Many mortgage rates surged today to the highest they’ve been since early 2020, including 15-year fixed and 30-year fixed mortgage rates. We also saw a significant rise in the average rate of 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages. Mortgage rates have been quite low over the last period, making it a good time for prospective homebuyers to lock in a fixed rate. But rates are dynamic and are projected to continue to rise. Before you buy a house, remember to consider your personal needs and financial situation, and speak with multiple lenders to find the best one for you.
30-year fixed-rate mortgages
The 30-year fixed-mortgage rate average is 3.98%, which is a growth of 21 basis points as seven days ago. (A basis point is equivalent to 0.01%.) The most common loan term is a 30-year fixed mortgage. A 30-year fixed rate mortgage will usually have a lower monthly payment than a 15-year one — but typically a higher interest rate. 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.
15-year fixed-rate mortgages
The average rate for a 15-year, fixed mortgage is 3.34%, which is an increase of 19 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 higher monthly payment. But a 15-year loan will usually be the better deal, as long as you can afford the monthly payments. You’ll typically get a lower interest rate, and you’ll pay less interest in total because you’re paying off your mortgage much quicker.
5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages
A 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage has an average rate of 3.99%, an addition of 24 basis points compared to a week ago. You’ll typically get a lower interest rate (compared to a 30-year fixed mortgage) with a 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage in the first five years of the mortgage. But 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. Because of this, an adjustable-rate mortgage might be a good option if you plan to sell or refinance your house before the rate changes. But if that’s not the case, you might be on the hook for a significantly higher interest rate if the market rates change.
Mortgage rate trends
While 2022 kicked off with low mortgage rates, they have seen an uptick recently. There are two major factors at play here: increasing inflation rates and a growing economy. That said, rates can always rise and fall for a variety of reasons. The spread of omicron, for instance, kept rates relatively low throughout December and the start of the new year. Overall, rates are expected to go up in 2022, particularly with the Federal Reserve’s decision to reduce its bond purchases and increase interest rates.
We use information collected by Bankrate, which is owned by the same parent company as CNET, to track daily mortgage rate trends. This table summarizes the average rates offered by lenders across the country:
Average mortgage interest rates
|30-year jumbo mortgage rate||2.85%||2.84%||+0.01|
|30-year mortgage refinance rate||4.01%||3.76%||+0.25|
Rates as of Feb. 11, 2022.
How to find the best mortgage rates
When you are ready to apply for a loan, you can connect with a local mortgage broker or search online. When shopping around for home mortgage rates, take into account your goals and current finances. A range of factors — including your down payment, credit score, loan-to-value ratio and debt-to-income ratio — will all affect your mortgage rate. Having a higher credit score, a higher down payment, a low DTI, a low LTV, or any combination of those factors can help you get a lower interest rate. Beyond the mortgage rate, factors including closing costs, fees, discount points and taxes might also impact the cost of your house. Be sure to shop around with multiple lenders — like credit unions and online lenders in addition to local and national banks — in order to get a mortgage that’s right for you.
What is a good loan term?
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. Mortgages are further divided into fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgages. For fixed-rate mortgages, interest rates are fixed for the life of the loan. Unlike a fixed-rate mortgage, the interest rates for an adjustable-rate mortgage are only set for a certain amount of time (most frequently five, seven or 10 years). After that, the rate adjusts annually based on the current interest rate in the market.
One important factor to consider when choosing between a fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgage is how long you plan on staying in your home. If you plan on staying long-term in a 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 have plans to keep your new home for more than three to 10 years, however, an adjustable-rate mortgage could give you a better deal. There is no best loan term as a general rule; it all depends on your goals and your current financial situation. It’s important to do your research and think about your own priorities when choosing a mortgage.