Refinance rates remain low today: Is it the right time for a refi?


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Several major mortgage refinance rates dropped today. The 10-, 15- and 30-year fixed refinances all saw their average rates decrease. While refinance interest rates are never set in stone, rates have been historically low lately. This means right now might be a good time to lock in a low, fixed refinance rate. But as always, make sure to first consider your personal goals and circumstances before getting a refinance, and talk to multiple lenders to find a lender who can best meet your needs.

30-year fixed-rate refinance

The average 30-year fixed refinance rate right now is 3.21%, a decrease of 3 basis points compared to one week ago. (A basis point is equivalent to 0.01%.) Refinancing to a 30-year fixed loan from a shorter loan term can lower your monthly payments. If you’re having difficulties making your monthly payments currently, a 30-year refinance could be a good option for you. However, interest rates for a 30-year refinance will typically be higher than rates for a 15-year or 10-year refinance. It’ll also take you longer to pay off your loan.

15-year fixed-rate refinance

The average 15-year fixed refinance rate right now is 2.49%, a decrease of 2 basis points over last week. Refinancing to a 15-year fixed loan from a 30-year fixed loan will likely raise your monthly payment. But you’ll save more money over time, because you’re paying off your loan quicker. Interest rates for a 15-year refinance also tend to be lower than that of a 30-year refinance, so you’ll save even more in the long run.

10-year fixed-rate refinance

The average rate for a 10-year fixed refinance loan is currently 2.49%, a decrease of 1 basis point from what we saw the previous week. You’ll pay more every month with a ten-year fixed refinance compared to a 30-year or 15-year refinance — but you’ll also have a lower interest rate. A 10-year refinance can help you pay off your house much quicker and save on interest. Just be sure to carefully consider your budget and current financial situation to make sure that you can afford a higher monthly payment.

Where rates are headed

We track refinance rate trends using information collected by Bankrate, which is owned by CNET’s parent company. Here’s a table with the average refinance rates provided by lenders nationwide:

Average refinance interest rates

ProductRateLast weekChange
30-year fixed refi3.21%3.24%-0.03
15-year fixed refi2.49%2.51%-0.02
10-year fixed refi2.49%2.50%-0.01

Rates as of Dec. 20, 2021.

How to find personalized refinance rates

When looking for refinance rates, know that your specific rate may differ from those advertised online. Market conditions aren’t the only factor in interest rates; your particular application and credit history will also play a large role.

Generally, you’ll want a high credit score, low credit utilization ratio, and a history of making consistent and on-time payments in order to get the best interest rates. Researching interest rates online is always a good idea, but you’ll need to connect with a mortgage professional to get your exact refinance rate. Also remember to account for potential fees and closing costs.

It’s also worth noting that in recent months, lenders have been stricter with their requirements. If you have a low credit score or a poor credit history, you might have trouble getting a refinance at the lowest interest rates.

Before applying for a refinance, you should make your application as strong as possible in order to get the best rates available. If you haven’t already, try to improve your credit by monitoring your credit reports, using credit responsibly, and managing your finances carefully. You should also shop around with multiple lenders and compare offers to make sure you’re getting the best rate.

When to consider a mortgage refinance

Most people refinance because the market interest rates are lower than their current rates or because they want to change their loan term. It’s true that in the past year, interest rates have been at a historic low. But when deciding whether to refinance, be sure to take into account other factors besides market interest rates.

To decide whether a refinance is right for you, consider all of the factors including how long you plan to stay in your current home, the length of your loan term and the amount of your monthly payment. And don’t forget about fees and closing costs, which can add up.

Some lenders have tightened their requirements in recent months, so you may not be able to get a refinance at the posted interest rates — or even a refinance at all — if you don’t meet their standards. Refinancing can be a great move if you get a good rate or can pay off your loan sooner — but consider carefully whether it’s the right choice for you.



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