Weekly mortgage applications dropped 14.2 percent from last week. In the first year-over-year drop in three months, they were down 11.2 percent compared to last year. Considering the current coronavirus pandemic, potential homebuyers are understandably worried if this is the right time to make their next move. And with mortgage rates wildly shifting, it is hard for homeowners to get a pulse on what kind of rates they can lock in: One week, they’re near record lows, but by the next, they could be at 5 percent.
The U.S. housing market is showing signs of being infected by the coronavirus. With more Americans testing positive for COVID-19, the economy crashing, and increasing numbers of shuttered businesses and layoffs, fewer folks are seeking mortgages to purchase homes during this crisis.
The number of home buyers seeking mortgages dropped significantly in the week ending March 20, according to a weekly survey from the Mortgage Bankers Association. Weekly purchase applications fell 14.2% compared with the previous week—and was down 11.2% from the prior year, according to the nonseasonally adjusted numbers.