As of today, Nov. 30, 2023, the benchmark 30-year fixed mortgage rate is 7.52%, FHA 30-year fixed is 7.10%, jumbo 30-year fixed is 6.82%, and 15-year fixed is 6.84%. These fixed-rate loan averages are not the teaser rates you may see advertised online and based on our methodology should be more representative of what customers could expect to be quoted depending on their qualifications. You can learn more about what makes our rates different in the Methodology section of this page.
Because mortgage rates and home loan terms can differ, it’s important to compare rates, closing costs, loan terms, and the customer service reputation of the lender before completing the application process for a home loan. We’ve compiled the best rates for the various types of mortgages and common questions you may have to help you understand factors that might have affected mortgage rates in general and for your specific situation, including things like changes in economic factors or news or the Federal Reserve's central bank interest rate policy.
Our Expert Picks for the Best Mortgage Lenders
|Best Mortgage Lenders|
|Rocket Mortgage (Quicken Loans)||Best Overall|
|CMG Financial||Best for First-Time Homebuyers|
|American Pacific Mortgage||Best for Customized Mortgages|
|loanDepot||Best for Cash-Strapped Borrowers|
|PNC Bank||Best for Jumbo Loan Borrowers|
|U.S. Bank||Best for Refinancing|
|Navy Federal Credit Union||Best for Military Borrowers|
|AimLoan||Best for Transparency|
Today's Mortgage Rates
|FHA 30-Year Fixed||7.10%||7.67%|
|VA 30-Year Fixed||7.16%||7.89%|
|Jumbo 30-Year Fixed||6.82%||6.82%|
|FHA 15-Year Fixed||6.77%||6.77%|
|Jumbo 15-Year Fixed||6.73%||6.96%|
|Jumbo 7/6 ARM||7.69%||7.87%|
|Jumbo 5/6 ARM||6.69%||6.68%|
Trends in Mortgage Rates
Trends in mortgage rates are influenced by complex factors, such as the Federal Reserve's interest rate policy, the rate of employment, the Consumer Price Index, and the yields of 10-year treasury bonds. Mortgage rates are not directly tied to any of these factors but are indirectly influenced by their current levels and consensus predictions on how they will trend in the near future.
Beginning in March 2022 the Federal Reserve began raising the federal funds rate to counter pent-up, demand-driven inflation that followed the global pandemic. The aggressive and consistent rate increases—marking a cumulative 525 basis points over the last 18 months—have had the impact, if only indirectly, of pushing mortgage rates dramatically higher over the last two years.
The Fed has opted to hold rates steady at its last two meetings, which concluded Sept. 20 and Nov. 1. But Fed Chair Jerome Powell has made it clear that another rate increase is still possible at a future meeting. The Fed’s next rate announcement will be made on Dec. 13.
If you're ready to pursue a mortgage, you can use our ranking of the best mortgage lenders to assess your options.
What Is a Mortgage?
A mortgage is a type of loan used to purchase or maintain a home, land, or other types of real estate. The borrower agrees to pay the lender over time, typically in a series of regular payments that are divided into principal and interest. The property then serves as collateral to secure the loan.
How Does a Mortgage Work?
Individuals and businesses use mortgages to buy real estate without paying the entire purchase price up front. The borrower repays the loan plus interest over a specified number of years until they own the property free and clear. Most traditional mortgages are fully-amortizing. This means that the regular payment required will stay the same, but different proportions of principal vs. interest will be paid over the life of the loan with each payment. Typical mortgage terms are for 30 or 15 years.
Types of Mortgages
There numerous types of mortgages in the mortgage market, including those from private mortgage lenders as well as government backed loan programs that purchase, guarantee and securitize mortgages in the secondary mortgage market like those by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), known as FHA loans, or the Federal National Mortgage Association (Fannie Mae).
Conventional mortgages can be fixed-rate with terms varying from 10 to 30 years or variable-rate with terms up to 10 years. Jumbo mortgage loans that exceed the Federal Housing Finance Agency's conforming loan limit of $726,200 for 2023, cannot be purchased, guaranteed, or securitized by Fannie Mae or the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac). Jumbo loans offer the same fixed and variable rate terms as conventional mortage loans, though their interest rates are typically lower.
