Today's mortgage and refinance rates: April 8, 2021 | Rates decrease

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Most mortgage and refinance rates have gone down since last Thursday. You’ll probably get a better deal on a fixed-rate mortgage than on an adjustable-rate mortgage.

Experts told Insider fixed rates are becoming more and more beneficial for borrowers. These days, fixed rates are starting lower than adjustable rates. You also risk your rate increasing later if you choose an ARM, because rates can’t stay this low forever.

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Typically, low mortgage rates signify a struggling economy. Rates will likely stay relatively low as the US continues to struggle with the coronavirus pandemic.

Mortgage rates for Thursday, April 8, 2021

Mortgage typeAverage rate todayAverage rate last weekAverage rate last month
15-year fixed2.60%2.65%2.57%
30-year fixed3.54%3.62%3.52%
7/1 ARM4.50%4.64%4.52%
10/1 ARM4.85%4.74%4.33%

Rates from Money.com

Learn more and get offers from multiple lenders.»

Mortgage rates are down since last Thursday, except 10/1 ARM rates, which are up by 11 basis points. Since last month, all rates have increased except 7/1 ARM rates, which went down by two basis points.

We’re providing the average rates nationwide for conventional mortgages, which might be what you think of “normal mortgages.” Government-backed mortgages through the FHA, VA, or USDA may give you a lower rate — provided you’re qualified. 

Refinance rates for Thursday, April 8, 2021

Mortgage typeAverage rate todayAverage rate last weekAverage rate last month
15-year fixed2.90%2.97%2.89%
30-year fixed3.85%3.90%3.84%
7/1 ARM4.79%4.90%4.86%
10/1 ARM5.10%5.17%4.75%

Rates from Money.com

Click here to compare offers from refinancing lenders »

All mortgage refinance rates have decreased since last Thursday, but most have increased since this time last month.

Tips for locking in a low mortgage rate

Mortgage and refinance rates are low, so it could be a good day to lock in a rate. But you may not need to rush to get a low rate.

Rates will probably stay low for the foreseeable future. You have time to improve your finances, which could result in a better interest rate. Consider the following steps:

  • Increase your credit score by paying all your bills on time. You could also pay down debts or let your credit age.
  • Save for a larger down paymentYou may need between 0% and 20% for a down payment, depending on which type of mortgage you get. But if you can pay more than the minimum upfront, a lender might reward you with a lower rate.
  • Lower your debt-to-income ratio. Your DTI ratio is the amount you pay toward debts each month, divided by your gross monthly income. The lower your DTI ratio, the better. Consider paying down debts more aggressively to get a better ratio.
  • Pick a government-backed mortgage. If you’re eligible, you may want to get a USDA loan (for low-to-moderate-income borrowers buying in a rural area), a VA loan (aimed at military members and veterans), or an FHA loan (not designated for any particular group). These loans often come with lower interest rates than conventional mortgages. As a bonus, you aren’t required to make a down payment for USDA or VA loans.

You can secure a low rate today if your finances are in good shape, but you don’t need to rush to get a mortgage or refinance if you’re not ready.

15-year fixed rates

If you take out a 15-year fixed mortgage, it will take you 15 years to pay off your loan, and you’ll pay the same interest rate the entire time.

You’ll fork over more per month with a 15-year fixed mortgage than a 30-year fixed mortgage, because you’ll pay off the same mortgage principal in half the time. 

On the plus side, a 15-year term will cost less than a longer term. You’ll pay off the mortgage years in fewer years, and you’ll get a lower interest rate.  

30-year fixed rates

With a 30-year fixed mortgage, you’ll pay off your mortgage over 30 years and pay the same rate the entire time. 

A 30-year fixed-rate mortgage charges a higher interest rate than a shorter-term fixed-rate mortgage. The 30-year fixed rates used to be higher than adjustable rates, but 30-year terms have become the better deal recently.

You’ll pay less each month toward your mortgage than if you chose a shorter term. You’re spreading payments out over a longer period of time, so your monthly payments will be lower.

You’ll pay more in interest in the long term with a 30-year mortgage than you would for a 15-year mortgage, because a) the rate is higher, and b) you’ll be paying interest for longer.

Adjustable rates

With an adjustable-rate mortgage, your rate stays the same for the first few years, then changes periodically. Your rate is locked in for the first seven years on a 7/1 ARM, then your rate increases or decreases once per year.

ARM rates are at all-time lows right now, but a fixed-rate mortgage is still the better deal. The 30-year fixed rates are lower than ARM rates. It could be in your best interest to lock in a low rate with a 30-year or 15-year fixed-rate mortgage rather than risk your rate increasing later with an ARM.

If you’re considering an ARM, you should still ask your lender about what your individual rates would be if you chose a fixed-rate versus adjustable-rate mortgage.

Mortgage and refinance rates by state

Check the latest rates in your state at the links below. 

Alabama
Alaska
Arizona
Arkansas
California
Colorado
Connecticut
Delaware
Florida
Georgia
Hawaii
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky
Louisiana
Maine
Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
Nevada
New Hampshire
New Jersey
New Mexico
New York
North Carolina
North Dakota
Ohio
Oklahoma
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Carolina
South Dakota
Tennessee
Utah
Vermont
Virginia
Washington
Washington DC
West Virginia
Wisconsin
Wyoming

Laura Grace Tarpley is an editor at Personal Finance Insider, covering mortgages, refinancing, bank accounts, and bank reviews. She is also a Certified Educator in Personal Finance (CEPF). Over her four years of covering personal finance, she has written extensively about ways to save, invest, and navigate loans.

Ryan Wangman is a reviews fellow at Personal Finance Insider reporting on mortgages, refinancing, bank accounts, and bank reviews. In his past experience writing about personal finance, he has written about credit scores, financial literacy, and homeownership.

See the mortgage rates for Thursday, April 8 2021 »

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