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Today's Best Mortgage Rates

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There's a reason the 30-year mortgage is so popular among homebuyers. With a longer repayment schedule, you pay less each month than with a shorter-term loan. The mortgage rate you qualify for helps determine your monthly payment. Below, you can see what current 30-year mortgage rates look like.

How does a 30-year mortgage work?

A 30-year mortgage is a home loan that's paid off in 360 monthly installments. With a fixed 30-year loan, your monthly payment stays the same throughout the life of your loan. Those payments can be fairly easy to work into your budget. However, in the earlier stages of your repayment period, more of your payments go toward the interest portion of your loan rather than its principal. In the latter stages, more will go toward the principal.

Many homeowners choose 30-year mortgages over 15-year loans. 30-year mortgages are popular because they lend to result in lower monthly payments. To understand why, let’s look at an example. Imagine you're looking to borrow $200,000 to buy a home. If you have twice the amount of time to pay that sum back, you'll owe less each month.

Pay attention to interest rates, though. You'll generally be subject to a higher interest rate with a 30-year mortgage.

How to compare 30-year mortgage rates

You have several options for finding a 30-year mortgage. You can work with a mortgage broker who can gather rates for you. Alternatively, you can shop around online with various banks and credit unions.

When comparing different mortgage lenders, pay attention to:

It also helps to look for mortgage lenders who offer pre-qualification. This way, you know what sort of rates and fees to expect. You also won't face a hard inquiry, which could lower your credit score.

Hard inquiries come into play when you officially apply for a loan. If you're going to apply for multiple 30-year mortgages at once, aim to do so within the same 30-day period. Those various hard inquiries will all count as just one. As a result, you won’t see as much of an impact on your credit score.

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Is a 30-year mortgage right for me?

A 30-year mortgage is right for you if you want to keep your monthly payments manageable. Stretching out your repayment period offers more financial flexibility. That leaves you the option to take the money you're not pumping into a mortgage payment and invest it or meet other important financial goals.

With a 30-year mortgage, you'll pay more interest than with a shorter-term loan. But if you invest the money you don't put into your mortgage during that time, your gains could well exceed the extra interest.

If you sign up for a 30-year mortgage, you can always pay down your loan sooner. That way, you can save money on interest and shorten its lifespan. Just make sure your loan doesn't come with a prepayment penalty. With a 30-year mortgage, you get the wiggle room that comes with a lower monthly payment. But you also have the option to accelerate your repayment period if your earnings increase.

The Ascent's best mortgage lenders

If you want to uncover more about the best mortgage lenders for low rates and fees, our experts have created a shortlist of the top mortgage companies. Some of our experts have even used these lenders themselves to cut their costs.

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