After a slight increase in the previous week, mortgage rates edged closer to record lows in the week ending October 18, according to Freddie Mac.
The government-sponsored enterprise's Primary Mortgage Market Survey showed 30-year fixed-rate mortgages averaged 3.37 percent, down slightly from the previous week's average of 3.39 percent. A year ago, 30-year FRMs averaged 4.11 percent.
Meanwhile, 15-year FRMs averaged 2.66 percent, down from 2.7 percent last week and 3.38 percent at this time last year.
"Mortgage rates remained more or less unchanged this week as home construction builds up steam," said Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist at Freddie Mac. "Construction on single-family homes jumped to an annualized rate of 11 percent in August, the strongest pace since August 2008."
Despite mortgage rates remaining near record lows, loan application volume dropped off in the week ending October 12, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association. The decline in refinances outweighed the slight bump in purchase requests. However, the Purchase Index reached its highest level since June 2012.