ARE THE BEST MORTGAGE RATES GONE FOR GOOD?

USA Today reports that mortgage interest rates have ticked up for three of the past four weeks, and while big increases are unlikely, further drops are, too.

The average for a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage hit 3.53% this week, marking the first time rates pushed above 3.5% in more than three months, mortgage giant Freddie Mac reported Thursday. "I do think that perhaps the all-time low is behind us," says Freddie's chief economist, Frank Nothaft.

That all-time low was set in November when 3.31% was the average for a 30-year, fixed rate loan, according to Freddie Mac's weekly mortgage rate surveys.

For the rest of this year, Nothaft expects rates to gradually move higher, ending the year at about 3.75% and then moving above 4% sometime next year.

Suzanne Dingley

Suzanne Dingley

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