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The main mortgage rates were lower on Thursday. The average 30-year mortgage rate is 3.97%, which equates to a $475.69 monthly payment per $100,000 borrowed, or $28.32 higher than the equivalent payment would have been a month ago.

The average 15-year mortgage rate, at 3.15%, equates to a $697.82 monthly payment per $100,000 borrowed, or $19.67 higher than the equivalent payment would have been a month ago.

Rate (National Average)

Today

1 Month Ago

30-year fixed jumbo

4.49%

4.08%

30-year fixed

3.97%

3.47%

15-year fixed

3.15%

2.74%

30-year fixed refi

3.99%

3.50%

15-year fixed refi

3.17%

2.77%

5/1 ARM

3.29%

3.01%

5/1 ARM refi

3.47%

3.15%

5/1 ARM: ADJUSTABLE-RATE MORTGAGE WITH AN INITIAL FIXED 5-YEAR INTEREST RATE. DATA SOURCE: BLOOMBERG. RATES MAY INCLUDE POINTS.

Mortgage rates hit a more than two-year high in December

Mortgage agency Freddie Mac today released the results of its Primary Mortgage Market Survey, which documented the sixth consecutive weekly increase in fixed mortgage rates, achieving new highs for the year.

In fact, according to Freddie Mac's data, at an average rate of 4.08% for the week ended Dec. 8, the 30-year fixed rate mortgage is higher than it has been since Oct. 2014. The 15-year fixed rate mortgage, at 3.36%, is higher than it has been since Sept. 2014. These observations (which dovetail with data reported yesterday by the Mortgage Bankers Association) are illustrated in the graph below, which shows both of these rates over the past three years:

Images

It seems increasingly likely that the rate cycle has turned so potential homebuyers may want to sharpen their focus, which is already occurring as homebuyers appear to be undeterred by the run-up in rates since the election.

Alex Dumortier, CFA has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.