Mortgage rates dipped below 5%, according to Freddie Mac’s (FRE) weekly survey. The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage (FRM) was 4.97% with an average 0.7 origination point for the week ending February 11. That’s down slightly from one week ago, when the rate was 5.01%. A year ago, the average rate was 5.16%. “Interest rates on 30-year fixed-rate mortgages are below 5 percent for a third week this year, which helps a number of homeowners to refinance their existing housing debt” said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist. “In mid-June of last year, for example, 30-year fixed-mortgage rates topped nearly 5.6%. Currently, the monthly payments would be almost $77 per month lower on a $200,000 loan balance,” Nothaft added. Bankrate.com’s survey of large banks and thrifts put the average rate for 30-year FRM at 5.15% with an average 0.44 point, steady from its average a week ago. Last year, Bankrate.com put the 30-year FRM at 5.34%. Freddie said the 15-year FRM averaged 4.34% with an average 0.6 point, down from last week’s average of 4.4% and a year ago, when the average was 4.81%. Bankrate.com put the 15-year FRM at 4.52% with a 0.44 origination point, down from 4.55% a week ago. The five-year Treasury-indexed hybrid adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) averaged 4.19% with an average 0.6 point, down from last week’s average of 4.27% and last year’s average of 5.23%. Bankrate.com put the five-year ARM at 4.56%, steady from last week. Freddie said the one-year Treasury-indexed ARM averaged 4.33% with an average 0.6 point, up from last week when it averaged 4.22% but down from last year’s average of 4.94%. Write to Austin Kilgore. The author held no relevant investments.

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