Current Mortgage Rates -- October 18, 2021: Some Rates Up a Bit

by Christy Bieber | Published on Oct. 18, 2021

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Model home surrounded by stacks of coins and money bag with Today's Mortgage Rates graphic.

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Thinking about buying a home? Here's how much a mortgage could cost based on average rates on Oct. 18, 2021.

Average mortgage rates are stable for a couple loan types today and up for a couple others. These average rates are what a typical borrower would pay. Your personal rate will be determined based on your finances, but average rates can give you a good idea of what a home loan might cost with different loan types, including fixed-rate and adjustable-rate loans.

Check out average mortgage loan interest rates for Monday, Oct. 18:

Mortgage Type Today's Interest Rate
30-year fixed mortgage 3.263%
20-year fixed mortgage 2.925%
15-year fixed mortgage 2.503%
5/1 ARM 3.097%

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

30-year mortgage rates

The average 30-year mortgage rate today is 3.263%, unchanged from Friday's average. A loan at today's average rate would cost you $436 per month in principal and interest for each $100,000 you borrow. During your entire loan repayment period, you'd pay total interest costs of $56,931 per $100,000 borrowed.

20-year mortgage rates

The average 20-year mortgage rate today is 2.925%, unchanged from Friday's. If you borrow at today's average rate, you'd have a monthly principal and interest payment of $551 per $100,000 borrowed. For each $100,000 you borrow at today's average rate, total interest costs would add up to $32,204.

Interest is lower over time on this loan than the 20-year, both because of the reduced rate and the fact you don't pay interest for as long. This results in much lower total borrowing costs over time. However, the short payoff time is also the reason for the high monthly payments, which are well above what you'd pay on the 30-year loan.

15-year mortgage rates

The average 15-year mortgage rate today is 2.503%, up 0.023% from Friday's average of 2.480%. For each $100,000 borrowed at today's average rate, your total monthly principal and interest payment would be $667. Your total interest costs over the life of the loan would equal $20,047 per $100,000 borrowed.

This loan has an even lower interest rate and lower total interest costs than the 20-year loan, but the monthly payments on it are much higher than with the 20-year or 30-year fixed-rate options. Be sure they're affordable before you decide a 15-year mortgage is the best choice.

5/1 ARMs

The average 5/1 ARM rate is 3.097%, up 0.034% from Friday's average of 3.063%. After five years, this rate can adjust along with a financial index. Since it could move up, you take the risk of your total interest costs and monthly payment becoming more expensive.

Should I lock my mortgage rate now?

A mortgage rate lock guarantees you a certain interest rate for a specified 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 in case rates climb between now and when you actually close on your mortgage.

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 so competitive. 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 mortgage if rates fall prior to your closing, and while today's rates are still quite low, 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

To find out what rates are available to you, compare rates from at least three of the best mortgage lenders before locking in.

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