Mortgage rates continue to hold steady around 5%. Rates have been inching down for the past few weeks after hitting a peak of 5.3% in the second week of May.
Even though rates are softening slightly, they’re still having an impact on affordability. If you’re looking to buy a home soon, shopping around with multiple lenders and considering all of the mortgage options available to you can help you save money in a high rate environment.
“In this environment, small changes in rates or terms can have a large impact, which is leading many to consider a wider range of options or loan types in hopes of getting a better deal,” says Robert Heck, vice president of mortgage at Morty. “We always encourage buyers to look closely at all of their options, so in many ways this environment supports healthy practices on the part of buyers, including taking a deep look both at your individual financial situation and then shopping around for a mortgage or using a mortgage marketplace to access all available options.”
Mortgage rates today
Mortgage refinance rates today
Use our free mortgage calculator to see how today’s mortgage rates will affect your monthly and long-term payments.
Your estimated monthly payment
- Paying a 25% higher down payment would save you $8,916.08 on interest charges
- Lowering the interest rate by 1% would save you $51,562.03
- Paying an additional $500 each month would reduce the loan length by 146 months
By plugging in different term lengths and interest rates, you’ll see how your monthly payment could change.
Are mortgage rates going up?
Mortgage rates started ticking up from historic lows in the second half of 2021, and may continue to increase throughout 2022. This is in large part due to high levels of inflation and policy response to rising prices.
In the last 12 months, the Consumer Price Index rose by 8.3%. The
has been working to get inflation under control, and plans to increase the federal funds target rate five more times this year, following a 0.25% increase at its March meeting and a 0.5% increase in May.
Though not directly tied to the federal funds rate, mortgage rates are often pushed up as a result of Fed rate hikes. As the central bank continues to tighten monetary policy to lower inflation, it’s likely that mortgage rates will remain elevated.
What do high rates mean for the housing market?
When mortgage rates go up, home shoppers’ buying power decreases, as more of their anticipated housing budget has to go toward paying interest. If rates get high enough, buyers can get priced out of the market completely, which cools demand and puts downward pressure on home price growth.
However, that doesn’t mean home prices will fall — in fact, they’re expected to rise even more this year, just at a slower pace than what we’ve seen in the past couple of years.
Even with fewer buyers in the market, those who can afford to buy will still be competing over historically low inventory. When there are more buyers than there are houses available, home prices go up. So while conditions may loosen up a bit due to high rates, we aren’t likely to see a significant drop in prices.
“As the market tries to settle in at higher rate levels, buyer demand has gradually softened as consumers assess what their affordability looks like,” Heck says. “That said, things differ greatly market-to-market and the inventory situation remains dire in many locations, which can still drive demand.”
What is a good mortgage rate?
It can be hard to know if a lender is offering you a good rate, which is why it’s so important to get preapproved with multiple
and compare each offer. Apply for preapproval with at least two or three lenders.
Your rate isn’t the only thing that matters. Be sure to compare both what your monthly costs would be as well as your upfront costs, including any lender fees.
Even though mortgage rates are heavily influenced by economic factors that are out of your control, there are some things you can do to help ensure you get a good rate:
- Consider fixed vs. adjustable rates. You may be able to get a lower introductory rate with an adjustable-rate mortgage, which can be good if you plan to move before the intro period ends. But a fixed rate could be better if you’re buying a forever home because you won’t risk your rate going up later. Look at the rates your lender offers and weigh your options.
- Look at your finances. The stronger your financial situation, the lower your mortgage rate should be. Look for ways to boost your credit score or lower your debt-to-income ratio, if necessary. Saving for a higher down payment also helps.
- Choose the right lender. Each lender charges different mortgage rates. Picking the right one for your financial situation will help you land a good rate.