Mortgage Options for First Time Homebuyers
While the majority of mortgage originations occur in the private market, government-backed mortgages occupy an important niche and provide access to first-time homebuyers and to borrowers who could not otherwise qualify or afford the terms of traditional mortgages. Government-backed loans like FHA loans, state FHA loans, USDA loans (USDA guaranteed loans), and VA loans (backed by the Department of Veteran Affairs) can offer significant advantages to qualifying borrowers, including lower interest, longer terms, and a lower percentage of down payment (or no down payment) compared to conventional loans. For these types of loans that have lower down payment options, there can be a requirement for the borrower to acquire private mortgage insurance, however.
How to Use Our Mortgage Rate Table
Our mortgage rate table is designed to help you compare mortgage rates for the type of home loan you’re being offered by lenders to know if they are better or worse than the best rates available. These rates are benchmark rates for those with good credit and not the teaser rates that make everyone think they will get the lowest rate available. Of course, your personal credit profile will be a significant factor in what rate you actually get quoted, but you will be able to begin comparison shopping for either new purchase or refinance rates with confidence before you choose a mortgage lender.
How to Get the Best Mortgage Rates
There are several things to keep in mind when shopping for mortgage rates to ensure you get the best deal:
- Know your credit score.
- Estimate how much down payment you can make using our mortgage calculator.
- Estimate how long you plan to stay in your home.
- Determine the best type and term of mortgage, whether fixed-rate or variable-rate, that is most affordable based on the factors above.
- Use our rate table to help you identify whether lenders are offering you a competitive rate based on your credit profile.
- Avoid opening new types of credit accounts like credit cards or personal loans before applying for a mortgage, as these can temporarily lower your credit score
What Is a Good Mortgage Rate?
A good mortgage rate, which is usually represented as the lowest available rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage, will depend on the borrower. Lenders will advertise the lowest rate offered but yours will depend on factors like your credit history, income, other debts, and your down payment. For instance, a good mortgage rate for someone who has a low credit score tends to be higher than for someone who has a higher credit score.
It’s important to understand what will affect your individual rate and work towards optimizing your finances so you can receive the most competitive rate based on your financial situation
The Difference Between Interest Rate and APR
The advertised rate or nominal interest rate for a loan, whether for a mortgage, personal loan or credit card, is the basic cost of borrowing principal stated as a percentage. The annual percentage rate (APR), reflected as a percentage, is the total cost of the loan including the fees and all other costs associated with the loan, in this case a mortgage loan, such as the origination fee and discount points. The APR, therefore, almost always calculates to a higher interest rate than the nominal interest rate since fees and other costs are factored into the rate including the interest rate.
How Do I Qualify for Better Mortgage Rates?
Qualifying for better mortgage rates can help you save money, potentially tens of thousands of dollars over the life of the loan. Here are a few ways you can ensure you find the most competitive rate possible:
- Raise your credit score: A borrower’s credit score is a major factor in determining mortgage rates. The higher the credit score, the more likely a borrower can get a lower rate. It’s a good idea to check your credit score to see how you can improve it, whether that’s by making on-time payments or disputing errors on your credit report.?
- Increase your down payment: Most lenders offer lower mortgage rates for those who make a larger down payment. This will depend on the type of mortgage you apply for, but sometimes, putting down at least 20% could get you more attractive rates.?
- Lower your debt-to-income ratio: Also called DTI, your debt-to-income ratio looks at the total of your monthly debt obligations and divides it by your gross income. Usually, lenders don't want a DTI of 43% or higher, as that may indicate that you may have challenges meeting your monthly obligations as a borrower, as adding a mortgage payment could potentially put you underwater. The lower your DTI, the less risky you will appear to the lender, which will be reflected in a lower interest rate.?
Are Mortgage Rates Rising or Falling?
