Home prices continue to normalize across the country while mortgage rates have increased slightly, according to recent reports by Freddie Mac and the National Association of REALTORS®.
The thirty year conventional, fixed rate mortgage has risen to a national average of 6.37 percent in late May, compared to 6.18 percent in April, and 6.51 percent in April 2006. Much of this increase has been attributed to the recent shake-up within the sub prime mortgage market. Although experts believe there may be more increases in store later this year, these historically low rates continue to support the housing market during the country's recent cool down period.
Single family home sales declined 2.4 percent from March to April, while statistics for existing homes were mixed regionally. The market got an additional boost from new-home sales, which jumped over 16 percent in April, according to the Commerce Department. The market for new homes was particularly strong in the South, which showed a 27.8 percent increase in new home sales, followed by 8.5 percent in the West, and 3.8 percent in the Northeast. The Midwest was the one area where new home sales actually declined and showed a 4 percent drop during April.