late January. The index is calculated using FHFA’s Monthly Interest Rate Survey. The contract rate on the composite of all mortgage loans was 4.36 percent, up 11 basis points from 4.25 in December.

Interest rates are typically locked in 30-45 days before a loan is closed. Consequently, January data reflect market rates from mid-to-late December. The effective interest rate was 4.52 percent, up 12 basis points from 4.40 percent in December. The effective interest rate accounts for the addition of initial fees and charges over the life of the mortgage.

FHFA’s interest rate survey shows the average interest rate on conventional, 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages of $417,000 or less was 4.67 in January, an increase of 13 basis points. The average loan amount for all loans was $284,400 in January up $6,800 from $277,600 in December.

FHFA will release February index values Thursday, March 27th, 2014.

For more information, call David Roderer at (202) 649-3206. You can hear recorded index information by calling (202) 649-3993. You can find the complete contract rate series at


Source: FHFA

Technical note: The data are based on a small monthly survey of mortgage lenders, which may not be representative. The sample is not a statistical sample but is rather a convenience sample. Survey respondents were asked to report terms and conditions of all conventional, single-family, fully amortized purchase-money loans closed during the last five working days of the month. The data did not include mortgages guaranteed or insured by the Federal Housing Administration or the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Data also excluded refinancing loans and balloon loans. January 2014 data are based on 3,424 reported loans from 21 lenders, which include savings associations, mortgage companies, commercial banks, and mutual savings banks. The effective interest rate includes the amortization of initial fees and charges over a 10-year period (the historical assumption of the average life of a mortgage loan).


The Federal Housing Finance Agency regulates Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the 12 Federal Home Loan Banks. These government-sponsored enterprises provide more than $5.5 trillion in funding for the U.S. mortgage markets and financial institutions.

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