Today's mortgage and refinance rates
Average mortgage rates rose significantly yesterday, as we predicted. On 30-year fixed-rate mortgages, they're still below 3%. But it's been a while since they were that high.
And early signs suggest it Mortgage rates could rise again by a few inches today or maybe keep calm. The hikes were first tempered at 10 a.m. ET, making forecasting more difficult than yesterday. Retail sales for January this morning were far better than expected. And that used to fuel optimism in the markets.
Find and lock a low rate (February 18, 2021)
Current mortgage and refinancing rates
Conventional set for 30 years
Conventional 15 years fixed
Conventional 20 years set
Conventional 10 years fixed
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 (February 18, 2021)
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?
In the eleven working days of this month so far, mortgage rates have fallen to just three, according to the Mortgage News Daily. And those rates are now significantly higher than they were on February 1st.
However, it is far too early to view these moves as an uptrend. It could be the beginning of one. But it wouldn't be a surprise if they fell behind to some extent in the coming hours, days, or weeks.
The question is: is it worth taking a risk? Most mortgage rates are still below 3% today. So you stay in an extremely low area. And locking it would mean relatively little financial gain now compared to earlier in the month.
Personally, I'm still cautious. And my personal recommendations for tariff blocking remain:
LOCK when you approach 7th DaysLOCK when you approach 15th DaysLOCK 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'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 10-year Treasury yield increased from 1.26% to 1.29%. ((Bad for mortgage ratesMore than any other market, mortgage rates usually tend to follow these particular government bond yields, albeit more recentlyImportant stock indices were lower when opened. ((Good 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 have lower oil prices decreased from $ 59.93 per barrel to $ 59.88. ((Neutral for mortgage rates * because energy prices play a major role in causing inflation and also indicate future economic activity.) Gold prices dropped from $ 1,792 an ounce to $ 1,783. ((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. The CNN Business Fear & Greed Index fell from 70 to 100 to 62. (Good 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 only count significant differences in mortgage rates 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. 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. Because they have to be exceptionally strong (rates are likely to rise) or weak (they could fall) to be relied on. But with this restriction so far Mortgage rates are likely to rise slightly or remain stable today.
Find and lock a low rate (February 18, 2021)
Important Notes About Today's Mortgage Rates
Here are some things you need to know:
The continued intervention of the Fed in the mortgage market (well over $ 1 trillion) should continue to put pressure on these rates. But it can't always work miracles. And read: “For once, the Fed affects mortgage rates. Here's why: "If you want to understand this part of the action, 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-rated borrowers (with great credit scores, high down payments, and very healthy finances) will get the ultra-low mortgage rates for which listed lenders vary – yours may or may not follow the crowd when it comes to daily interest rate movements although 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 near these 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
I am Expect mortgage rates to rise or stay stable today. But as always, that could change during the day.
This morning's retail sales for January should put investors in a good mood. Economists had forecast an increase of 1.2%, but the actual increase was 5.3%. However, at the time of our publication, some of that sentiment seemed to be changing.
But maybe that shouldn't come as a surprise. Yesterday's positivity levels rarely last long. And whatever it is today, the chances are of some negative news that will lower mortgage rates. The questions are: when will they come? And will they be enough to reverse the recent rate hikes?
For more background on how I continue to think, check out our latest weekend edition, which is published just after 10 a.m. (ET) every Saturday.
The general trend in mortgage rates has been falling significantly in recent months. According to Freddie Mac, a new weekly all-time low was hit 16 times in the past year.
The latest such weekly record was set on January 7th when it was 2.65% for 30-year fixed rate mortgages. But then interest rates rose, if only modestly. And in Freddie's February 11 report, the weekly average was 2.73% – just like the week before and the week before.
Mortgage rate forecasting experts
Looking ahead, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) each have a team of economists dedicated 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 refer to fixed-rate mortgages with a term of 30 years. And they were all released between January 14th and 20th:
Q1 / 21
Q2 / 21
Q3 / 21
Q4 / 21
However, with so many unknowns, the current number of predictions may be even more speculative than usual. And in the course of the year, the spread will certainly increase.
Find your lowest price today
Some lenders have been terrified 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 refinancing, 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 might 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 (February 18, 2021)
Mortgage rate method
The mortgage reports receive daily interest rates based on selected criteria from multiple credit partners. 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.