(Bloomberg) -- Mortgage rates in the US dropped for a third consecutive week, falling to the lowest level since early April.  

The average for a 30-year, fixed loan was 6.87%, down from 6.95% last week, Freddie Mac said in a statement Thursday. 

While the string of recent declines helps ease some of the pressure on homebuyers, many remain on the sidelines. Owners also are reluctant to list their properties and move, which would mean giving up their pandemic-era cheap loans. With key inflation metrics cooling toward the Federal Reserve’s 2% target, housing experts are looking forward to rate cuts to inject life into the flagging market. 

In the four weeks through June 16, buyer contracts fell 3.8% from the same period a year earlier, the biggest annual decline since February, Redfin Corp. reported. Many listings are sitting on the market for 30 days or longer, and with prices so high, buyers are gravitating to move-in-ready homes, the brokerage said. 

Fed policymakers are projecting just one rate cut this year, hinting that mortgage costs will remain elevated for at least the near future. That may continue to discourage some house hunters, but for those determined to forge ahead, “it’s important to shop around for the best mortgage rate as they can vary widely between lenders,” Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist, said in the statement.  

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