Mortgage rates have been rising steadily since the Federal Reserve began raising the federal discount rate starting in March of 2022. Since that time the fed funds rate has risen by 525 basis points. Mortgage rates are not directly tied to the movement of the fed funds rate, however, and are determined by complex factors like interactions in the government bond market, specifically involving the yield on 10-year treasury bonds, Fed monetary policy in funding government-backed mortgages and competitive factors among mortgage lenders. So, it is impossible to say if mortgage rates will continue to rise or if they will remain steady or even begin to fall at any given point. Mortgage rates have reached record highs recently, though, and Fed monetary policy to address stubborn inflation for the rest of 2023 will likely have an influence on rates, if only indirectly.
How Are Mortgage Rates Set?
Mortgage rates are set based on a few factors, economic forces being one of them. For instance, lenders look at the prime rate—the lowest rate banks offer for loans—which typically follows trends set by the Federal Reserve’s federal funds rate, which is currently set at a range of 5.25% - 5.50%. Fed Funds rates are typically stated in this type of range which varies that rate by 0.25 percent.
The 10-year Treasury bond yield can also reveal market trends. If the bond yield goes up, mortgage rates tend to go up, and vice versa. The 10-year Treasury yield is usually the best standard to judge mortgage rates. That’s because many mortgages are refinanced or paid off after 10 years even if the norm is a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage loan.
Factors that the borrower can control are their credit score and the home equity that will be created by the down payment amount. Since a lender sets rates based on the risk they may take, borrowers who are less creditworthy or have a lower down payment amount may be quoted higher rates. In other words, the lower the risk, the lower the rate for the borrower.
"Our last mortgage was during a previous high-rate environment, in the midst of the financial crisis of 2008 when rates were in the mid-6% range. Luckily, there were numerous opportunities to refinance at lower rates in the subsequent years." -Ben Woolsey, Investopedia Associate Editorial Director
Learn More About Mortgages
How Big of a Mortgage Can I Afford?
In general, homeowners can afford a mortgage that’s two to two-and-a-half times their annual gross income. For instance, if you earn $80,000 a year, you can afford a mortgage from $160,000 to $200,000. Keep in mind that this is a general guideline and you need to look at additional factors when determining how much you can afford such as your lifestyle.
First, your lender will determine what it thinks you can afford based on your income, debts, assets, and liabilities. However, you need to determine how much you’re willing to spend, your current expenses—most experts recommend not spending more than 28% of your gross income on housing costs. Lenders will also look at your DTI, meaning that the higher your DTI, the less likely you’ll be able to afford a bigger mortgage.?
Don’t forget to include other costs aside from your mortgage, which includes any applicable HOA fees, homeowners’ insurance, property taxes, and home maintenance costs. Using a mortgage calculator can be helpful in this situation to help you figure out how you can comfortably afford a mortgage payment.
What Is a Mortgage Rate?
A mortgage rate is the amount of interest determined by a lender to be charged on a mortgage. These rates can be fixed—meaning the rate is set based on a benchmark rate—for the duration of the borrower’s mortgage term, as in the case of a 15-year fixed rate mortgage, or variable based on the mortgage terms and current rates. The rate is one of the key factors for borrowers when seeking home financing options since it’ll affect their monthly payments and how much they’ll pay throughout the lifetime of the loan.?
Do Different Mortgage Types Have Different Rates?
Mortgage rates can be different depending on the loan type. For instance, fixed-rate mortgages tend to be higher than adjustable-rate ones. However, adjustable-rate mortgages tend to have lower rates during a predetermined time, then fluctuates as it adjusts to current market conditions.? Generally, the shorter the amount of time to repay the loan, better known as the loan term, the lower the rate. So, 30-year mortgages usually have higher rates than 15 or 10-year mortgage rates.
What Are Mortgage Points?
Also known as discount points, this is a one-time fee or prepaid interest borrowers purchase to lower the interest rate for their mortgage. Discount points equate to percentage points - so, one discount point costs 1% of your mortgage amount, or $1,000 for every $100,000 and will lower the rate by a quarter of a percent, or 0.25. For example, if the interest rate is 7%, purchasing one mortgage point will reduce the rate to 6.75%, which can save a significant amount of interest expense in your monthly mortgage payment and over the life of the loan.
