Real Estate Market Catches a Break During Government Shutdown
Although the real estate market has bounced from lows reached during the financial crisis, higher interest rates and a still-sluggish economy have weighed on homebuyers in recent months. The government shutdown also doesn’t help, as some loan processing functions are delayed. However, mortgage applications in the United States managed to climb higher as rates dipped to their lowest level in months.
According to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s latest report, for the week ended October 4, loan applications increased 1.3 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier — only the sixth gain in 22 weeks. The figure includes both refinancing and home purchase demand and covers more than 75 percent of all domestic retail residential mortgage applications.
The industry group’s refinance index increased 3 percent from a week earlier and is at its highest level since the beginning of August. Overall, the refinance share of mortgage activity accounted for 64 percent of total applications, which is 1 percent higher from a week earlier and 7 percent above its lowest level since April 2010.