Today's Mortgage Rates -- October 21, 2021: Most Rates Are Up

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Ready to get a mortgage? Check out current rates to see if it's a good time.

Mortgage rates are mostly higher today. Here's what they look like on Oct. 21, 2021:

Mortgage Type Today's Interest Rate
30-year fixed mortgage 3.276%
20-year fixed mortgage 2.944%
15-year fixed mortgage 2.541%
5/1 ARM 3.213%

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

30-year mortgage rates

The average 30-year mortgage rate today is 3.276%, up 0.006% from yesterday. At today's rate, you'll pay principal and interest of $437.00 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 2.944%, down 0.013% from yesterday. At today's rate, you'll pay principal and interest of $552.00 for every $100,000 you borrow. Though your monthly payment will go up by $115.00 with a 20-year, $100,000 loan versus a 30-year loan of the same amount, you'll save $24,806.00 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 2.541%, up 0.015% from yesterday. At today's rate, you'll pay principal and interest of $669.00 for every $100,000 you borrow. Compared to the 30-year loan, your monthly payment will be $232.00 higher per $100,000 in mortgage principal. Your interest savings, however, will amount to $36,795.00 over the life of your repayment period per $100,000 of mortgage debt.

5/1 ARMs

The average 5/1 ARM rate is 3.213%, up 0.074% from yesterday. A 5/1 ARM will guarantee you the same interest rate for five years. But you may end up staying in your home much longer than that, and over time, your rate could climb. If you don't want to take that chance, you may want to consider a fixed-rate mortgage. Right now, you can lock in a 30-year fixed loan at a rate that's not much higher than where the 5/1 ARM is sitting.

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 very attractive, historically speaking. 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. While today's rates are pretty 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

If you're ready to apply for a mortgage, shop around with different lenders to see what rates they offer you. But do your rate shopping quickly. If you apply with several lenders over a 14- to 30-day period, your credit score will sustain less damage than it might if you spread out those inquiries over a longer period of time. And the last thing you want is a hit to your credit score when you're trying to borrow a large sum of money to buy a home.

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