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By: Dan Green, "Mortgage Rates: Time to Panic?," for Tomorrow's Mortgage Executive

Let’s admit it. Mortgage rates in the three and low four percent range were very cool to experience, and not just for mortgage nerds and econ geeks. Yes, this period of uber-low rates pulled the US housing market out of a deep, dark recession. At the same time, these rates changed the nature of housing: Owners with low interest rate mortgages are loath to give them up since they can’t be replaced, so they will likely stay in their homes much longer than they used to. Low rates were good. Now they are gone, and everyone is worried. Is it time to panic?