What Are the Best Mortgage Rates Right Now?
The best mortgage rates right now will depend on a variety of factors, like if your credit score, location, and type of mortgage. Depending on where you live in the country you may be able to get a lower rate if you have excellent credit. Rates are also lower on different types of mortgages such as those with larger loan amounts, shorter terms, or adjustable rates.
Will Mortgage Rates Drop in 2024?
Mortgage rates could go down in 2024 if the Federal Reserve begins to lower the fed funds rate at any of its meetings next year. However, the central bank's monetary policy is dependent on whether stubborn inflation continues to ease and approach the Fed's desired target of 2% and the central bank has signaled that it will remain vigilant with its rate-setting actions as long as necessary to achieve that goal.
How Much Will I Need for a Down Payment?
The minimum you’ll need to put down will depend on the type of mortgage. Many lenders require a minimum of 5% to 20%, whereas others like government-backed ones require at least 3.5%. The VA loan is the exception with no down payment requirements.?
Generally, the higher your down payment, the lower your rate may be. Homeowners who put down at least 20% will be able to save the most.?
What Is the Best Way to Get the Lowest Mortgage Rate?
The best way to ensure you qualify for the lowest mortgage rate is to know and optimize your credit score by keeping your debt to income level as low as possible, preferably below 28%, and not applying for any other types of loans in the six months preceding any mortgage applications, paying all your bills on time and making sure there are no mistakes on your credit report. Making a down payment of at least 20% on conventional loans (keeping your loan-to-value at least 80%) is also an important factor in qualifying for good mortgage interest rates. Then, shopping around with different types of lenders, both online and in your area, will also help to secure the lowest possible rate.
Why You Should Trust Us
Investopedia collects the best rates on actual closed mortgages through a third-party data provider from more than 200 companies every business day to identify the most competitive rates and terms in the nation as well as in the states in which our readers reside. Investopedia launched in 1999, and has been helping readers find the best mortgage rates since 2021.
How We Track the Best Mortgage Rates
In order to assess mortgage rates, we first needed to create a credit profile. This profile included a credit score ranging from 700 to 760 with a property loan-to-value ratio (LTV) of 80%. With this profile, we averaged the lowest rates offered by more than 200 of the nation’s top lenders. As such, these rates are representative of what real consumers will see when shopping for a mortgage.?
The same credit profile was used for the best state rates map. We then found the lowest rate currently offered by a surveyed lender in that state.?
Keep in mind that mortgage rates may change daily and this average rate data is intended to be for informational purposes only. A person’s personal credit and income profile will be the deciding factors in what loan rates and terms they are able to get. Loan rates do not include amounts for taxes or insurance premiums and individual lender terms will apply.?
U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. "Ten Things Most Veterans Don’t Know About VA Home Loans."
When to Buy a Home Based on Mortgage Rates
What Is a Mortgage? Types, How They Work, and Examples
How to Shop for Mortgage Rates
5 Things You Need to Be Pre-Approved for a Mortgage
17 Mistakes First-Time Homebuyers Should Avoid
Got a Good Mortgage Rate? Lock It in!
How Mortgage Points Work
How Much Money Do I Need to Put Down on a Mortgage?
Understanding Different Mortgage Rates & How to Get the Best One
Fixed vs. Adjustable-Rate Mortgage: What's the Difference?
Adjustable-Rate Mortgage: What Happens When Interest Rates Go Up
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Compare the Best 10-Year Mortgage Rates of 2023
Compare the Best Jumbo Mortgage Rates for 2023
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What Are the Main Types of Mortgage Lenders?
Applying to Mortgage Lenders: How Many Are Necessary?
Mortgage Brokers: Advantages and Disadvantages
What to Know When Dealing With Mortgage Loan Officers and Brokers
How Rocket Mortgage (Formerly Quicken Loans) Works
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