MBA Projects Mortgage Rates to Drop to 5.4% by Late 2023


According to an updated prediction from the Mortgage Bankers Association, mortgage rates will decline in 2023 after more than doubling this year.

The economists at MBA also predict that the US will experience a recession in the first quarter of the following year, which will be fueled by tighter financial conditions, decreased company investment, and sluggish global growth. The estimate predicts that, as a result, the unemployment rate will increase from its present level of 3.5 percent to 5.5 percent by the end of the following year.

Continue reading to find more details on this projection.

Real Estate Forecasts for 2023

According to chief economist and senior vice president for research and industry technology Mike Fratantoni, the US and international economies will face considerable difficulties in the coming year. 

This year’s dramatic increase in interest rates, which is a result of the Federal Reserve’s efforts to contain inflation, will cause the economy to slow down even more sharply than the housing market is already experiencing.

However, the good news for prospective homeowners is that mortgage rates are anticipated to decline in 2019. MBA says the average mortgage rate will be 5.4 percent by the end of 2023. According to Freddie Mac, the current average rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is 6.94 percent.

As the Fed is anticipated to continue raising interest rates this year, Fratantoni states that mortgage rates will continue to experience significant volatility in the months to come. The analysis predicts that the Fed’s continuous efforts to control inflation would ultimately result in a slowdown in mortgage demand from homebuyers in 2023.

Home Price Growth

According to MBA, mortgage origination volume will decrease from the $2.26 trillion anticipated in 2022 to $2.05 trillion in 2023. The estimate predicts a 3 percent fall in buy mortgage volume and a 24 percent decline in refinance volume for the coming year.

The slowing in housing activity and higher mortgage rates will decrease the rate of increase in home prices. According to the prediction, national housing values will be essentially unchanged in 2023 and 2024.

According to MBA Vice President and Deputy Chief Economist Joel Kan, this will give households some much-needed time to catch up to rising home values. Even though national price measures are mostly stable, home price decreases will be seen in many local markets.

He states that a significant share of the housing demand over the following few years would come from first-time homebuyers. Fewer starter houses are available because more homeowners are choosing to remain in their current homes rather than give up their extremely low mortgage rates. 

The housing supply is also likely to be constrained, given the low number of available homes for sale and the falling rate of new buildings.

Projections of Mortgage Delinquencies

MBA states that mortgage delinquencies are currently at low levels. But they will increase along with rising overall unemployment rates during a recession.

According to Marina Walsh of Mortgage Bankers Association’s Industry Analysis, the national mortgage delinquency rate hit a historic low in the second quarter of 2022. 

Still, it will probably rise as unemployment rises due to Hurricane Ian’s devastation in Florida, South Carolina, and other neighboring areas. She also asserts that the mortgage sector will suffer as a result of this slowdown.


The volume of originations has decreased, revenues have decreased, and costs are still rising. Lenders have started to reduce surplus capacity by cutting staff, leaving less lucrative channels, or giving up on the venture altogether.

Given the decline in production output from the record levels in 2020 and 2021, according to the MBA, there will need to be a 25 percent to 30 percent fall in employment in the mortgage business from peak to trough.

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