Today's mortgage and refinance rates
Average mortgage rates fell last Friday as we predicted. And conventional loans started this morning at 3% (3% APR) for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage.
More good news on the vaccine front came out overnight. And we expect Mortgage rates are set to rise today, even if only slightly and briefly.
Find and Lock a Low Rate (Nov 23, 2020)
Current mortgage and refinancing rates
Conventional 30 years fixed
Conventional 15 years fixed
Conventional 5-year ARM
Fixed FTA for 30 years
Fixed FTA for 15 years
5 years ARM FHA
30 years permanent VA
15 years fixed VA
5 years ARM VA
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.
Find and Lock a Low Rate (Nov 23, 2020)
COVID-19 Mortgage Updates: Mortgage lenders are changing interest rates and rules due to COVID-19. For the latest information on the impact of Coronavirus on your home loan, click here.
Should You Lock A Mortgage Rate Today?
Nobody knows the ideal time to set a mortgage rate. There is just too much going on to be completely certain.
But now is not a bad time at all. After all, there is a good chance that mortgages for purchase are at an all-time low. And those for refinancing are not far behind.
But I wouldn't lock today if I'm not close to closing. And that's because I'm suspecting even lower rates are on the horizon, although that is probably not the case today.
See "Are Mortgage and Refinance Rates Going Up or Down?" (Below) for more. In the meantime, my personal recommendations on tariff blocking are:
LOCK when you approach 7th DaysLOCK when you approach 15th DaysHOVER when you approach 30th DaysHOVER when you approach 45 DaysHOVER when you approach 60 Days
But with so much uncertainty right now, your instincts could easily turn out to be as good as mine – or better. So let your gut and your personal risk tolerance guide you.
Market Data Affecting Mortgage Rates Today
Here is the current status at 9:50 a.m. (ET) this morning. The dates, compared to roughly the same time last Friday morning, were:
The 10-year Treasury yield rose from 0.85% to 0.86%. (Bad for mortgage rates because it fell after a spike yesterday.) More than any other market, mortgage rates usually tend to follow these particular government bond yields, though less recentlyImportant stock indices were higher when opened. (Bad for mortgage rates.Often times, when investors buy stocks, they sell bonds, which lowers the prices of those bonds and increases yields and mortgage rates. The opposite happens when the indices are lower. Oil prices rose to $ 42.81 from $ 41.52 per barrel. (Bad for mortgage rates * because energy prices play a major role in causing inflation and also indicate future economic activity.) Gold prices fell from $ 1,877 an ounce to $ 1,862. (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 – Jumped from 66 from 100 to 75. (Bad for mortgage rates.) "Greedy" investors push bond prices down (and interest rates up) when they exit the bond market and invest in stocks, while "fearful" investors do the opposite. Lower readings are therefore 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 idea of what would happen to mortgage rates that day. However, this is no longer the case. The Fed is a big player now and a few days can overwhelm investor sentiment.
Use markets only as a rough guide. They have to be exceptionally strong (rates are likely to rise) or weak (they could fall) to be relied on. But with this restriction they search OK for mortgage rates today.
Find and Lock a Low Rate (Nov 23, 2020)
Important Notes About Today's Mortgage Rates
Here are some things you need to know:
The continued Fed interventions in the mortgage market (well over $ 1 trillion) should continue to put pressure on these rates. But it can't always work miracles. So expect both short-term increases and decreases. And read: “For once, the Fed affects mortgage rates. Here's why: "If you want to understand this aspect of what is going on, mortgage rates usually go up when the economy is doing well and go down when they're in trouble." There are exceptions, however. Read about how mortgage rates are determined and why you should care. Only top notch borrowers (with great credit scores, high down payments, and very healthy finances) will get the ultra-low mortgage rates for which the listed lenders vary. Yours may or may not follow the crowd when it comes to daily interest rate movements – though they usually all follow the broader trend over time. When interest rate changes are small, some lenders adjust closing costs and leave their interest rate cards the same. Refinancing rates are usually close to these for purchases. However, some types of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac refinancing are currently significantly higher after a change in regulations
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?
I think Mortgage rates are likely to rise today. This is due to the good news about another COVID-19 vaccine. This time it is from British pharmaceutical giant AstraZeneca that gave an effectiveness rate of 90%. Studies have shown that it is particularly suitable for protecting the elderly and that it is easy to store and transport.
Note, however, that the good news about vaccines means that the market has been short-lived so far: from a few days to a few hours.
And I suspect lower rates are on the horizon. In the midst of the dire pandemic, it's hard to imagine what good economic news will emerge that will likely propel it up significantly – at least for a long time.
An exception could be President Donald Trump, who admits the President's race. This would remove some uncertainty and raise interest rates. But even this bump may not last long.
Of course, some periods of higher rates are inevitable. These are responses to past economic reports and news cycles. But October reports are an old story because the coronavirus is spreading so quickly – and changing the economic landscape. And those for this month probably won't make much to cheer about.
When the economy is bad, mortgage rates almost always fall. That's why they're now at their lowest level ever. How likely do you think it is that the economy will suddenly look better?
The general trend in mortgage rates has been falling significantly in recent months. Freddie Mac said a new all-time low was set for each of the weeks ending October 15 and 22 and November 5 and 19. Last Thursday's record low was the 13th this year.
Note, however, that Freddie's numbers only relate to buying mortgages and ignore refinancing. And if you averaged both, the rates have been consistently higher than the all-time low since a record high in August. The gap between the two has been widened by a controversial regulatory change.
Mortgage Forecast 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 the final quarter of 2020 (Q4 / 20) and the first three of 2021 (Q1 / 21, Q2 / 21 and Q3 / 21).
Note, however, that fannies (published November 17th) and the MBA (also November 17th) are updated monthly. However, Freddies are now released quarterly. And its latest was released on October 14th.
The numbers in the table below are for 30-year fixed rate mortgages:
ForecasterQ4 / 20Q1 / 21Q2 / 21Q3 / 21Fannie Mae 2.8% 2.8% 2.8% 2.8% Freddie Mac 3.0% 3.0% 3.0% 3.0% MBA 2.9% 3.0% 3.0% 3.2%
So the predictions vary considerably. You pay your money …
Find your lowest price today
Some lenders have been made nervous by the pandemic. And they only limit their offerings to the most vanilla-flavored mortgages and refinances.
But others remain brave. And chances are you can still find the withdrawal refinance, investment mortgage, or jumbo loan you want. You just need to shop broader.
But of course, no matter what type of mortgage you want, you should do a lot of shopping in comparison. As a federal regulator, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau says:
Shopping for your mortgage can result in real savings. It may not sound like much, but if you save even a quarter point on your mortgage, you will save thousands of dollars over the life of your loan.
Check your new plan (November 23, 2020)
Mortgage rate method
The mortgage reports receive interest rates based on selected criteria from multiple credit partners on a daily basis. 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.