The average rate for a benchmark 30-year mortgage ticked up 11 basis points (0.11 percentage points) over the past week to 3.22 percent, which is 55 basis points higher than at the same time last year and the highest average rate in twenty months with the heightened specter of multiple rate hikes next year (which should translate into even higher mortgage rates, less purchasing power for buyers and downward pressure on home values).

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