Today's Mortgage Rates -- March 29, 2021: Rates Drop for Most Loans

by Christy Bieber | Updated July 19, 2021 - First published on March 29, 2021

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Hand piling stacks of coins next to model home with Today's Mortgage Rates graphic.

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Here's how mortgage rates are trending on March 29, 2021.

On Monday March 29 average mortgage rates fell for most loans. Homeowners should shop carefully for a home loan. While rates were mostly down today, they have climbed above recent record lows. However, they still remain competitive -- especially for well-qualified borrowers.

Check out today's average mortgage rates to get an idea of what rates you can expect:

Mortgage Type Today's Interest Rate
30-year fixed mortgage 3.296%
20-year fixed mortgage 3.005%
15-year fixed mortgage 2.576%
5/1 ARM 3.102%

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

30-year mortgage rates

The average 30-year mortgage rate today is 3.296%, down 0.01% from Friday's average of 3.306%. If you borrow at today's average rate, you'd have a monthly principal and interest payment of $438 per $100,000 borrowed. Total interest costs would add up to $57,585 per $100,000 borrowed over the life of the loan.

20-year mortgage rates

The average 20-year mortgage rate today is 3.005%, up 0.009% from Friday's average of 2.996%. A mortgage loan at today's average interest rate would cost you $555 per $100,000 borrowed. Total interest costs would be $33,164 per $100,000 in mortgage debt over the life of the loan.

The interest costs are lower over time on this loan than with the 30-year fixed-rate option due to the shortened payoff time. You aren't paying interest as long. Of course, because you're making so many fewer payments, each one is higher.

15-year mortgage rates

The average 15-year mortgage rate today is 2.576%, down 0.007% from Friday's average of 2.583%. At today's average rate, the monthly principal and interest payment would add up to $670 per $100,000 in mortgage debt. During your entire loan repayment period, you'd pay total interest costs of $20,667 per $100,000 borrowed.

With an even shorter payoff timeline, as well as a much lower rate, the 15-year loan is the most affordable over time. However, because you have a very short time to repay your loan, you must pay much more each month than with the 30-year loan.

5/1 ARMs

The average 5/1 ARM rate is 3.102%, down 0.031% from Friday's average of 3.133%. Although this rate is below the 30-year fixed-rate loan, it's not guaranteed for the life of the loan. It can begin adjusting after five years and may adjust higher, resulting in an increase in monthly payments. You need to weigh the risk of rising rates against the fact that your starting rate is lower when you decide if an ARM makes sense for you.

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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