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Mortgage interest rates drop

Fill in the loan

Fill in the loan Credit: iStock

Mortgage interest rates declined this week, returning to or beating previous record lows, according to Freddie Mac’s weekly survey. The average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate home loan matched its record low at 3.49 percent, with an average 0.6 point. Last week the average was 3.55 percent, and a year ago it was 4.09 percent.

The average 15-year fixed dropped to a record low at 2.77 percent with an average 0.6 percent, down from last week’s average of 3.55 percent. A year ago, the average was 3.29 percent.

Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist for Freddie Mac, said that in the United States, “existing home sales increased by 7.8 percent in August to its strongest pace since May 2010."

On the local front, August home sales leaped 12.2 percent compared to last August in Nassau and 12.9 percent compared to July 2012, according to the Multiple Listing Service of Long Island. Sales also increased in Suffolk, though less dramatically: August sales rose 1.8 percent compared to August 2011, and 7.8 compared to July 2012, MLSLI reports.

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