Interest rates rise for second straight week

Mortgage rates have risen slightly again.As the economy continues to pick up steam, Freddie Mac says interest rates jumped again over the last week, increasing mortgage costs for those looking to buy a home.According to the report, the average interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage during the week ending March 31 was 4.86 percent, up slightly from 4.81 percent the previous week. Rates for 15-year loans also increased, edging up to 4.09 percent from 4.05 the week before.”Fixed mortgage rates rose slightly for a second week in a row, but continue to remain quite low,” said Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist for Freddie Mac. “Sales of distressed properties continue to place downward pressure on house prices.”Nothaft noted that the National Association of Realtors said foreclosures made up 39 percent of sales in February.While foreclosures are still a significant part of the Houston real estate market, they are much more prevalent in other parts of the country. According to RealtyTrac, they made up just 13 percent of sales in the state last year, compared to nearly 26 percent nationwide.Courtesy of 2M Realty News

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