Current Mortgage Rates -- February 19, 2021: Rates Are Up

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Here's what mortgage rates look like today. Should you apply now?

House keys hanging on a key hook with Today's Mortgage Rates graphic.

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Here's what mortgage rates look like today. Should you apply now?

Today's mortgage rates are up across the board. This is what they look like now:

Mortgage Type Today's Interest Rate
30-year fixed mortgage 2.924%
20-year fixed mortgage 2.655%
15-year fixed mortgage 2.296%
5/1 ARM 2.865%

Data source: The Ascent's national mortgage interest rate tracking.

30-year mortgage rates

The average 30-year mortgage rate today is 2.924%, up 0.026% from yesterday. At today's rate, you'll pay principal and interest of $417.73 for every $100,000 you borrow. That doesn't include added expenses like property taxes and homeowners insurance premiums.

20-year mortgage rates

The average 20-year mortgage rate today is 2.655%, up 0.012% from yesterday. At today's rate, you'll pay principal and interest of $537.34 for every $100,000 you borrow. Though your monthly payment will go up by $119.61 with a 20-year, $100,000 loan versus a 30-year loan of the same amount, you'll save $21,422.11 in interest over the course of your repayment period for every $100,000 you borrow.

15-year mortgage rates

The average 15-year mortgage rate today is 2.296%, up 0.016% from yesterday. At today's rate, you'll pay principal and interest of $657.04 for every $100,000 you borrow. Compared to the 30-year loan, your monthly payment will be $239.31 higher per $100,000 in mortgage principal. Your interest savings, however, will amount to $32,115.81 over the life of your repayment period per $100,000 of mortgage debt.

5/1 ARMs

The average 5/1 ARM rate is 2.865%, up 0.086% from yesterday. With a 5/1 ARM, you lock in your initial interest rate for five years, but from there, it can adjust once a year, either upward or downward. While the 5/1 ARM has dropped to a lower level than the 30-year fixed mortgage, the difference in rate isn't so substantial that it's worth taking on the risk of a climbing rate. You may want to stick with a fixed 30-year loan with a slightly higher interest rate for the guarantee that your rate won't soar over time. Or, you can see if you can swing a 20- or 15-year mortgage, which are both available at a lower rate than the 5/1 ARM right now.

Should I lock in my mortgage rate now?

A mortgage rate lock guarantees you a specific interest rate for a certain period of time -- usually 30 days, but you may be able to secure your rate for up to 60 days. You'll generally pay a fee to lock in your mortgage rate, but that way, you're protected if rates climb between now and when you close on your home loan.

If you plan to close on your home within the next 30 days, then it pays to lock in your mortgage rate based on today's rates -- especially since they're still very attractive. But if your closing is more than 30 days away, you may want to choose a floating rate lock instead for what will usually be a higher fee, but one that could save you money in the long run. A floating rate lock lets you secure a lower rate on your loan if rates fall before you close on your mortgage, and while today's rates are quite competitive, we don't know if rates will go up or down over the next few months. As such, it pays to:

  • LOCK if closing in 7 days
  • LOCK if closing in 15 days
  • LOCK if closing in 30 days
  • FLOAT if closing in 45 days
  • FLOAT if closing in 60 days

If you're ready to apply for a mortgage, reach out to a few different lenders so you can compare offers. You may find that one lender offers a lower rate or more affordable closing costs than another. Also, give your finances a quick check-up before you start applying for home loans. Make sure your credit score is in good shape, you don't have too much debt, and you have funds available for a down payment. These are some of the main factors lenders look at when giving out mortgage offers, and the more trustworthy a borrower you appear, the greater your chances of getting a great deal.

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