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Historical Mortgage Rates: Seeing Averages and Trends by Decade

It’s no secret that mortgage rates have been historic as of late, making their own mark in United States housing market history by reaching an all-time record low of 2.65% in January 2021 and surging to 7.23% in August 2023, according to Freddie Mac.

But then we think to the ’80s when interest rates were 13%, or even more specifically to October 1981 when rates reached as high as 18.63%.

According to U.S. News & World Report, by historical standards, today’s mortgage rates are pretty on par with what homeowners have paid in the past. Since Freddie Mac began tracking rates in April 1971, the median 30-year mortgage rate is 7.41%. However, it’s still true that rates are high by modern standards, since the typical rate observed over the past decade is under 4%.

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