Current 30-Year Refinance Rates for December 2021

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Calling all homeowners who haven’t refinanced: Mortgage refinance rates are still historically low.

But the refinance window of opportunity is slowly closing. 

Refinance interest rates have been up and down throughout this year but have followed a general upward trend. With the continued growth of the economy and the recent Federal Reserve decision to begin rolling back its policies that have helped keep rates low, look for rising rates to be a trend. So if refinancing makes sense for your personal circumstances, you’ll be better off making that move sooner rather than later.

What the Experts Are Saying About 30-Year Refinance Rates

Interest rates started the year at record lows. In the intervening months, refinance rates have slowly climbed. This rate movement aligns with how experts forecasted 2021. This trajectory looks like it will continue in the months to come, as many experts anticipate higher rates to be a sustained longer-term trend. “We do expect rates to rise,” says David Yi, the president of Providence Mortgage, a mortgage broker based in Bethesda, Maryland. 

However, rates aren’t predicted to skyrocket overnight. “I don’t think [rates are] going to jump a half a percent by the end of the year,” Yi says. We will likely continue to see normal rate fluctuations from day to day and week to week. That means 30-year refinance rates should stay in the 3% range in the coming months.

What the 2021 30-Year Refinance Rate Forecast Means for You

Although interest rates have risen 0.25% to 0.50% from their record lows earlier this year, homeowners can still access a lower rate than what they already have. These rates can make refinancing an attractive option, especially for those who haven’t refinanced in the past few years. Only three years ago, rates were nearly 2% higher than today, according to Freddie Mac

One common objection to skipping a refinance is the threat of rising rates and the belief there won’t be valid savings. A good rule of thumb: For a rate and term refinance to make sense, you need to reduce your rate by at least 1%. Compare your interest rate with a current refinance rate quote and see what the difference is. Then use a refinance calculator to see the potential savings. 

With any loan, there are closing costs to consider. Make sure to factor this cost into the overall financial picture to make sure a refinance makes sense. 

What Are Today’s 30-Year Refi Rates?

On Tuesday, November 30, 2021 according to Bankrate’s latest survey of the nation’s largest mortgage lenders, the average 30-year refinance rate is 3.130% with an APR of 3.250%. For a 30-year FHA refinance the average rate is 2.700% with an APR of 3.580%, while a 30-year VA loan refinance has an average rate of 2.790% with an APR of 2.990%.

Current 30-Year Refinance Rates

ProductInterest RateAPR
30-Year Fixed Rate3.130%3.250%
30-Year FHA Rate2.700%3.580%
30-Year VA Rate2.790%2.990%
30-Year Fixed Jumbo Rate3.120%3.190%
20-Year Fixed Rate3.010%3.130%
15-Year Fixed Rate2.440%2.600%
15-Year Fixed Jumbo Rate2.430%2.490%
10-Year Fixed Rate2.420%2.580%
5/1 ARM Rate2.690%3.980%
5/1 ARM Jumbo Rate2.680%3.690%
7/1 ARM Rate2.880%4.000%
7/1 ARM Jumbo Rate2.890%3.920%
10/1 ARM Rate3.090%4.080%
ProductInterest RateAPR
30-Year Fixed Rate3.140%3.300%
30-Year FHA Rate2.660%3.530%
30-Year VA Rate2.750%2.920%
30-Year Fixed Jumbo Rate3.130%3.220%
20-Year Fixed Rate3.020%3.170%
15-Year Fixed Rate2.440%2.670%
15-Year Fixed Jumbo Rate2.430%2.500%
10-Year Fixed Rate2.420%2.610%
5/1 ARM Rate2.760%4.070%
5/1 ARM Jumbo Rate2.810%4.050%
7/1 ARM Rate2.870%3.980%
7/1 ARM Jumbo Rate3.000%4.010%
10/1 ARM Rate3.090%4.040%

Rates as of Tuesday, November 30, 2021

ABOUT THESE RATES

These rate averages are based on weekday mortgage rate information provided by national lenders to Bankrate.com, which like NextAdvisor is owned by Red Ventures. These averages provide borrowers a broad view of average rates that can inform borrowers when comparing lender offers. These average rates are updated daily, though it is possible rates have changed since this was last updated.

How to Use Our Mortgage Refinance Rate Table

On our refinance rate table you can find average interest rates for a variety of the most popular types of home loans. We feature both the interest rate and the annual percentage rate (APR), which includes additional lender fees, so you can get a better idea of the overall cost of the loan. You’ll find information for specific types of loans, such as VA loans, FHA loans, jumbo loans, and adjustable rate mortgages (ARM). It also includes loans with different repayment terms, 15-year, 20-year, and 30-year refinance loans.

The actual interest rate you can qualify for is likely to be different from the average rates quoted in our rate table. But these rates are useful for giving you a benchmark to use when comparing loan offers. These rates can give you a sense of how the type of mortgage and the length of the repayment term impacts your interest rate and APR. A shorter loan repayment term typically comes with a lower interest rate compared to a similar loan with a longer repayment period. Government-backed loans, such as VA and FHA loans, are easier to qualify for with a lower credit score, but can have higher fees than conventional loans.

The Potential Impact of a 30-Year Refinance

The best time to look at a 30-year refinance is when refinance rates are much lower than your current mortgage interest rate.

