A few notable mortgage rates moved higher today. The average interest rates for both 15-year fixed and 30-year fixed mortgages both made gains. At the same time, average rates for 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgages also increased. Mortgage interest rates are never set in stone, but interest rates are the lowest they’ve been in years. For those looking to secure a fixed rate, now is an optimal time to buy a home. But as always, make sure to first think about your personal goals and circumstances before buying a home, and talk to multiple lenders to find a lender who can best meet your needs.
Compare home loan rates from various lenders
30-year fixed-rate mortgages
For a 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage, the average rate you’ll pay is 3.24%, which is an increase of 4 basis points compared to one week 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 2.51%, which is an increase of 1 basis point from the same time last week. 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. However, as long as you’re able to afford the monthly payments, there are several benefits to a 15-year loan. These typically include 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 3.28%, an uptick of 5 basis points compared to last week. You’ll usually get a lower interest rate (compared to a 30-year fixed mortgage) with a 5/1 ARM in the first five years of the mortgage. But you may end up paying more after that time, depending on the terms of your loan and how the rate adjusts with the market rate. For borrowers who plan to sell or refinance their house before the rate changes, an adjustable-rate mortgage could be a good option. If not, changes in the market might significantly increase your interest rate.
Mortgage rate trends
We use information collected by Bankrate, which is owned by the same parent company as CNET, to track rates changes over time. This table summarizes the average rates offered by lenders across the country:
Today’s mortgage interest rates
|Loan term||Today’s Rate||Last week||Change|
|30-year mortgage rate||3.24%||3.20%||+0.04|
|15-year fixed rate||2.51%||2.50%||+0.01|
|30-year jumbo mortgage rate||2.98%||3.00%||-0.02|
|30-year mortgage refinance rate||3.31%||3.27%||+0.04|
Rates accurate as of March 9, 2021.
How to find personalized mortgage rates
To find a personalized mortgage rate, speak to your local mortgage broker or use an online mortgage service. When looking into home mortgage rates, think about your goals and current finances. Specific interest rates will vary based on factors including credit score, down payment, debt-to-income ratio and loan-to-value ratio. Generally, you want a higher credit score, a larger down payment, a lower DTI and a lower LTV to get a lower interest rate. Besides the interest rate, factors including closing costs, fees, discount points and taxes might also affect the cost of your home. Be sure to talk to a variety of lenders — including local and national banks, credit unions and online lenders — and comparison shop to find the best mortgage for you.
How does the loan term impact my mortgage?
One important factor to consider when choosing a mortgage is the loan term, or payment schedule. The most common loan terms are 15 years and 30 years, although 10-, 20- and 40-year mortgages also exist. Mortgages are further divided into fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgages. For fixed-rate mortgages, interest rates are the same 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 (commonly five, seven or 10 years). After that, the rate adjusts annually based on the market rate.
One thing to consider when choosing between a fixed-rate and adjustable-rate mortgage is how long you plan on staying in your house. For people who plan on living long-term in their new house, fixed-rate mortgages may be the better option. While adjustable-rate mortgages might 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, though, an adjustable-rate mortgage could give you a better deal. The “best” loan term all all depends on your own situation and goals, so make sure to think about what’s important to you when choosing a mortgage.
The editorial content on this page is based solely on objective, independent assessments by our writers and is not influenced by advertising or partnerships. It has not been provided or commissioned by any third party. However, we may receive compensation when you click on links to products or services offered by our partners.