A variety of major mortgage rates receded today. The average interest rates for both 15-year fixed and 30-year fixed mortgages were slashed. The average rate of the most common type of variable-rate mortgage, the 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage, also went down. Although mortgage rates are always moving, they are quite low right now. If you’re looking to secure a fixed rate, now is a great time to buy a house. But as always, make sure to first think about your personal goals and circumstances before buying a house, and talk to multiple lenders to find a lender who can best meet your needs.
Today a couple of notable mortgage rates decreased. Here’s how that can affect your mortgage plans.
Compare national mortgage rates from various lenders
30-year fixed-rate mortgages
The average interest rate for a standard 30-year fixed mortgage is 3.23%, which is a decline of 2 basis points compared to one week ago. (A basis point is equivalent to 0.01%.) A 30-year fixed mortgage is the most common loan term. A 30-year fixed mortgage will often have a greater interest rate than a 15-year fixed rate mortgage — but also a lower monthly payment. You won’t be able to pay off your house as quickly and you’ll pay more interest over time, but a 30-year fixed mortgage is a good option if you’re looking to minimize your monthly payment.
The average rate for a 15-year, fixed mortgage is 2.51%, which is a decrease of 2 basis points from seven days ago. Compared to a 30-year fixed mortgage, a 15-year fixed mortgage with the same loan value and interest rate will have a larger monthly payment. However, if you’re able to afford the monthly payments, there are several benefits to a 15-year loan. You’ll most likely get a lower interest rate, and you’ll pay less interest in total because you’re paying off your mortgage much quicker.
A 5/1 ARM has an average rate of 3.28%, a fall of 1 basis point compared to last week. For the first five years, you’ll usually get a lower interest rate with a 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage compared to a 30-year fixed mortgage. However, you could end up paying more after that time, depending on the terms of your loan and how the rate adjusts with the market rate. If you plan to sell or refinance your house before the rate changes, an adjustable-rate mortgage might make sense for you. Otherwise, shifts in the market means your interest rate might be a good deal higher once the rate adjusts.
When you’re ready to apply for a loan, you can connect with a local mortgage broker or search online. Make sure to take into account your current finances and your goals when trying to find a mortgage. Things that affect the interest rate you might get on your mortgage include: your credit score, down payment, loan-to-value ratio and your debt-to-income ratio. Having a good credit score, a larger down payment, a low DTI, a low LTV or any combination of those factors can help you get a lower interest rate. Apart from the mortgage interest rate, additional costs including closing costs, fees, discount points and taxes might also impact the cost of your house. Make sure you talk to multiple lenders — including local and national banks, credit unions and online lenders — and comparison shop to find the best mortgage loan for you.
One important thing to consider when choosing a mortgage is the loan term, or payment schedule. The mortgage terms most commonly offered are 15 years and 30 years, although you can also find 10-, 20- and 40-year mortgages. Another important distinction is between fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgages. The interest rates in a fixed-rate mortgage are fixed for the duration of the loan. For adjustable-rate mortgages, interest rates are fixed for a certain number of years (most frequently five, seven or 10 years), then the rate fluctuates annually based on the market interest rate.
One factor to consider when choosing between a fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgage is the length of time you plan on living in your house. For people who plan on living long-term in their new house, fixed-rate mortgages may be the better option. While adjustable-rate mortgages can sometimes offer lower interest rates upfront, fixed-rate mortgages are more stable over time. If you don’t plan to keep your new home for more than three to 10 years, though, an adjustable-rate mortgage could give you a better deal. The “best” loan term all all depends on an individual’s situation and goals, so make sure to consider what’s important to you when choosing a mortgage.
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