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Even Crazier Than Last Week: Rates Briefly Topped 7% For 1st Time in 20 Years

There was no rest for weary rate watchers after last week’s rout. This week turned out to be even more volatile. UK in The Spotlight (Still) UK issues are still having a big impact.  Last week’s rate spike was most readily attributable to market panic over a budgetary decision in The UK.  Panic remained on…
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Mortgage Rates Closing in on 7%. Any Relief in Sight?

In order to make the most of today’s newsletter, you’ll need a basic understanding of the Fed Funds Rate (the thing the Fed actually hikes or cuts in an attempt to keep inflation in a target range) and the fact that mortgage rates are very different from the Fed Funds Rate. Here is a handy…
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Make your offer stand out with an Appraisal Waiver

What is an Appraisal Waiver? An Appraisal Waiver is when you qualify to skip the appraisal process when obtaining a mortgage. Why is this a big deal when putting in an offer to buy a new home? It tells the seller that there is no risk of the home appraising lower than your offer price…
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6.0% Rates? Big Hike From The Fed Next Week? Both Old News. Here’s What Matters

By this time next week, we will have heard from the Fed as they announce the next rate hike on September 21st.  It will be big too.  Just how big is a matter of debate.  0.75% is a safe starting point, but 1.00% will be on the table as well.  The former would match July’s…
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Things Are About to Get Interesting

It’s certainly already been an interesting year for financial markets–especially for housing and interest rates. But most of what’s happened over the past 8 months could be thought of as the more predictable phase of the post-pandemic market cycle. It’s what happens next that’ll be more interesting. How could anyone say that the last 8…
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Fed Reminds Markets Why Rates Went Sharply Higher in August

While it was never likely to contain too many surprises, this week’s much-anticipated Jackson Hole speech from Fed Chair Powell served as an important reminder as to why rates have risen so sharply in August. The Fed has 8 scheduled policy meetings per year.  At the conclusion of those meetings, the Fed releases an official…
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The Curious Case of Lower Inflation Being Bad For Rates

Markets and mortgage rates are currently trying to reconcile the big narratives that have accounted for most of the movement in 2022.  In one corner we have inflation and the forces trying to fight it.  In the other, we have the economic fallout from that fight. Inflation was the main reason rates skyrocketed in the first…
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4.99% Mortgage Rates?! That’s Old News

The big monthly jobs report from the Labor Department (officially “The Employment Situation) is one of the most reliable sources of volatility for interest rates.  While this was much easier to observe before the pandemic, key economic reports have been getting more and more attention as the market looks for evidence that inflation and tighter…
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The Real Reason Mortgage Rates Are Dropping at a Record Pace

Mortgage rates have been all over the map recently, both in terms of their movement and in their variation between lenders.  The disconnects are so big as to require a deeper explanation. Let’s quantify “big.”  Best-case-scenario rates for a conventional 30yr fixed are down about half a point from last week on average and more than…
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Lowest Rates Since Early June. What’s Europe Got to do With It?

The market came into the week with a big focus on the scheduled policy announcement from the European Central Bank (ECB).  While our focus remains on mortgage rates in an entirely different continent, major goings on in European markets almost always have an effect on the equivalent U.S. markets. That would prove true on several…
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