Here's a look at the state of mortgage rates from Bankrate.com's weekly national survey of large banks and thrifts conducted March 17, 2010.
MortgagesRate: 5.07 percent (30-year fixed) Average Points: 0.38
Mortgage rates edged lower this week.
The average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage slipped 1 basis point, to 5.07 percent. A basis point is one-hundredth of a percentage point.
Meanwhile, this week's average 15-year fixed-rate -- a popular option for refinancing -- rose 2 basis points, to 4.45 percent.
The average jumbo 30-year fixed fell 4 basis points, to 5.88 percent.
Adjustable-rate mortgages split this week. The one-year adjustable-rate mortgage rose 1 basis point, to 4.84 percent. Meanwhile, the popular 5/1 ARM fell 1 basis point, to 4.46 percent.
Mortgage applications slipped a seasonally adjusted 1.9 percent when compared to a week earlier, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. For the week ending March 12, applications for new purchase fell 2.3 percent, while refinancing activity dropped 1.7 percent.
In other mortgage-related news, housing starts fell 5.9 percent in February when compared to January, according to the U.S. Commerce Department. Starts were up 0.2 percent year over year.
Building permits also fell 1.6 percent in February, but were up 11.3 percent year over year.
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-- Chris Kissell