Jumbo mortgage rates begin December at record lows

Hundred dollar bill folded in shape of a house

Jumbo mortgage rates remained at the record low they reached last week, according to our latest survey of major lenders.

The average cost of the other types of home loans we track remains near the record lows set earlier this fall.

Could they be poised to go even lower early next year?

A new Bloomberg News survey of the nation's biggest bond dealers found they expect the Federal Reserve will pump more money into the economy by purchasing more mortgage-backed bonds.

Sixteen of the 21 primary dealers of U.S. government securities that trade with the central bank said they expect the Fed to resume buying home-loan debt during the first three months of 2012.

Those traders projected that the government-controlled bank would buy $545 million worth of bonds (the median estimate) to add to the $2.3 trillion in Treasury and mortgage-backed bonds it purchased between 2008 and June 2011.

Increasing the amount of money available for home loans would work to hold interest rates at their current all-time lows -- or drive them down even further.

Our Nov. 30 survey found the average interest rate for a:

30-year, fixed-rate loan increased to 4.25% from 4.23% this week. The record low for this type of mortgage is 4.21% established Oct. 5.

15-year, fixed-rate loan grew slightly this week from 3.47% to 3.48%. This mortgage type reached its record low of 3.42% on Sept. 21.

30-year, fixed-rate jumbo loan (mortgages that exceed $417,000 to $625,000, depending on the city) held at the all-time low of 4.74% for the second week.

5-year, adjustable-rate loan -- where the initial interest rate remains fixed for the first five years and then changes once a year -- also rose this week, increasing from 3.20% last week to 3.21%. Five-year ARMs declined to a record low of 3.05% on Sept. 21.

Our database of interest rates can help you find the best deals in your area, including many that are less costly than the national averages.

You can use our calculator to determine the monthly payments for the exact amount you want to borrow with this or any home loan.

It will also provide a month-by-month amortization schedule that shows how much you've reduced your debt and how much you still owe.

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