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North American Title Insurance Company is a seasoned title insurance underwriter that has been helping customers achieve the American dream of homeownership for more than 50 years. In the past several years, we have become known as the “underwriter next door,� because our associates are always easy to reach and our processes are, at all times, quick and straightforward. Our agency application process is fast and transparent for qualified agents. NATIC offers a one-hour underwriting response guarantee that is unparallelled in our industry. In addition, we value our agents based on their title industry knowledge and experience, not just on profits alone.

Fixed-Rate Mortgages Dominant Choice of Refinancing Borrowers

November 16, 2010

Refinancing borrowers overwhelmingly chose fixed-rate loans, regardless of whether their original loan was an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) or a fixed-rate during the third quarter of 2010, according to Freddie Mac’s quarterly Product Transition Report.

While 30-year fixed-rate mortgages are still the most preferred product chosen for the new loan among borrowers who previously had that product or an ARM, borrowers who previously held shorter-term fixed-rate mortgages showed a stronger preference for staying with a 15-year or 20-year fixed-rate loan than they have in recent quarters. Overall, fixed-rate loans accounted for more than 95 percent of refinance loans.

Fixed mortgage rates fell throughout the third quarter in Freddie Mac's Primary Mortgage Market Survey, with 30-year fixed rates dropping to levels not seen since the early 1950s.

“We ended the second quarter excited that borrowers could lock in a rate of 4.75 percent for 30 years, and we ended the third quarter with rates at just a touch over 4.25 percent. It's no wonder borrowers are attracted to fixed-rate loans,” said Frank Nothaft, Freddie Mac vice president and chief economist. The share of borrowers shortening their amortization terms remains high. There is always a discount for shorter terms but the payments are often about 50 percent higher than a 30-year amortizing payment and thus are unaffordable to many homeowners. What we're seeing now is that the level of the 15-year payment is becoming more affordable to more borrowers."

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