After increasing 4.6% the week prior, mortgage application volume increased 0.4% on an adjusted basis during the week ended April 3, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association's (MBA) Weekly Mortgage Applications Survey.
On an unadjusted basis, volume increased 1.0% compared with the previous week.
Applications for refinances fell 3.0% while applications for purchases increased 7%.
On an unadjusted basis, applications for purchases increased 7.0% compared with the previous week and were up 12.0% compared to the same week one year ago.
In a release, Mike Fratantoni, chief economist for the MBA, notes that applications for purchases last week reached the highest level since July 2013. It was the third straight week that purchase volume increased, likely ‘spurred on by still-low mortgage rates and strengthening housing markets,’ he says.
The refinance share of mortgage activity decreased to 57.0% of total applications, down from 60.0% the previous week to reach its lowest level since October 2014.
The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) with conforming loan balance ($417,000 or less) was 3.86%, down from 3.89% the previous week.
The average rate for a 30-year FRM with jumbo loan balance (greater than $417,000) was 3.81%, down from 3.90% the previous week.
The average rate for a 30-year FRM backed by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) was 3.69%, down from 3.73%.
The average rate for a 15-year FRM was 3.15%, down from 3.21%.
The average rate for a 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) was 2.76%, down from 2.93%.
The ARM share of mortgage activity was 5.5% of total applications.
Looking at volume by loan type, applications for mortgages backed by the FHA represented 13.2% of all applications, up from 12.8% the previous week. Applications for Veterans Affairs mortgages represented 10.7% of all loans, up from 10.5% the previous week. Applications for mortgages through the U.S. Department of Agriculture were unchanged at 0.8%.
All rates are based on closings. The survey covers over 75% of all U.S. retail residential mortgage applications.