Mortgage applications increased slightly last week

The refinance share of mortgage activity increased to 78.3 percent of total applications from 76.8 percent the previous week, a sign that more homeowners are able to take advantage of record-low loan rates. 

During August, the investor share of applications for home purchases was 5.7 percent, a slight increase from 5.5 percent in July. The share of purchase mortgages for second homes increased to 6 percent in August from 5.9 percent in July.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with conforming loan balances ($417,500 or less) remained unchanged at 4.29 percent.

The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages with jumbo loan balances ( greater than $417,500) decreased to 4.55 percent from 4.57 percent.

The rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages backed by the FHA decreased to 4.07 percent from 4.08 percent.

The average for a 15-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased to 3.46 percent from 3.52 percent.