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(MCT)—After riding a swift updraft earlier this year, mortgage rates have steadied at around 4.5 percent for a 30-year fixed loan.

But there’s a good chance they’ll resume their upward path. That’s one of a number of things borrowers need to know now to get the best loan.

“For planning purposes, if I were thinking of getting into the market next spring, I’d be working with numbers in the 5 percent range,” says Keith Gumbinger, vice president of HSH.com, a Riverdale, N.J.-based publisher of mortgage information. That would be up from around 3.5 percent earlier this year.

The market got some rate relief recently, when the Federal Reserve decided to continue its policy of buying bonds to keep mortgage rates low, in an effort to stimulate the housing market and the economy.

But the Fed has also made it clear that it will taper off such buying at some point, as the economy improves.

So does that mean buyers should speed up their timetables and jump into the market before rates start to rise again?

Not necessarily. For one thing, analysts aren’t predicting a huge increase.

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