Real Estate

Unusual holiday home-buying surge pushes mortgage demand higher


A real estate sign advertising a home “Under Contract” is pictured in Vienna, Virginia, outside of Washington.

Larry Downing | Reuters

An unusual surge in home buying, just as the market enters the historically slow holiday season, is driving mortgage demand higher. Total mortgage application volume rose 1.8% last week compared with the previous week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s seasonally adjusted index.

The increase was largely driven by applications to purchase a home, which rose 5% for the week but were still 4% lower than the same week one year ago. That was the third-straight weekly gain.

Buyers may be rushing in during the usually slow holiday season because they…


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