Several benchmark mortgage rates receded today. The average for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage decreased, but the average rate on a 15-year fixed increased. The average rate on 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages, or ARMs, the most popular type of variable rate mortgage, ticked downward.
Today’s mortgage interest rates
Loan term Today’s Rate Last week Change
30-year mortgage rate 3.03% 3.04% -0.01
15-year mortgage rate 2.58% 2.57% -0.01
30-year jumbo mortgage rate 3.10% 3.10% N/C
30-year mortgage refinance rate 3.14% 3.17% -0.03
Rates accurate as of October 27, 2020.
Rates for mortgages change daily, but they continue to represent a bargain compared to rates before the Great Recession. If you’re in the market for a mortgage, it may make sense to lock if you see a rate you like. Just don’t do so without shopping around first.
Compare mortgage rates in your area now.
30-year fixed mortgages
The average rate for the benchmark 30-year fixed mortgage is 3.03 percent, a decrease of 1 basis point from a week ago. This time a month ago, the average rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage was higher, at 3.07 percent.
At the current average rate, you’ll pay $423.22 per month in principal and interest for every $100,000 you borrow. That’s down $0.54 from what it would have been last week.
You can use Bankrate’s mortgage calculator to estimate your monthly payments and see the effect of adding extra payments. It will also help you calculate how much interest you’ll pay over the life of the loan.
15-year fixed mortgages
The average 15-year fixed-mortgage rate is 2.58 percent, up 1 basis point over the last week.
Monthly payments on a 15-year fixed mortgage at that rate will cost around $671 per $100,000 borrowed. That’s clearly much higher than the monthly payment would be on a 30-year mortgage at that rate, but it comes with some big advantages: You’ll come out several thousand dollars ahead over the life of the loan in total interest paid and build equity much more quickly.
The average rate on a 5/1 adjustable rate mortgageis 3.06 percent, down 1 basis point over the last week.
These loan types are best for those who expect to sell or refinance before the first or second adjustment. Rates could be materially higher when the loan first adjusts, and thereafter.
Monthly payments on a 5/1 ARM at 3.06 percent would cost about $425 for each $100,000 borrowed over the initial five years, but could ratchet higher by hundreds of dollars afterward, depending on the loan’s terms.
Where rates are headed
To see where Bankrate’s panel of experts expect rates to go from here, check out our rate trends page.
Want to see where rates are currently? Lenders nationwide respond to Bankrate.com’s weekday mortgage rates survey to bring you the most current rates available. Here you can see the latest marketplace average rates for a wide variety of purchase loans:
Rate lock advice and recommendations
A rate lock guarantees your interest rate for a specified period of time. It’s common for lenders to offer 30-day rate locks for a fee or to include the price of the rate lock into your loan. Some lenders will lock rates for longer periods, even exceeding 60 days, but those locks can be expensive. In today’s volatile market, some lenders will lock an interest rate for only two weeks because they don’t want to take on unnecessary risk.
With a rate lock, if interest rates rise, you’re locked into the guaranteed rate. Some lenders have a floating-rate lock option, which allows you to get a lower rate if interest rates fall before you close your loan. In a falling rate environment, a float-down lock could be worth the cost. Because there is no guarantee of where mortgage rates will head in the future, it may be smart to lock in a low rate instead of holding out on rates for potentially decline further.
It’s important to keep in mind: During the pandemic, all aspects of real estate and mortgage closings are taking much longer than usual. Expect the closing on a new mortgage to take at least 60 days, and expect refinancing to take at least a month.
What causes mortgage rates to change
A number of economic factors influence mortgage rates. Among them are inflation and unemployment. Higher inflation typically leads to higher mortgage rates. The opposite is also true; when inflation is low, mortgage rates typically are as well. As inflation increases, the dollar loses value. That drives investors away from mortgage-backed securities (MBS), which causes the prices to decrease and yields to increase. When yields move higher, rates become more expensive for borrowers.
A strong economy usually means more people buying homes, which drives demand for mortgages. This increased demand can push rates higher. The opposite is also true; less demand can trigger a drop in rates.
What are current mortgage rates?
The current mortgage rate environment has been unstable because of the coronavirus pandemic, but generally rates have been low. For a while, some lenders were increasing rates because they were struggling to deal with the demand. In general, however, rates are consistently below 4 percent and even dipping into the mid to low 3s. This is an especially good time for people with good to excellent credit to lock in a low rate for a purchase loan. However, lenders are also raising credit standards for borrowers and demanding higher down payments as they try to dampen their risks.
Are mortgage rates rising or falling?
Mortgage rates have fallen to record lows in recent months. Where they’ll go from here is nearly impossible to predict. Much depends on the direction of the economy, and how well public health officials can contain the coronavirus pandemic. Most experts predict that if the economy continues to bounce back and drugmakers develop a successful vaccine, mortgage rates will increase. On the other hand, if the economy struggles because of coronavirus-related setbacks, mortgage rates will remain at record lows or fall even further.
How do mortgage rates affect homebuyers?
In this housing boom, mortgage rates have been a mixed bag for buyers. Low rates give borrowers more buying power. A $300,000 loan at 4 percent equates to a monthly payment of $1,432. If rates fall to 3 percent, the payment plunges to $1,265.
One downside, however, is that a significant decline in mortgage rates can help push up home prices. Indeed, home values have increased in recent months.
Here’s one way to see the offsetting effects of soaring home prices and plunging mortgage rates. Say you decided not to buy a $300,000 home a year ago, when the 30-year mortgage rate was at about 3.75 percent. Your down payment at 20 percent would have been $60,000, and your monthly payment would have been $1,111.
The price of the same house has jumped to $335,000 today. However, you can get a 30-year mortgage at 3 percent. As a result, your monthly payment rises only slightly, to $1,130. However, you’ll have to come up with an extra $7,000 to make a 20 percent down payment.
Is now a good time to buy a house?
There’s never a straightforward answer to this question. It always depends. Do you have a reliable income, a good credit score and money saved for a down payment and repairs? If you can answer all of those questions affirmatively, you’re ready to buy.
However, the pandemic has led to an even greater shortage of homes. That’s caused a bidding war and rising prices. Those trends mean it can be a frustrating market for buyers.
Methodology: The rates you see above are Bankrate.com Site Averages. These calculations are run after the close of the previous business day and include rates and/or yields we have collected that day for a specific banking product. Bankrate.com site averages tend to be volatile — they help consumers see the movement of rates day to day. The institutions included in the “Bankrate.com Site Average” tables will be different from one day to the next, depending on which institutions’ rates we gather on a particular day for presentation on the site.
To learn more about the different rate averages Bankrate publishes, see “Understanding Bankrate’s on-site rate averages.”
Mortgage refinance rates today
Today’s 30-year mortgage rates
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Check rates for specific loan types
LOAN TERM PURCHASE RATES REFINANCE RATES
The chart above links out to loan-specific pages to help you learn more about rates by mortgage type.
30-Year Loan 30-Year Mortgage Rates 30-Year Refinance Interest Rates
20-Year Loan 20-Year Mortgage Interest Rates Current 20-Year Refinance Rates
15-Year Loan Current 15 Year Mortgage Rates 15-Year Mortgage Refinance Rates
10-Year Loan Current 10 Year Mortgage Rates Current 10-Year Refinance Rates
FHA Loan FHA Mortgage Interest Rates Current FHA Loan Refinance Rates
VA Loan VA Loan Interest Rates VA Mortgage Refinance Rates
ARM Loan Adjustable Rate Mortgage Rates ARM Refinance Rates
Jumbo Loan Current Jumbo Mortgage Rates Jumbo Refi Interest Rates