Today's 30-year mortgage rates plummet below 6% | March 20, 2023
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Based on data compiled by Credible, mortgage rates for home purchases have fallen across all key terms since last Friday.

What this means: Mortgage rates for home purchases fell significantly for all key terms over the weekend, with 30-year rates diving below the 6% mark. Borrowers may want to lock in a 30-year rate today, ahead of likely rate fluctuations. But homebuyers who want to take advantage of interest savings may want to consider 20-year rates, which are more than a quarter of a percentage point lower than rates for a 30-year term.

Based on data compiled by Credible, mortgage refinance rates have fallen for all key terms since last Friday.

What this means: Mortgage refinance rates plunged for all key repayment terms over the weekend, with 30-year rates falling to their lowest levels since December 2022. Homeowners who want to stick with a longer repayment term may want to lock in a 30-year refinance today, while rates are under 6%. But homeowners who want to take advantage of interest savings may want to consider 10- or 15-year rates, which are the lowest available at 5.25%. Shorter terms do come with higher monthly payments, but they allow homeowners to be mortgage-free sooner. 

How mortgage rates have changed over time

Today’s mortgage interest rates are well below the highest annual average rate recorded by Freddie Mac — 16.63% in 1981. A year before the COVID-19 pandemic upended economies across the world, the average interest rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage for 2019 was 3.94%. The average rate for 2021 was 2.96%, the lowest annual average in 30 years.

The historic drop in interest rates means homeowners who have mortgages from 2019 and older could potentially realize significant interest savings by refinancing with one of today’s lower interest rates. When considering a mortgage or refinance, it’s important to take into account closing costs such as appraisal, application, origination and attorney’s fees. These factors, in addition to the interest rate and loan amount, all contribute to the cost of a mortgage.

How Credible mortgage rates are calculated

Changing economic conditions, central bank policy decisions, investor sentiment and other factors influence the movement of mortgage rates. Credible average mortgage rates and mortgage refinance rates reported in this article are calculated based on information provided by partner lenders who pay compensation to Credible.

The rates assume a borrower has a 740 credit score and is borrowing a conventional loan for a single-family home that will be their primary residence. The rates also assume no (or very low) discount points and a down payment of 20%.

Credible mortgage rates reported here will only give you an idea of current average rates. The rate you actually receive can vary based on a number of factors.

Factors that influence mortgage rates (and are in your control)

Many factors affect what mortgage interest rate you can qualify for, and some of them are within your control. Improving these factors could help you qualify for a lower interest rate. 

  • Credit score — Generally, the lowest interest rates go to borrowers with the highest credit scores.
  • Debt-to-income ratio — DTI is a percentage that compares your total debts with your income. To calculate DTI, divide your monthly gross income by the total of all your monthly minimum debt payments. Generally, lenders prefer a DTI of 35% or less.
  • Down payment amount — Generally, lenders (and many sellers) look favorably on a higher down payment amount. If you put down less than 20% of the home’s purchase price, many lenders will require you to pay for private mortgage insurance, which protects the lender (not you) if you fail to repay the mortgage.
  • Home location/price — Interest rates can vary depending on what state you live in and where in the state you’re buying. Likewise, if you need to borrow a lot more than average (a jumbo loan) or very little, you may get a higher interest rate.
  • Repayment term — The lowest rates typically come with 10- or 15-year terms, while 30-year terms usually have the highest interest rates.
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