Mortgage Rates Today Slip Below 3.6% | December 17, 2021

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The average rate on a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage fell to 3.599% today, down 0.14 percentage points from yesterday. The rates on most other loan categories were also lower, with interest on a 30-year refinance loan falling to 3.776%.

Borrowers with good credit who are considering buying a home or refinancing their mortgage should always be able to secure a competitive interest rate and comfortable monthly payments.

  • The last rate on a 30 year fixed rate mortgage is 3.599%. ??
  • The last rate on a 15 year fixed rate mortgage is 2.569%. ??
  • The latest rate on a 5/1 ARM is 2.184%. ??
  • The latest rate on a 7/1 ARM is 3.332%. ??
  • The latest rate on a 10/1 ARM is 3.455%. ??

Money’s daily mortgage rates reflect what a borrower with a 20% down payment and a 700 credit score – roughly the national average – could pay if they applied for a home loan right now. Daily rates are based on the average rate of 8,000 lenders offered to applicants on the previous business day. Freddie Mac’s weekly rates will generally be lower because they measure the rates offered to borrowers with a higher credit rating.

30-year fixed rate mortgage rates today

  • The 30-year rate is 3.599%.
  • It’s a day offold by 0.014 percentage point.
  • It’s a month infold by 0.068 percentage point.

Most borrowers opt for the stability offered by a 30-year fixed rate mortgage. The interest rate and monthly payments won’t change until you get the loan, and the long repayment term means payments will be relatively low. However, the interest rates will be higher than on a shorter term loan, so you will pay more over the life of the loan.

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Average mortgage rates

Data based on U.S. mortgages closed December 16, 2021

Type of loan December 16 Last week Change
Conventional Fixed 15 Years 2.57% 2.59% 0.02%
Conventional Fixed 30 Years 3.6% 3.6% 0.0%
ARM rate 7/1 3.33% 3.09% 0.24%
ARM rate 10/1 3.46% 3.22% 0.24%

Your actual rate may vary

15 years fixed rate mortgage rates today

  • The 15-year rate is 2.569%.
  • It’s a day offold by 0.031 percentage point.
  • It’s a month offold by 0.042 percentage point.

Some borrowers prefer the lower interest rate and shorter term of a 15-year fixed rate mortgage. This means that the loan will not cost as much over the entire term and the debt will be paid off faster. However, the short term also means that the monthly payments will be higher than a loan of the same size over 30 years.

Variable rate mortgage rates today

  • The latest rate on a 5/1 ARM is 2.184%. ??
  • The latest rate on a 7/1 ARM is 3.332%. ??
  • The latest rate on a 10/1 ARM is 3.455%. ??

The interest rate on a variable rate mortgage will be fixed for a predetermined number of years before it becomes variable and begins to change regularly. For example, a 5/1 ARM will have a fixed rate for five years. Once the rate becomes adjustable, it will be reset every year. An ARM might be a good option if you don’t plan on staying in the house for the long term, as the initial interest rate can be very low. However, once the rate starts to adjust, it can go up dramatically.

Current mortgage rates: VA, FHA and jumbo loan rates

The average rates for FHA, VA and jumbo loans are:

  • The rate on a 30-year FHA mortgage is 3.308%. ??
  • The rate for a 30-year VA mortgage is 3.394%. ??
  • The rate for a 30-year jumbo mortgage is 3.575%. ??

Current mortgage refinancing rates

The average refinancing rates for 30-year loans, 15-year loans and ARMs are:

  • The refinance rate on a 30 year fixed rate refinance is 3.776%. ??
  • The refinance rate on a 15 year fixed rate refinance is 2.676%. ??
  • The refinancing rate on an ARM 5/1 is 2.462%. ??
  • The refinancing rate on an ARM 7/1 is 2.899%. ??
  • The refinancing rate on an ARM 10/1 is 3.947%. ??
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Average mortgage refinancing rates

Data based on U.S. mortgages closed December 16, 2021

Type of loan December 16 Last week Change
Conventional Fixed 15 Years 2.68% 2.7% 0.02%
Conventional Fixed 30 Years 3.78% 3.78% 0.0%
ARM rate 7/1 2.9% 2.88% 0.02%
ARM rate 10/1 3.95% 3.7% 0.25%

Your actual rate may vary

Where Are Mortgage Rates Going This Year?

