Today's Mortgage Refinance Rates -- September 23, 2021: Rates Up for Most Loans

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Are mortgage refinance rates going up or down? See today's average rates to decide if it's a good time to refinance.

On Sept. 23, 2021, average mortgage refinance rates are up for two out of three loan types. Compare today's rates to your current home loan to see if it may save you money to refinance. Remember, though, there will be upfront closing costs to pay so you'll need to at least break even on them to end up better off.

Here are today's average rates so you can get an idea if refinancing makes sense for you:

Mortgage Type Today's Interest Rate
30-year fixed refinance loan 3.133%
20-year fixed refinance loan 2.799%
15-year fixed refinance loan 2.372%

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

30-year mortgage refinance rates

The average 30-year mortgage refinance loan rate today is 3.133%, unchanged from yesterday's average. For each $100,000 refinanced at today's average rate, your monthly principal and interest payment would add up to $423. During your entire loan repayment period, you'd pay total interest costs of $54,372 per $100,000 refinanced.

20-year mortgage refinance rates

The average 20-year mortgage refinance loan rate today is 2.799%, up 0.027% from yesterday's average of 2.772%. You'd be looking at a principal and interest payment of $545 per $100,000 refinanced at today's average rate. Your total interest costs over the life of the refinance loan would equal $30,702 per $100,000 borrowed.

This loan is a good option if you want to prioritize interest savings over time but not make your monthly payments too high. You'll pay less interest than with the 30-year loan (although monthly payments will be higher). But you won't cut your payment time as much as with the 15-year loan, which comes with a considerably higher monthly payment due to the shortened time frame to become debt free.

15-year mortgage refinance rates

The average 15-year mortgage refinance loan rate today is 2.372%, up 0.014% from yesterday's average of 2.358%. If you refinance at today's average rate, your monthly principal and interest payment would be $661 per $100,000 borrowed. The total costs of interest would add up to $18,940 per $100,000 refinanced at today's average rate.

If you want to pay the lowest amount over time, this loan is your best option. You will get the lowest rate and pay interest for a very short time so you'll save considerably over the 30-year and 20-year loan. However, the tradeoff is much higher monthly payments, so be sure that's affordable for you.

Should you refinance your mortgage right now?

Refinancing your mortgage can be a smart financial decision if you're able to reduce your interest rate and lower your monthly payments by securing a new home loan. However, there are a few key things to think about before you refinance.

First, if you extend your loan repayment term, you could end up paying higher total interest costs over time than with your existing mortgage. This can occur even if you qualify for a lower interest rate since you'd be paying interest over a longer time. You can avoid this issue by choosing a refinance loan with a shorter repayment term. Or you may decide you're willing to pay more interest over the life of your loan in exchange for a reduced monthly payment.

Second, you will have to consider closing costs, which are the upfront fees you'll be charged when you refinance a mortgage. The Ascent's research revealed that closing costs on a refinance loan for a median value home total anywhere from $5,000 to $12,500. However, your closing fees will depend on the amount of your home loan, your location, and your lender.

You should eventually make up for these closing costs due to your lower monthly payments -- but that can take time. If you save $200 per month by refinancing and pay $6,000 in closing costs, you would take 2.5 years to break even. It's important to do the math and consider whether you'll stay in your home long enough for refinancing to pay off.

In general, it is a good idea to refinance if you don't plan to move in the next few years and you can reduce your mortgage interest rate by 1% or more. With mortgage refinance rates near record lows, many borrowers will find it's a good time to refinance. Compare rates from the best mortgage refinance lenders to get some personalized offers and decide whether securing a new home loan now is right for you.

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