Mortgage rates were virtually unchanged this week, but signs indicate that the housing market is constrained by higher prices and low inventory.

Mortgage buyer Freddie Mac reported Thursday that the benchmark 30-year loan rate was 3.18% this week, up from 3.17% last week. A year ago, the rate was 3.33%.

The 15-year loan, popular among those who refinance their mortgages, was unchanged from last week at 2.45%. A year ago it was 2.82%.

“Although mortgage rates remain low, we are beginning to see a pullback by those looking to enter the housing market,” said Sam Khater, Freddie Mac’s chief economist.

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