In the week ending Thursday, average rates for 30-year contracts dropped from 3.9 percent to 3.88 percent with 0.7 point. Thirty-year mortgage rates averaged 4.78 percent the same week of 2011.
Average rates on 15-year contracts averaged 3.12 percent, down from 3.13 percent in the previous week and one tick above the record low of 3.11 percent.
A popular contract for refinancing, 15-year mortgages averaged 0.6 point. A year earlier, rates for 15-year mortgages averaged 3.97 percent.
Five-year adjustable rate mortgages averaged 2.85 percent in the week, up from 2.78 percent with an average 0.6 point. A year earlier, five-year adjustable rate contracts averaged 3.51 percent.
Average rates on one-year treasury-indexed adjustable mortgages fell from 2.81 percent to 2.74 percent with 0.6 point. A year ago, rates for these loans averaged 3.15 percent.
Freddie Mac's vice president and chief economist Frank Nothaft said interest rates remained low while investors waited for word from the U.S. Federal Reserve on monetary policy, which was left unchanged, the Fed announced Wednesday.
In additions, "The housing market has also shown some improvement as well. The Federal Housing Finance Agency's purchase-only house price index rose at a monthly rate of 0.3 percent in February," he said in a release.