Today's Mortgage Rates & Trends - December 28, 2021: Rates climb

First post-Christmas reading shows mortgage rates on the rise, nearing 2021 high

Mortgage rates bumped higher Monday, building on a recent ascent that has now brought the 30-year fixed-rate average ten basis points higher than a week ago, and within just five points of its highest rate of 2021.

National Averages of Lenders' Best Rates
Loan Type Purchase Refinance
30-Year Fixed 3.24% 3.35%
FHA 30-Year Fixed 3.02% 3.28%
Jumbo 30-Year Fixed 3.16% 3.33%
15-Year Fixed 2.46% 2.56%
5/1 ARM 2.53% 2.78%
National averages of the lowest rates offered by more than 200 of the country's top lenders, with a loan-to-value ratio (LTV) of 80%, an applicant with a FICO credit score of 700-760, and no mortgage points.
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Today's National Mortgage Rate Averages

After climbing four of the last five market days, the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage average is back in range of its highest mark of 2021. Rising three points Monday to 3.34%, the current average sits five basis points below its calendar year high of 3.39%, a level hit just before Thanksgiving.

The 15-year average rose slightly more, gaining five basis points Monday to reach 2.53%, and placing it a tenth of a percentage point below its YTD high. Meanwhile, the Jumbo 30-year average rose three points to 3.29%, which is close to two-tenths of a percentage point below its 2021 high of 3.47%.

Compared to early August, however, when a major rate dip took most averages to five-month lows, the 30-year average is currently 45 basis points more expensive, while the 15-year and Jumbo 30-year averages are 32 and 23 points higher, respectively.

Refinance rates showed similar increases Monday, with the 30-year refinance average rising four points. Rates to refinance fixed-rate loans are currently 10 to 18 points higher than their new purchase counterparts.

Important:

The rates you see here generally won’t compare directly with teaser rates you see advertised online, since those rates are cherry-picked as the most attractive. They may involve paying points in advance, or may be selected based on a hypothetical borrower with an ultra-high credit score or taking a smaller-than-typical loan given the value of the home.

National Averages of Lenders' Best Rates - New Purchase
Loan Type New Purchase Daily Change
30-Year Fixed 3.24% -0.05
FHA 30-Year Fixed 3.02% -0.08
VA 30-Year Fixed 3.04% -0.11
Jumbo 30-Year Fixed 3.16% -0.09
20-Year Fixed 3.05% -0.06
15-Year Fixed 2.46% -0.05
Jumbo 15-Year Fixed 3.08% -0.02
10-Year Fixed 2.42% -0.06
10/1 ARM 2.75% -0.37
10/6 ARM 3.63% -0.13
7/1 ARM 2.68% +0.06
Jumbo 7/1 ARM 2.16% -0.03
7/6 ARM 4.03% +0.12
Jumbo 7/6 ARM 2.57% -0.13
5/1 ARM 2.53% +0.03
Jumbo 5/1 ARM 2.01% -0.03
5/6 ARM 3.98% +0.04
Jumbo 5/6 ARM 2.61% No Change
National Averages of Lenders' Best Rates - Refinancing
Loan Type Refinance Daily Change
30-Year Fixed 3.35% -0.06
FHA 30-Year Fixed 3.28% -0.11
VA 30-Year Fixed 3.41% -0.13
Jumbo 30-Year Fixed 3.33% -0.10
20-Year Fixed 3.18% -0.05
15-Year Fixed 2.56% -0.05
Jumbo 15-Year Fixed 3.37% -0.05
10-Year Fixed 2.54% -0.05
10/1 ARM 3.04% -0.41
10/6 ARM 4.14% -0.05
7/1 ARM 2.67% +0.01
Jumbo 7/1 ARM 2.39% -0.03
7/6 ARM 4.24% -0.04
Jumbo 7/6 ARM 2.85% -0.13
5/1 ARM 2.78% -0.16
Jumbo 5/1 ARM 2.24% -0.03
5/6 ARM 4.26% -0.05
Jumbo 5/6 ARM 2.79% No Change

Lowest Mortgage Rates by State

The lowest mortgage rates available vary depending on the state where originations occur. Mortgage rates can be influenced by state-level variations in credit score, average mortgage loan term, and size, as well as individual lenders' varying risk management strategies.

These rates are surveyed directly from over 200 top lenders.

What Causes Mortgage Rates to Rise or Fall?

Mortgage rates are determined by a complex interaction of macroeconomic and industry factors, such as the level and direction of the bond market, including 10-year Treasury yields; the Federal Reserve's current monetary policy, especially as it relates to funding government-backed mortgages; and competition between lenders and across loan types. Because fluctuations can be caused by any number of these at once, it's generally difficult to attribute the change to any one factor.

Macroeconomic factors have kept the mortgage market relatively low for much of this year. In particular, the Federal Reserve has been buying billions of dollars of bonds in response to the pandemic's economic pressures, and continues to do so. This bond-buying policy (and not the more publicized federal funds rate) is a major influencer on mortgage rates.

On Dec. 15, the Fed announced that, in light of stronger and more persistent inflation pressure than originally expected, it will speed up its timeline for throttling Fed bond buying, reducing the amount they purchase by a larger increment each month than initially planned. This so-called taper began in late November.

The Fed's rate and policy committee, called the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC), meets every 6-8 weeks. Their next scheduled meeting will be held Jan. 25-26.

Methodology

The national averages cited above were calculated based on the lowest rate offered by more than 200 of the country's top lenders, assuming a loan-to-value ratio (LTV) of 80% and an applicant with a FICO credit score in the 700-760 range. The resulting rates are representative of what customers should expect to see when receiving actual quotes from lenders based on their qualifications, which may vary from advertised teaser rates.

For our map of the best state rates, the lowest rate currently offered by a surveyed lender in that state is listed, assuming the same parameters of an 80% LTV and a credit score between 700-760.