Real Estate

Weekly mortgage demand rises, driven by a strange surge in refinancing


A for sale sign in front of a home in Arlington, Virginia, on August 22, 2023.

Andrew Caballero-Reynolds | AFP | Getty Images

Mortgage rates rose again last week, and so did demand for refinances, which at face value doesn’t make a lot of sense.

Applications to refinance a home loan jumped 13% last week compared with the previous week, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s seasonally adjusted index. Application volume was still 29% lower than the same week one year ago.

Refinancing demand usually moves in the opposite direction as mortgage rates, but that was not the case. Last week the average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances…


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