NEW RECORD: Freddie Mac said Thursday the rate on the 30-year fixed mortgage fell this week to 3.94 percent from 4.01 percent. That's the lowest ever and the first time rates on the loan have fallen below 4 percent in history.
FEW TAKERS: The super-low rates haven't been enough to lift the housing market, which has struggled with bad sales and falling home prices.
BIG OBSTACLES: For many Americans, buying a house is too big a risk when unemployment is high, raises are scarce and millions of foreclosures are forcing down prices. Others can't qualify because of higher credit scores and little or negative home equity.