A couple of important mortgage rates rose today. Fifteen-year fixed and 30-year fixed mortgage rates both saw growth. The average rate of the most common type of variable-rate mortgage, the 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage, also advanced. Mortgage interest rates are never set in stone, but interest rates are at historic lows. For those looking to secure a fixed rate, now is an optimal time to buy a house. But as always, make sure to first take into account your personal goals and circumstances before buying a house, and shop around for a lender who can best meet your needs.
Here are mortgage rates for different styles of loan
30-year fixed-rate mortgages
The average interest rate for a standard 30-year fixed mortgage is 3.08%, which is an increase of 7 basis points compared to one week ago. (A basis point is equivalent to 0.01%.) Thirty-year fixed mortgages are the most common loan term. A 30-year fixed mortgage will usually have a higher interest rate than a 15-year fixed rate mortgage — but also a lower monthly payment. Although you’ll pay more interest over time — you’re paying off your loan over a longer timeframe — if you’re looking for a lower monthly payment, a 30-year fixed mortgage may be a good option.
15-year fixed-rate mortgages
The average rate for a 15-year, fixed mortgage is 2.38%, which is an increase of 7 basis points from seven days ago. You’ll definitely have a larger monthly payment with a 15-year fixed mortgage compared to a 30-year fixed mortgage, even if the interest rate and loan amount are the same. But a 15-year loan will usually be the better deal, as long as you can afford the monthly payments. These include typically being able to get a lower interest rate, paying off your mortgage sooner and paying less total interest in the long run.
5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages
A 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage has an average rate of 3.11%, a climb of 9 basis points from seven days ago. For the first five years, you’ll typically get a lower interest rate with a 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage compared to a 30-year fixed mortgage. However, changes in the market could cause your interest rate to increase after that time, as detailed in the terms of your loan. If you plan to sell or refinance your house before the rate changes, an adjustable-rate mortgage could make sense for you. But if that’s not the case, you may be on the hook for a significantly higher interest rate if the market rates change.
Mortgage rate trends
We use rates collected by Bankrate, which is owned by the same parent company as CNET, to track rate changes over time. This table summarizes the average rates offered by lenders nationwide:
Current average mortgage interest rates
|Loan type||Interest rate||A week ago||Change|
|30-year fixed rate||3.08%||3.01%||+0.07|
|15-year fixed rate||2.38%||2.31%||+0.07|
|30-year jumbo mortgage rate||2.80%||2.80%||N/C|
|30-year mortgage refinance rate||3.07%||2.99%||+0.08|
Updated on Sept. 2, 2021.
How to shop for the best mortgage rate
You can get a personalized mortgage rate by reaching out to your local mortgage broker or using an online calculator. Make sure to think about your current finances and your goals when looking for a mortgage. Things that affect what mortgage interest rate you might get include your credit score, your down payment, your loan-to-value ratio and your debt-to-income ratio. Having a good credit score, a larger 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 factor into the cost of your house. Make sure to comparison-shop with multiple lenders — for example, credit unions and online lenders in addition to local and national banks — in order to get a mortgage loan that works best for you.
What’s the best loan term?
When picking a mortgage, it’s important to consider the loan term, or payment schedule. The mortgage terms most commonly offered are 15 and 30 years, although you can also find 10-, 20- and 40-year mortgages. Mortgages are further divided into fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages. The interest rates in a fixed-rate mortgage are the same for the duration of the loan; the interest rates for an adjustable-rate mortgage are only stable for a certain amount of time (commonly five, seven or 10 years). After that, the rate adjusts annually based on the market rate.
One important factor to take into consideration when choosing between a fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgage is how long you plan on living in your home. Fixed-rate mortgages might be a better fit if you plan on living in a home for quite some time. While adjustable-rate mortgages may offer lower interest rates upfront, fixed-rate mortgages are more stable over time. If you don’t plan to keep your new home for more than three to 10 years, however, an adjustable-rate mortgage might 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. Be sure to do your research and think about your own priorities when choosing a mortgage.