The latest headline about home loan costs isn’t what homebuyers want to read. “Mortgage Rates Move Higher for Third Consecutive Week,” said Thursday’s announcement from mortgage giant Freddie Mac. As ominous as that sounds, mortgage costs actually haven’t moved much this year. And the most recent increases for fixed-rate 30-year home loans — from a nationwide average of 3.49 percent in late July to 3.62 percent this week — are just chicken feed.
The rise in rates since last month would add about $15 to the monthly payment on a $200,000 conventional loan. That won’t get you a tank of gasoline. Current average home loan rates are still well below where they were a year ago.
Thanks to the Federal Reserve — which has basically promised to keep the lid on borrowing costs until 2014 — mortgage costs should be the least of the worries for homebuyers.