Current Mortgage Interest Rates, March 18, 2022 | Rates rise after Fed rate hike

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The most important mortgage rates have all increased today. Fixed 30-year and 15-year mortgage rates were higher. For variable rates, the 5/1 Variable Rate Mortgage (ARM) also climbed higher.

In 2022, mortgage rates have nearly reached levels not seen since before the pandemic, after nearly two years of record high rates.
Refinancing or buying your home doesn’t have to be put on hold. Although rates are higher than they were in 2021, 30-year fixed rates are still much lower than they were just a few years ago.

The fact is, a homebuyer’s decision involves more than just an interest rate. It’s a lifestyle decision. Despite the impact of the interest rate market on mortgages, it is not prudent to base your decision on just a few basis points. The most important thing to consider is setting a realistic home buying budget and sticking to it.

Let’s take a look at current mortgage rates, past rates, and what it all means for borrowers.

The averages of the 30-year fixed, 15-year fixed and 5/1 MRAs are:

Mortgage Rate Forecast: What’s Driving Mortgage Rate Changes?

Mortgage rates have risen considerably since the beginning of the year. Two of the factors behind the rate hike are high inflation — the highest in 40 years — and an economy recovering from the pandemic. The Federal Reserve is expected to spend much of the year raising its benchmark short-term interest rate and making other changes to deal with high inflation — moves that could drive up borrowing costs .

Other trends have led to more uncertainty and volatility in the market. One is Russia’s war in Ukraine, which has had repercussions on global financial markets, including rising gas prices and falling inventories. Another is the looming prospect of a resurgence of COVID-19. While the Omicron variant appears to have generally declined in the United States, the future of the virus is impossible to predict with certainty.

Among the experts, there is almost a consensus that mortgage rates will rise throughout 2022. In the short term, anticipate a lot of volatility.

Current Mortgage Rates: Is It a Good Time to Buy a Home Right Now?

Despite the dramatic increases, mortgage rates remain at relatively low levels and are still considered historically favorable mortgage rates.

Low interest rates can help offset rising house prices. But as rates rise, this will also contribute to the rising cost of ownership. Prices have risen significantly from pre-pandemic levels, with a combination of limited supply of homes, higher construction costs and massive buyer demand driving the spike.

It’s also important to remember that while mortgage rates are significant and a difference of a point or two can mean a lot of money on a 30-year mortgage, experts advise against trying to time the market to get the best mortgage rate. Focus on finding the right home, and do it when your personal lifestyle and financial situation indicate it’s the right time. Shop around for a mortgage lender to get the best deal possible at that time – lender rates can vary widely.

Why is it important to look at the 30-year fixed mortgage rate history?

Currently, rates are higher than they were in the low rate years of 2020 and 2021, but are still not too high if you zoom out before that time. Rates were well above 4% in 2018-19. A “good” rate before 2008 was around 5%. Despite crossing the psychological barrier of 4%, mortgage interest rates remain very good in the long term.

Bankrate survey data is generally used on this page, but Freddie Mac survey data is shown here. Freddie Mac is a government sponsored organization that collects mortgage data. Rates shown here may differ from rates on other charts, but historically they generally follow each other. A look back at historic Freddie Mac rates can give you a good idea of ​​how current rates compare to those of the past two decades.

Watch out for loan fees

When you take out a mortgage, your decision should factor in loan closing costs. These fees include loan origination fees, prepaid interest and property taxes, and can range from 3-6% of the loan amount. . This strategy can save you money in the short term, so it’s worth considering if there’s a chance you’ll sell the home or refinance in five to eight years.

Today’s Mortgage Refinance Rates

Refinancing has become a little more expensive today as 30-year and 15-year fixed refinance mortgages have seen their average rates increase. If you’re considering a 10-year refinance loan, just know that average rates have also increased.

The refinancing averages for 30-year, 15-year and 10-year loans are:

Compare national mortgage rates from various lenders.

30-year fixed mortgage interest rate

The median interest rate for a standard 30-year fixed mortgage is 4.48%, up 16 basis points from last week.

15-year mortgage rates

The median rate for a 15-year fixed mortgage is 3.70%, up 15 basis points from the same time last week.

The monthly payment on a 15-year fixed rate mortgage is, without a doubt, a much higher monthly payment than you would get on a 30-year mortgage with the same interest rate. However, 15-year loans have significant benefits: you’ll pay thousands less in interest and pay off your loan much sooner.

5/1 ARM Mortgage Rates

A 5/1 ARM has an average rate of 3.12%, an increase of 20 basis points from seven days ago.

An ARM is ideal for borrowers who will refinance or sell before the rate changes. If not, their interest rates could end up being remarkably higher after a rate adjustment.

For the first five years, a 5/1 ARM will typically have a lower interest rate than a 30-year fixed mortgage. Keep in mind that your rate could increase and your payment could increase by hundreds of dollars per month.

How we calculate our mortgage rates

To see where mortgage rates are going, we rely on information collected by Bankrate, which is owned by the same parent company as NextAdvisor. The Daily Rates survey focuses on mortgages where the borrower has a FICO score of 740 or higher, a net worth of 20% or higher, and the home is owner-occupied.

Current average rates shown below and based on the Bankrate Mortgage Rate Survey:

Rates exact as of March 18, 2022.

Pro tip

Plug and play your desired mortgage interest rate and the rest of your loan details into our mortgage calculator to see an estimated monthly payment.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) About Mortgage Rates:

How to benefit from the lowest mortgage rate?

There are two key components to getting the lowest interest rate: the loan-to-value ratio (LTV) and your credit score.

Nowadays, a credit score above 750 will help you get the best rate. However, even a score of 700+ can give you a decent rate reduction compared to a lower credit score. Once your score begins to climb above 800, the mortgage rate reduction will no longer be significant.

Mortgage providers offer the biggest discounts on mortgage rates to borrowers who are considered less risky. A large down payment is a sign to lenders that you are more committed and less likely to default on your loan. A down payment of 20% or more will save you money in two ways: with a lower mortgage rate, and you can avoid paying for private mortgage insurance (PMI).

Is it a good time to lock in my mortgage rate?

Mortgage rates go up and down daily, and it’s impossible to time the market. It is therefore wise to lock in your interest rate now, because overall rates are historically favorable.

A rate lock will only last for a certain amount of time, usually 30 to 60 days. If you’re having a problem with closing and it looks like your foreclosure rate is expiring, you should talk to your lender. It may offer a lock extension, however, you may need to pay a fee for this privilege.

Leslie M. Gill