For example, if you’d purchased a home 10 years ago with a $300,000 loan at 4% interest, you’d have $235,734 left to pay. If you refinance that amount with a new 30-year loan, reducing your mortgage rate by 1% would lower your monthly payment by nearly $440 a month. But in this scenario, you’d pay over $15,000 more in interest over the life of the loan because you are repaying the existing balance over an additional 10 years.

Loan TermInitial Loan BalanceCurrent Loan BalanceInterest RateMonthly PaymentRemaining Interest
30 Years300,000$235,7344%$1,432$106,674
30 YearsN/A$235,7343%$993$122,249

Lowering your monthly payment by $440 amounts to an additional $105,600 in liquid cash in your pocket over 20 years. If you’re disciplined, that money can go a long way toward saving and paying off other high-interest debt. 

But keep in mind you’ll pay more in interest over the long run that way. That’s because the trade-off for refinancing into a new 30-year loan is that in years 21 to 30, you’re still paying $993 in mortgage and interest payments a month. If you hadn’t refinanced, you wouldn’t have a mortgage during those years, and those last 10 years of mortgage payments add up to $119,160.

Pros and Cons of a 30-Year Refinance Mortgage

Depending on your individual circumstances, there are upsides and downsides to keep in mind with a 30-year mortgage refinance loan:

Pros

  • Lower monthly payments

  • More money to save, invest, or put into an emergency fund each month

  • Easier to qualify for than a short-term loan that has higher monthly payments

Cons

  • Longer repayment term

  • Builds equity more slowly

  • More expensive over the long term

  • Higher mortgage rates compared to shorter-term loans

30-Year Refinance Rate: Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What is a 30-year fixed-rate refinance mortgage?

A 30-year, fixed-rate refinance mortgage is a home loan with a 30-year repayment term that replaces your existing mortgage. This type of mortgage refinance has a fixed interest rate, so the rate you pay will never change over the life of the loan.

When is the right time to refinance?

The right time to refinance depends on your financial situation and your existing mortgage.

The best time to refinance is when it will help you achieve your financial goals, such as reducing your monthly payment. This is usually accomplished in two ways: by extending your loan term or by securing a lower interest rate. But it could also make sense to refinance from an adjustable-rate mortgage to a fixed-rate mortgage if your interest rate is about to increase.

A longer loan term will typically lower your monthly mortgage and interest payments. However, extending your loan term could put you in a situation where you’ll end up paying more interest over the life of the loan. But if you can secure a lower interest rate at the same time that you extend the loan, you may be able to get the best of both worlds. So it’s important to run the numbers to ensure the extra interest you pay over the life of the loan won’t outweigh the short-term monthly savings.

The ideal scenario for refinancing your mortgage is to get both short-term and long-term savings by significantly reducing your interest rate without extending your loan term. Although, that’s not easily achievable if rates aren’t notably lower than your current mortgage rate. So if you can only lower your monthly payments, but use that extra money to pay off other high-interest debt, that can also make financial sense.

When refinancing you also need to pay attention to the closing costs. You’ll usually pay 3% to 6% of the loan amount in the form of various fees, such as prepaid interest, appraisal fees, and lender origination charges. Given this upfront cost, refinancing may not save you more than it costs if you don’t keep the loan through its breakeven point.

How do I choose between a 30-year fixed refinance or a 15-year?

Some experts, like NextAdvisor contributor Suze Orman, caution against extending your loan term. Orman advice is to think it through thoroughly since it could cost you more in the long run. Orman believes you should never refinance into a mortgage that will extend the amount of time you have until your loan is paid off. One advantage of a shorter-term refinance, like a 15-year refinance loan, is that it will typically have a lower rate than a 30-year loan. 

But when rates are low enough you may be able to reduce your monthly payment and the amount of interest you owe without extending your mortgage’s repayment term. 

Another option is to refinance into a new 30-year loan, but make payments as if it was a 15 -year mortgage. That way you can still pay off the loan in the same amount of time, but you’ll have the flexibility to make smaller payments if you fall on hard times.

 

How do I find the best 30-year refinance mortgage rates?

A lot of factors go into determining the refinance rates you’re eligible for. So to get the best deal, you’ll have to compare mortgage lenders.

In order for a lender to give you an accurate estimate for rates and fees, you’ll need to provide some financial information with supporting documentation. Once you apply, the lender will send you a Loan Estimate. Since all Loan Estimate forms are the same, it makes it easy to find the best deal. 

Be sure to look at both the rates and the fees. All refinance loans have closing costs, but how much you’ll pay varies by lender. So the lowest rate may not be the best deal if it comes loaded with extra fees.

How do I get a personalized 30-year fixed refinance rate?

You can contact a lender to get a ballpark estimate of what rate you may qualify for. But in order to know exactly what interest rate you’ll get, you need to fill out an application and have your credit pulled.

It can be a good idea to compare offers from two or three different lenders. Not only will your refinance rate vary from one lender to the next, but so will the fees. Refinance closing costs can be thousands of dollars, so paying as little as possible upfront is as important as finding the best rate.

Why should I refinance with a new 30-year fixed mortgage?

A better refinance rate can significantly lower your interest rate and monthly mortgage payment. A study by the fintech startup Haus found a 0.75% rate difference between the highest and lowest rates, all else being equal.

What may seem like a small change in your interest rate, can have a noticeable effect on your budget. For example, on a $300,000 30-year refinance, each 0.1% change in your rate would increase or decrease your payment by roughly $16 and the interest you’d pay by around $5,800.