The average interest rate for the most popular 30-year fixed mortgage is 3.1%, according to data from Global S&P.
Mortgage interest rate always change, and there is many factors which can influence your interest rate. While some of these are personal factors over which you have control and others are not, it’s important to know what your interest rate might look like when you begin the process of getting a home loan. .
What are the mortgage rates today?
Although mortgage rates fluctuate daily, 2020 was a record low year for mortgage and refinancing rates in the United States. They started to increase in early 2021, but remain relatively low overall.
While low average mortgage and refinance rates are a good sign for a more affordable loan, remember that they never guarantee the rate a lender will offer you. Mortgage rates vary by borrower, depending on factors such as your credit, the type of loan, and the down payment. To get the best rate for you, you will need to collect rates from several lenders.
Average mortgage interest rate by type
There are several types of mortgages available, and they usually differ in the length of the loan in years and whether the interest rate is fixed or adjustable. There are three main types:
- 30 year fixed rate mortgage: The most popular type of mortgage, this mortgage reduces monthly payments by spreading the amount over 30 years.
- 15 year fixed rate mortgage: Interest rates and payments will not change on this type of loan, but it has higher monthly payments since the payments are spread over 15 years.
- 5/1 year adjustable rate mortgage: Also known as ARM 5/1, this mortgage has fixed rates for five years and then an adjustable rate thereafter.
Here’s how these three types of mortgage interest rates stack up:
Average mortgage interest rate per credit score
National rates aren’t the only thing that can influence your mortgage rates – personal information like your credit history can also affect the price you’ll pay to borrow.
Your credit rating is a number calculated based on your borrowing, credit usage, and repayment history, and the score you receive between 300 and 850 acts as a cumulative grade point average of how well you use credit. You can check your credit score online for free. The higher your score, the less you will pay to borrow money. Usually 620 is the minimum credit score required to buy a home, with a few exceptions for government guaranteed loans.
Credit rating company data FICO shows that the lower your credit score, the more you will pay for credit. Here is the average interest rate by credit level for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage of $ 300,000:
According to FICO, only people with a credit score above 660 will truly see interest rates around the national average.
Average mortgage interest rate per year
Mortgage rates are constantly changing, largely influenced by what happens in the economy in general. Generally, mortgage interest rates move independently and in advance the federal funds rate or how much banks pay to borrow. Things like inflation, the bond market, and general housing market conditions can affect the rate you’ll see.
Here’s how the average mortgage interest rate has evolved over time, according to data from the Federal Reserve Board of Saint-Louis:
Throughout 2020, the average mortgage rate has dropped significantly due to the economic impact of the coronavirus crisis. Rates throughout 2020 and through 2021 were lower than rates in the depths of the Great
. Thirty-year fixed mortgage interest rates hit a low of 3.31% in November 2012, according to data from the
Average mortgage interest rate by state
The condition in which you buy your home could influence your interest rate. Here is the average interest rate by type of loan in each state according to data from Global S&P.
What to know before getting a mortgage
What is a mortgage?
A mortgage is a type of secured loan provided by a financial institution to cover the cost of buying a home if you don’t have enough money to prepay. You repay the lender over an agreed period of time, including an additional interest payment, which you can think of as the price of a loan.
Because a mortgage is a secured loan, it means that you are putting your property as collateral. If you fail to make your payments over time, the lender can foreclose or repossess your property. Learn more about how a mortgage works here..
How Much Can I Borrow for a Mortgage?
The amount you can borrow for a mortgage varies from person to person and depends on your financial situation: your credit, your income, and how much money you have available for a down payment. The general rule of thumb for a compliant mortgage (the type most people get, backed by a private company instead of the government) is a 20% deposit. On a $ 400,000 house, that would mean you need $ 80,000 up front.
Note that this calculation may be different if you qualify for another type of mortgage, such as a FHA or VA loan, which require smaller down payments, or if you are looking for a “jumbo loan” of over $ 548,250 in most areas of the United States in 2021 (excluding Alaska, Hawaii, Guam and the US Virgin Islands).
You don’t have to go to the first bank to offer you a mortgage. Like anything else, different providers have different fees, closing costs, and products, so you’ll want to get some estimates before you decide where to get your mortgage.
What is a mortgage rate?
A mortgage rate, also called an interest rate, is the fee your lender charges for lending you money. Your principal (payments on the amount you borrowed) and interest are consolidated into one payment each month.
What is the difference between the APR and the interest rate?
The Mortgage APR is the interest rate plus the costs of things like discount points and costs. This number is higher than the interest rate and is a more accurate representation of what you will actually pay on your mortgage each year.
Why is it important to understand the difference between the interest rate and the APR? When looking for lenders, you might find that one of them charges a lower interest rate, so you think this company is the obvious choice. But you might actually find that the APR is higher than what you can get with another lender because they charge high fees. In reality, it might not be the best deal.
What is a good mortgage interest rate?
In general, you can think of a good mortgage rate as the average rate in your state or below. This will vary depending on your credit score – better scores tend to get better mortgage rates. Overall, a good mortgage rate will vary from person to person, depending on their financial situation. In 2020, the United States saw record mortgage rates across the board, and they are expected to remain low through 2021.
What is a point of call?
A point of call is a commission that you can choose to pay at closing for a lower interest rate on your mortgage. A point of discount typically costs 1% of your mortgage and reduces your rate by 0.25%. So if your rate on a $ 200,000 mortgage is 3.5% and you pay $ 4,000 for two discount points, your new interest rate is 3%.
How do I get a mortgage?
Getting your finances in order is the first step to getting a mortgage. Having a strong financial profile will a) increase your chances of being approved for a loan and b) help you get a lower interest rate. Here are some steps you can take to strengthen your finances:
- Calculate how much home you can afford. The general rule is that your monthly household expenses should be 28% or less of your gross monthly income.
- Find out what credit rating you need. Each type of mortgage loan requires a different credit score, and the requirements may vary by lender. You will likely need a score of at least 620 for a conventional mortgage. You can increase your score by making payments on time, paying off debt and letting your credit age.
- Save for a down payment. Depending on the type of mortgage you get, you may need a down payment of up to 20%. Putting in even more could earn you a better interest rate.
- Check your debt ratio. Your DTI ratio is the amount you pay for your debts each month divided by your gross monthly income. Many lenders want to see a DTI ratio of 36% or less, but it depends on the type of mortgage you get. To lower your ratio, pay off debt or consider ways to increase your income.
Then it’s time to shop around and get quotes from several lenders before deciding which one to use.
How do you compare current mortgage rates?
Since mortgage rates are so individual to the borrower, the best way to find available rates is to get quotes from multiple lenders. If you are at the beginning of the home buying process, apply for prequalification and or prior approval with several lenders to compare and contrast what they are offering.
If you want a broader idea without speaking directly to lenders, you can use the tool below to get a general idea of the rates you might be offered.