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Mortgage rates are holding relatively stable this week after dropping significantly late last week. 30-year average fixed rates remain at their lowest level in a month.
Mortgage rates topped 7% for the first time in late October, the highest rates in 20 years. Although they have trended downwards since then, rates are still more than three percentage points higher than at the start of 2022.
This rapid rise in rates has significantly reduced affordability for borrowers and driven many promising homebuyers out of business. Existing home sales fell nearly 24% year over year in September, according to the National Association of Realtors.
The housing market is likely to remain sluggish until rates fall further, which could start to happen in 2023. But even when rates finally do fall, they likely won’t drop to the all-time lows we saw in 2020 and 2021, year fixed rates fell below 3%.
For borrowers navigating the market right now, employing cost-saving strategies are more important than ever. Shop around with multiple mortgage lenders to find the one with the lowest rates and fees, put a larger down payment to reduce the amount you need to borrow, and be open to mortgage options you wouldn’t normally consider, such as a shorter term or adjustable rate mortgage.
Current mortgage rates
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Current refinancing rates
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Use our free mortgage calculator to see how today’s mortgage rates would affect your monthly payments. By linking rates and different terms, you’ll also understand how much you’ll be paying over the entire term of your mortgage.
Your estimated monthly payment
- Paying a 25% a higher down payment would save you $8,916.08 on interest expenses
- Lower the interest rate by 1% it would save you $51,562.03
- Paying a supplement $500 each month would shorten the loan term by 146 months
Click “Learn More” for tips on how to save on your long-term mortgage.
Thirty-year fixed rate mortgage
The current 30-year average fixed mortgage rate is 7.08%, according to Freddie Mac. That’s up from the previous week.
The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is the most common type of home loan. With this type of mortgage, you’ll pay back what you borrowed in 30 years, and your interest rate won’t change for the life of the loan.
The long 30-year term lets you spread your payments over a long period of time, which means you can keep your monthly payments lower and more manageable. The trade-off is that you will get a higher rate than you would with shorter terms or adjustable rates.
15 year fixed rate mortgage
The average 15-year fixed-rate mortgage rate is 6.38%, up from the previous week, according to data from Freddie Mac. The last time this rate was above 6% was in 2008.
If you want the predictability that comes with a fixed rate but are looking to spend less on interest over the life of your loan, a 15-year fixed rate mortgage may be a good fit for you. Because these terms are shorter and have lower rates than 30-year fixed rate mortgages, you could potentially save tens of thousands of dollars in interest. However, you will have a higher monthly payment than you would with a longer term.
Adjustable 5/1 mortgage rates
The average 5/1 Adjustable Mortgage Rate is 6.06%, up from the previous week. This is also the first time this rate has exceeded 6% since 2008.
Adjustable-rate mortgages can seem very attractive to borrowers when rates are high, because the rates on these mortgages are usually lower than the rates on fixed-rate mortgages. A 5/1 ARM is a 30-year mortgage. For the first five years you will have a fixed rate. After that, your rate will change once a year. If the rates are higher when your rate adjusts, you will have a higher monthly payment than what you started with.
If you’re considering an ARM, make sure you understand how much your rate could go up each time it adjusts, and how much it could eventually go up over the life of the loan.
Should I get a HELOC? pros and cons
If you’re looking to leverage your home’s equity, a HELOC may be the best way to go about it right now, especially considering how much home prices have risen over the past couple of years. Unlike a cash refinance, you won’t have to get a whole new mortgage with a new interest rate, and you’ll likely get a better rate than with a home equity loan.
But HELOCs don’t always make sense. It is important to consider the pros and cons.
- You only pay interest on what you borrow
- They typically have lower rates than alternatives, including home equity loans, personal loans, and credit cards
- If you have a lot of capital, you could potentially borrow more than you could with a personal loan
- Rates are variable, which means your monthly payments may increase
- Taking the equity out of your home can be risky if property values go down or you default on the loan
- The minimum withdrawal amount may be more than you wish to borrow
Are mortgage rates going up?
Mortgage rates started to climb from historic lows in the second half of 2021 and have increased significantly so far in 2022.
In the last 12 months, the consumer price index increased by 7.7%. The Federal Reserve has been working to keep inflation under control and is expected to raise its federal funds target rate two more times this year, following hikes in the past five meetings.
While not directly tied to the federal funds rate, mortgage rates are sometimes pushed higher due to rate hikes from the Fed and investor expectations about how those hikes will impact the economy.
Inflation remains high, but has started to slow down, which is a good sign for mortgage rates and the broader economy.
How do I find personalized mortgage rates?
Some mortgage lenders allow you to customize the mortgage rate on their websites by entering your down payment amount, zip code, and credit score. The resulting fee isn’t set in stone, but it can give you an idea of how much you’ll pay.
If you’re ready to start shopping for homes, you can apply for pre-approval with a lender. The lender takes a tough credit roll and looks at your finance details to lock in a mortgage rate.
How do mortgage rates compare between lenders?
You can apply for prequalification with multiple lenders. A lender takes a general look at your finances and gives you an estimate of the rate you will pay.
If you’re further along in the home buying process, you have the option of applying for pre-approval with several lenders, not just one company. By receiving letters from multiple lenders, you can compare customized rates.
Requesting pre-approval requires a strong credit appeal. Try applying with multiple lenders within a few weeks, because bundling all of your hard credit rolls into the same amount of time will hurt your credit score less.