Mortgage rates move higher in late February survey

Bills shaped like house

Although mortgage rates ticked up this week, they remain very close to the record lows reached earlier this month, according to’s most recent survey of major lenders.

If you're a first time home buyer you might be able to take advantage of state programs that offer loans for less than you'll find anywhere else.

The West Virginia Housing Development Fund, for example, touts a 30-year, fixed-rate loan for 2.99%.

The Louisiana Housing Finance Agency has 30-year FHA or VA loans for 2.95%.

That's more than a percentage point less than the average cost for a 30-year loan in our new survey.

Although you'll have to meet certain income or house price limits to qualify, applying isn't any more difficult or time-consuming than applying for a conventional loan.

Click here to learn more about how state programs can help you buy a home.

Our Feb. 22 survey found the average interest rate for a:

30-year, fixed-rate loan rose from a record low of 4.10% last week to 4.16% this week. This time last year, rates were 5.09%.

15-year, fixed-rate loan rose slightly from 3.35% to 3.38% this week. This type of loan reached a record low of 3.34% on Feb. 1. At this time last year, these loans averaged 4.37%.

30-year, fixed-rate jumbo loan -- mortgages for more than $417,000 to $625,000, depending on the city -- rose to 4.65% from 4.56% last week. Jumbo rates reached their record low of 4.55% on Feb. 1, and cost 5.67% in late February 2011.

5-year, adjustable-rate loans -- where the initial interest rate remains fixed for the first five years and then changes once a year -- increased to 3.12% from 3.03% last week. These loans reached a record low of 3.02% on Feb. 1. They cost 3.93% in late February 2011.

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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