Mortgage rates saw a sizable decline Wednesday, their first major reversal since surging most days this calendar year. Still, almost every mortgage average is well above its highest point of 2021, and most sit at levels not seen since spring 2020.
|National Averages of Lenders' Best Rates|
|FHA 30-Year Fixed||3.60%||3.76%|
|Jumbo 30-Year Fixed||3.32%||3.50%|
Today's National Mortgage Rate Averages
Mortgage rates have exploded higher this year, but Wednesday blunted their ascent. The 30-year fixed-rate average dropped a substantial eight basis points to 3.64%. Still, the average is more than a quarter percentage point above where it ended 2021, and matches levels not registered since early in the pandemic.
Rates on 15-year loans have been on a similar path since the New Year, and also gave up ground Wednesday, shedding six points to 2.81%. Like the 30-year average, the 15-year average is the highest we've seen since April 2020.
Meanwhile, the Jumbo 30-year rate has shown fewer dramatic surges this month, and has held steady the last three days. But on Wednesday it dropped 12 basis points to 3.32%, taking it now 15 basis points lower than its high-water mark of last year.
Compared to early August, when a major rate dip took most averages to five-month lows, the 30-year average is still a whopping 75 basis points more expensive, while the 15-year and Jumbo 30-year averages are up 60 and 26 points, respectively.
Refinance rates behaved similarly Monday, with the 30-year average losing nine points and the 15-year five points, while the Jumbo 30-year plummeted 12 points. Like new purchase rates, the 30-year and 15-year refinance averages have moved above their 2021 highs, while the Jumbo 30-year refinance average still sits lower. The cost to refinance fixed-rate loans is currently 11 to 18 points higher than new purchase loans.
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|
|FHA 30-Year Fixed||3.60%||-0.05|
|VA 30-Year Fixed||3.54%||-0.25|
|Jumbo 30-Year Fixed||3.32%||-0.12|
|Jumbo 15-Year Fixed||3.19%||-0.12|
|Jumbo 7/1 ARM||2.43%||-0.01|
|Jumbo 7/6 ARM||2.84%||-0.12|
|Jumbo 5/1 ARM||2.28%||-0.01|
|Jumbo 5/6 ARM||2.73%||-0.13|
|National Averages of Lenders' Best Rates - Refinancing|
|Loan Type||Refinance||Daily Change|
|FHA 30-Year Fixed||3.76%||-0.18|
|VA 30-Year Fixed||3.99%||-0.05|
|Jumbo 30-Year Fixed||3.50%||-0.12|
|Jumbo 15-Year Fixed||3.37%||-0.13|
|Jumbo 7/1 ARM||2.72%||-0.02|
|Jumbo 7/6 ARM||3.10%||-0.13|
|Jumbo 5/1 ARM||2.57%||-0.02|
|Jumbo 5/6 ARM||2.91%||-0.13|
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.
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.
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.