The Federal Housing Finance Agency said average mortgage rates for home sales averaged 4.57% in July. According to the FHFA, July marks the fourth straight month of slow and steady mortgage rate declines. The rate for fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages averaged 4.55% in July, down 6 basis points from 4.61% in June. The effective interest rate, which reflects the amortization of initial fees and charges, was 4.67% in July, down 7 basis points from 4.74% in June. This national average is based on mortgage closings for previously occupied homes. The interest rate on conventional, 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage loans of $417,000 or less averaged 4.69% the FHFA reports. The average loan-to-price ratio in July was 76%, down 0.3% from 76.3% in June. The average loan amount was $213,800 in July, down $5,300 from $219,100 in June. Write to Jacob Gaffney. Follow him on Twitter @jacobgaffney.