US Mortgages Rise to Highest Level in 16 Years: Is It Still Possible to Buy a Home?

While Freddie Mac notes that conventional 30-year mortgages hit 6.7%, other metrics suggest they’re already above 7%, adding hundreds of thousands of extra dollars to your home purchase.

Mortgage rates continue to rise in the United States. The increases in interest rates by the Federal Reserve (Fed) have made a dent in the country’s financial products. Home loan costs are at their highest level in 16 years. Sure, you can still buy a house. What is recommended? Expect.

According to Freddie Mac, home loan costs reached their highest point in 16 years, with the interest rate on a 30-year conventional mortgage reaching 6.7% on Wednesday.

However, by other measures, mortgages are more expensive. Mortgage rates have now more than doubled since the beginning of 2022. Measured by their “effective” rate, which takes into account the compounding period of a loan and therefore gives a truer picture of cost to buyers housing, mortgage rates are now just above 7%, according to Oxford Economics.

It seems that there is not much difference between about 3%, what the mortgages were worth a year ago, and more than 6% that they are worth now. However, for those unfamiliar with interest rates, a one percentage point increase in a mortgage rate can add hundreds of dollars to a property’s monthly payments, depending on the size of the loan.

Those sharply higher costs are freezing the housing market. The number of home loan applications fell about 14% during the last week of September, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association.

For example, a $300,000 loan at a 6% rate on a typical mortgage would add up to $1,800 per month, including principal and interest, according to NerdWallet. Earlier this year, when interest rates hovered around 3.5%, that same loan would have amounted to a monthly payment of $1,350. That is, in this example, you would be paying almost $500 dollars more now.

To the question of whether it is still possible to buy a house, the answer lies with each person. At Solo Dinero we believe that it is more convenient to wait, because interest rates are very high, as well as the price of housing. Even though the national median home cost has dropped by about $427,000 in recent weeks, it’s still too high for many budgets. If you add to this the cost of mortgages, you can pay thousands of dollars extra a year.

There may be some relief for buyers on the horizon as home prices are starting to fall and are likely to continue to fall in certain housing markets, economists predict. Home prices in Sacramento, California; Salt Lake City, Utah; and Seattle, Washington are experiencing some of the steepest drops.

As for mortgage rates, they are not expected to be reduced in the short term, as the Federal Reserve (Fed) is expected to further tighten its measures against inflation.