Today’s mortgage and refinance rates
Average mortgage rates rose sharply again yesterday. Unfortunately, the increases in the last three working days pretty much erased the declines in the last four working days. Nonetheless, these rates remain extremely low by historical standards.
The markets feel calmer this morning. And Mortgage rates could stay stable today or just be on both sides of the neutral line. However, ADP’s earlier private sector employment survey found more new jobs in March than ever in the past five months. And that could add pressure on interest rates later in the day.
Current mortgage and refinancing rates
|program||Mortgage rates||APR *||change|
|Conventional set for 30 years||3.24%.||3,245%.||Unchanged|
|Conventional 15 years fixed||2.5%.||2,619%.||Unchanged|
|Conventional set for 20 years||2.938%.||3.03%.||Unchanged|
|Conventional 10 years fixed||2.089%.||2,237%.||-0.01%|
|Fixed FTA for 30 years||2,999%.||3,662%.||Unchanged|
|Fixed FTA for 15 years||2,777%.||3,365%.||Unchanged|
|5 years ARM FHA||2,668%.||3,264%.||+ 0.01%|
|30 years permanent VA||2.625%.||2.8%.||Unchanged|
|15 years fixed VA||2,375%.||2,697%.||Unchanged|
|5 years ARM VA||2.5%.||2,379%.||Unchanged|
|Prices are provided by our partner network and may not reflect the market. Your rate could be different. Click here for a personalized price offer. See our tariff assumptions Here.|
COVID-19 Mortgage Updates: Mortgage lenders are changing interest rates and rules due to COVID-19. For the latest information on how coronavirus can affect your home loan, click here.
Should You Lock A Mortgage Rate Today?
It is becoming increasingly likely that last week’s falls were more of a slip than a change in direction for the upward trend in mortgage rates. And that’s no surprise.
So my personal recommendations for tariff blocking remain:
- LOCK when you approach 7th Days
- LOCK when you approach 15th Days
- LOCK when you approach 30th Days
- LOCK when you approach 45 Days
- LOCK when you approach 60 Days
But I don’t claim perfect foresight. And your personal analysis could turn out to be as good as mine – or better. So you can be guided by your instincts and your personal risk tolerance.
Market Data Affecting Mortgage Rates Today
Here’s a snapshot of the current status this morning at 9:50 a.m. (ET). The dates, compared to about the same time yesterday, were:
- The Return on 10 year treasury decreased from 1.75% to 1.72% (Good for mortgage rates.) More than any other market, mortgage rates usually tend to follow these particular government bond yields, albeit more recently
- Important stock indices were higher When opening. ((Bad for mortgage rates.Often times, when investors buy stocks, they sell bonds, which drives down the prices of those stocks and increases yields and mortgage rates. The opposite happens when the indices are lower
- Oil prices decreased from $ 60.49 per barrel to $ 60.47. ((Neutral for mortgage rates *.) Energy prices play a major role indicate the creation of inflation and also future economic activity.)
- Gold prices rose to $ 1,692 from $ 1,684 per ounce. ((Neutral for mortgage rates*.) In general, it is better for interest rates when gold rises and worse for interest rates when gold falls. Gold tends to rise when investors worry about the economy. And worried investors tend to cut rates
- CNN Business Fear & Greed Index – Increased from 44 from 100 to 51. (Bad for mortgage rates.) “Greedy” investors Push bond prices down (and interest rates up) as they exit the bond market and invest in stocks, while “fearful” investors do the opposite. So lower readings are better than higher ones
* A change of less than $ 20 in gold prices or 40 cents in oil prices is a fraction of 1%. Hence, we count significant differences in mortgage rates only as good or bad.
Reservations about markets and prices
Before the pandemic and the Federal Reserve’s intervention in the mortgage market, you could look at the numbers above and make a pretty good estimate of what would happen to mortgage rates that day. But that is no longer the case. We’re still on the phone. And are usually correct. But our record for accuracy will not reach its former high level until things settle down.
Use markets only as a rough guide. Because they have to be exceptionally strong or weak to be relied on. But with this restriction so far Mortgage rates are likely to remain stable today or just lie on both sides of the neutral line. Note, however, that intraday fluctuations (when prices change direction during the day) are a common feature these days.