Mortgage rates fell through 2020. Millions of homeowners responded to low mortgage rates by refinancing existing loans and taking out new ones. Many people have bought homes that they might not have been able to afford if the rates were higher. In January 2021, rates briefly fell to all-time low levels, but edged up slightly for the rest of the year.

Looking ahead, experts believe interest rates will rise further in 2022, but also modestly. Factors that could affect rates include continued economic improvement and more labor market gains. The Federal Reserve has also started cutting back on mortgage-backed securities purchases and announced that it plans to hike the federal funds rate three times in 2022 to fight rising inflation.

While mortgage rates are likely to rise, experts say the increase won’t happen overnight, and it won’t be a dramatic jump. Rates are expected to stay near their historically low levels throughout the first half of the year, rising slightly later in the year. Even with rates rising, this will still be a good time to finance a new home or refinance a mortgage.

Factors that influence mortgage rates include:

  • The Federal Reserve. The Fed took swift action when the pandemic hit the United States in March 2020. The Fed announced plans to move money through the economy by lowering the Federal Fund’s short-term interest rate between 0% and 0.25%, which is as low as they go. The central bank has also pledged to buy mortgage-backed securities and treasury bills, supporting the housing finance market, but started curtailing those purchases in November.
  • The 10-year Treasury note. Mortgage rates move at the same pace as the yields on 10-year government treasury bills. Yields fell below 1% for the first time in March 2020 and have risen since then. On average, there is typically a 1.8 point “spread” between Treasury yields and benchmark mortgage rates.
  • The economy in the broad sense. Unemployment rates and changes in gross domestic product are important indicators of the overall health of the economy. When employment and GDP growth are low, it means the economy is weak, which can lower interest rates. Thanks to the pandemic, unemployment levels reached record levels early last year and have yet to recover. GDP has also been affected, and although it has rebounded somewhat, there is still a lot of room for improvement.

Tips for getting the lowest mortgage rate possible

There is no universal mortgage rate that all borrowers receive. Qualifying for the lowest mortgage rates takes a bit of work and will depend on both personal financial factors and market conditions.

Check your credit score and your credit report. Mistakes or other red flags can lower your credit score. The borrowers with the highest credit scores will get the best rates, so it’s essential to check your credit report before you begin the home search process. Taking action to correct mistakes will help increase your score. If you have high credit card balances, paying them off can also give you a quick boost.

Save money for a large down payment. This will lower your loan-to-value ratio, which means how much of the home’s price the lender has to finance. A lower LTV usually results in a lower mortgage rate. Lenders also like to see money that has been saved in an account for at least 60 days. It tells the lender that you have the money to finance the purchase of the house.

Shop around for the best rate. Don’t settle for the first interest rate a lender offers you. Check with at least three different lenders to see who is offering the lowest interest rate. Also consider the different types of lenders, such as credit unions and online lenders, in addition to traditional banks.

As well. take the time to learn about the different types of loans. While the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is the most common type of mortgage, consider a shorter-term loan such as a 15-year loan or an adjustable rate mortgage. These types of loans often have a lower rate than a conventional 30-year mortgage. Compare the costs of everyone to see which one best suits your needs and your financial situation. Government loans – such as those backed by the Federal Housing Authority, the Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Department of Agriculture – may be more affordable options for those who qualify.

Finally, lock in your rate. Locking in your rate once you find the right rate, the right loan product, and the lender will help ensure that your mortgage rate does not increase until the loan closes.

Our mortgage rate methodology

Money’s Daily Mortgage Rates show the average rate offered by over 8,000 lenders in the United States for which the most recent rates are available. Today we’re posting the rates for Thursday, December 16, 2021. Our rates reflect what a typical borrower with a credit score of 700 can expect to pay on a home loan right now. These rates were offered to people with a 20% deposit and include discount points.

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