Mortgage rates hold steady, and low, in mid-October survey

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Mortgage rates showed only slight movement this week, according to’s most recent survey of major lenders.

It will be interesting to see if more homeowners will have a chance to refinance at these near record low rates by late this year or early 2012.

State officials and the nation's largest banks are working toward a deal over allegations that hundreds of thousands of foreclosures were not properly documented.

Over the next few weeks, watch for the banks to accept a $25-billion settlement that would require them to refinance underwater loans that they've refused to rework before.

Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citigroup and Ally Financial could be ready to sign by the end of the month, but how generous will they be to homeowners who have no equity in their property?

Very few borrowers who owe more than their homes are worth have been able to get a new home loan and benefit from these low interest rates.

Our Oct. 19 survey found the average interest rate for a:

30-year, fixed-rate loan increased slightly to 4.38% from 4.37% this week. This type of loan cost 4.42% in mid-October 2010.

15-year, fixed-rate loan declined from 3.59% last week to 3.58% this week. That’s still less than the average rate at this time last year, 3.82%.

30-year, fixed-rate jumbo loan (mortgages that exceed $417,000 to $625,000, depending on the city) slipped to 4.89% from 4.90% last week. Last fall, jumbo loans cost 5.08%.

5-year, adjustable-rate loan -- home loans on which the initial interest rate remains fixed for the first five years and then changes once a year after that -- dropped to 3.24% from 3.26%. This type of loan cost 3.60% in mid-October 2010.

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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