Important information about today’s mortgage rates
Here are some things you need to know:
- Typically, mortgage rates go up when the economy is doing well and go down when they are in trouble. There are exceptions, however. Read ‘How are mortgage rates determined and why should you care?‘
- Only top notch borrowers (with great credit scores, high down payments, and very healthy finances) will get the ultra-low mortgage rates you see advertised
- Lenders vary. Yours may or may not follow the crowd when it comes to daily interest rate movements – though they all usually follow the broader trend over time
- When the daily rate changes are small, some lenders adjust closing costs and leave their rate cards the same
- The refinancing rates are usually close to those for purchases. However, some types of refinancing are higher after a regulatory change
So there is a lot going on here. And no one can claim to know for sure what will happen to mortgage rates in the coming hours, days, weeks, or months.
Are mortgage and refinancing rates rising or falling?
today and so on
Yesterday I discussed the risk factors that could undermine the impending economic boom and cause mortgage rates to fall again. They are all real (along with some I didn’t mention). But I think they are far less likely than continuous economic improvement. And these will bring almost higher rates.
In fact, we are already seeing more signs of an emerging economic recovery. Yesterday, IHS Markit and Paychex announced in a press release:
The latest Paychex | IHS Markit Business Employment Watch shows significant increases in employment growth in all four US regions and in nearly all of the states and metropolitan areas analyzed in the report in March. The Small Business Jobs Index rose to 94.25 in March. While the index remains 4.03 percent below its March 2020 level, the 0.30 percent increase last month was the most significant one-month gain since 2013.
– “Small business job growth shows the first significant gain since the pandemic began in the US,” March 30, 2021
The official monthly employment figures will be released on Friday. And if they tell a similar story to this report (and most analysts think they will) it should fuel the upward trend in mortgage rates.
Of course, this trend is interrupted by the occasional falls. And some of them can take days – like last week. However, I expect the increases will outweigh the decreases overall.
You can find more background information on my further thinking in our latest version Weekend editionwhich is released every Saturday just after 10 p.m. (ET).
For much of 2020, the general trend in mortgage rates was down significantly. According to Freddie Mac, a new weekly all-time low was hit 16 times in the past year.
The latest weekly record low was recorded on January 7th when 30-year fixed rate mortgages stood at 2.65%. But then the prices went up. And Freddie’s March 25 report puts that weekly average at 3.17% (with 0.7 fees and points) compared to 3.09% the previous week. However, the methodology of Freddie’s survey means that not all falls in the past week have been recorded.
Mortgage rate forecasting experts
Looking ahead, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) each have a team of economists devoted to monitoring and forecasting the impact on the economy, housing and mortgage rates.
And here are their current interest rate forecasts for each quarter of 2021 (Q1 / 21, Q2 / 21, Q3 / 21 and Q4 / 21).
The numbers in the table below are for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage. Fannies were updated on March 17th and the MBA updated on March 22nd. But Freddie now publishes quarterly forecasts. The numbers are from mid-January and look clearly stale:
|Forecaster||Q1 / 21||Q2 / 21||Q3 / 21||Q4 / 21|
However, with so many unknowns, the current number of predictions might be even more speculative than usual. And there is certainly a growing prevalence as the year progresses.
Find your lowest price today
Some lenders have been terrified by the pandemic. And they limit their offerings to the most vanilla-flavored mortgages and refinances.
But others remain brave. And you can still likely find the withdrawal refinance, investment mortgage, or jumbo loan that you want. You just need to shop broader.
But of course you should do a lot of shopping in comparison, no matter what type of mortgage you want. As the federal regulatory authority, the Consumer Financial Protection Office says:
Shopping for your mortgage can result in real savings. It may not sound like much, but If you save even a quarter point in interest on your mortgage, you will save thousands of dollars over the life of your loan.
Mortgage rate method
The mortgage reports get interest rates based on selected criteria from multiple credit partners every day. We’ll find an average rate and an annual interest rate for each type of loan that we want to show on our chart. Since we calculate a series of average prices, this will give you a better idea of what you might find in the market. We also calculate average interest rates for the same types of loans. For example, FHA was fixed with FHA. The end result is a good snapshot of the daily rates and how they change over time.