Option Adjustable-Rate Mortgage - Option ARM

AAA

DEFINITION of 'Option Adjustable-Rate Mortgage - Option ARM'

A type of mortgage where the mortgagor (borrower) has several options as to which type of payment is made to the mortgagee (lender). In addition to having the choice of making payments of interest and principal that amounts to those made in conventional mortgages, option ARMs also have alternative payment options where the mortgagor can make significantly smaller payments by making interest-only payments or minimum payments.

INVESTOPEDIA EXPLAINS 'Option Adjustable-Rate Mortgage - Option ARM'

Since many option ARMs offer a low teaser rate, many mortgagors unknowingly refinance their present mortgage in hopes of making lower payments. Unfortunately, once these short-term teaser rates expire, the rates of interest are returned back to those similar to conventional mortgages.

Furthermore, for those unlucky mortgagors that elected to make minimum payments, they will find that the principal owed on their mortgage has actually increased. This is because the value of minimum payments did not entirely cover the mortgage's interest. The uncovered interest would then be added to the mortgage's principal.

RELATED TERMS
  1. Mortgage

    A debt instrument, secured by the collateral of specified real ...
  2. Capped Rate

    An interest rate that is allowed to fluctuate, but which cannot ...
  3. Mortgagor

    An individual or company who borrows money to purchase a piece ...
  4. Conventional Mortgage

    A type of mortgage in which the underlying terms and conditions ...
  5. Mortgagee

    An entity that lends money to a borrower for the purpose of purchasing ...
  6. Teaser Rate

    An initial rate on an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM). This rate ...
RELATED FAQS
  1. Can small investors buy collateralized mortgage obligations (CMOs)?

    Collateralized mortgage obligations (CMOs), which are pools of mortgage-backed securities (MBS), are available to smaller ... Read Full Answer >>
  2. What is the difference between an option-adjusted spread and a Z-spread in reference ...

    Unlike the Z-spread calculation, the option-adjusted spread takes into account how the embedded option in a bond can change ... Read Full Answer >>
  3. What are some historical examples of debt securitization?

    The first debt securities were probably sovereign debt assets that were transferred from the British government to mercantilist ... Read Full Answer >>
  4. What price-to-book ratio is considered average in the chemicals sector?

    You can use Microsoft Excel to calculate the loan-to-value ratio if you have the mortgage amount and appraised value of a ... Read Full Answer >>
  5. How can I use the correlation coefficient to predict returns in the stock market?

    Simple interest is most commonly seen in short-term loans, such as those from payday lenders or pawn shops. You might see ... Read Full Answer >>
  6. Did the repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act contribute to the 2008 financial crisis?

    The repeal of the Glass-Steagall Act was a minor contributor to the financial crisis, if it contributed to the crisis at ... Read Full Answer >>
Related Articles
  1. Insurance

    ARMed And Dangerous

    In a climate of rising interest rates, having an adjustable-rate mortgage can be risky.
  2. Credit & Loans

    Mortgages: Fixed-Rate Versus Adjustable-Rate

    Both of these have advantages and disadvantages depending on your financial needs and prospects.
  3. Home & Auto

    When (And When Not) To Refinance Your Mortgage

    There are both good and bad reasons to refinance. Learn more about both here.
  4. Home & Auto

    Option ARMs: American Dream Or Mortgage Nightmare?

    Option adjustable rate mortgages could make or break your home-buying experience.
  5. Options & Futures

    This ARM Has Teeth

    Find out how to avoid getting bitten when your mortgage rate resets.
  6. Home & Auto

    What Are The Tax Advantages Of Buying A Home?

    Don't forget these deductions and credits that homeowners can use to reduce their tax bill.
  7. Credit & Loans

    How To Finance Foreign Real Estate

    If you don't pay cash, financing real estate abroad is likely to cost more than at home. Watch for local laws and be sure your rights are protected.
  8. Credit & Loans

    Save? (Or Prepay Your Mortgage Or Student Loan?)

    With low-interest rate loans, you might be better off paying just your monthly minimum and investing whatever extra funds you have.
  9. Credit & Loans

    Not a U.S. Citizen? A Home Loan is Still Possible

    Many banks and mortgage companies offer conventional and FHA home loans to non-U.S. citizens, if they can verify their work history and financial status.
  10. Credit & Loans

    Is it Worth Saving Up for a Bigger Down Payment?

    There are numerous low-down-payment mortgage options out there, but sometimes it makes sense to build up your savings so you can borrow less.

You May Also Like

Hot Definitions
  1. Unlevered Beta

    A type of metric that compares the risk of an unlevered company to the risk of the market. The unlevered beta is the beta ...
  2. Moving Average - MA

    A widely used indicator in technical analysis that helps smooth out price action by filtering out the “noise” from random ...
  3. Yield Curve

    A line that plots the interest rates, at a set point in time, of bonds having equal credit quality, but differing maturity ...
  4. Productivity

    An economic measure of output per unit of input. Inputs include labor and capital, while output is typically measured in ...
  5. Variance

    The spread between numbers in a data set, measuring Variance is calculated by taking the differences between each number ...
  6. Terminal Value - TV

    The value of a bond at maturity, or of an asset at a specified, future valuation date, taking into account factors such as ...
Trading Center