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LendingTree is compensated by companies on this site and this compensation may impact how and where offers appear on this site (such as the order). LendingTree does not include all lenders, savings products, or loan options available in the marketplace.
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Written by Rene Bermudez | Edited by Crissinda Ponder | Updated September 22, 2023

Current 30 year-fixed mortgage rates are averaging 7.57%

The average rate for a 15-year fixed mortgage is 6.73%

Current average rates are calculated using all conditional loan offers presented to consumers nationwide by LendingTree’s network partners on the previous day for each combination of loan program, loan term and loan amount. Rates and other loan terms are subject to lender approval and not guaranteed. Not all consumers may qualify. See LendingTree’s Terms of Use for more details.

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Mortgage rates forecast

The current mortgage rates forecast indicates that rates are likely to trend slightly upward and remain high compared to recent years. Here are the U.S. weekly average rates from Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey, as of September 21, 2023:

  • 30-year fixed-rate mortgage: 7.19%
  • 15-year fixed-rate mortgage: 6.54%


Will mortgage rates go down?

Mortgage rates remained largely in the 6% range this year until late August, when they crossed the 7% threshold for the first time since November of last year. The current mortgage rates forecast indicates that rates are likely to remain high for the rest of the year. 

As we continue to face inflation, rate hikes from the Federal Reserve remain a looming possibility. However, it’s important to note that even if the Fed increases the federal funds rate, it’s not a given that mortgage rates will follow. In addition, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell predicted in late June that housing inflation could come down over the next 12 to 24 months.

As a result, it seems reasonable to expect that homeowners stuck with 7% rates or higher will have a decent chance of refinancing to a lower rate this year.

How are mortgage rates determined?

There are nine primary factors that determine your mortgage rate:

  1. Your credit score. The higher your score, the lower your interest rate.
  2. Your down payment amount. Lenders may offer lower rates with a higher down payment.
  3. Your loan amount. You may get a better mortgage rate for a higher loan amount.
  4. Your loan program. Interest rates on Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) loans tend to be lower than conventional loan rates.
  5. Your loan term. Shorter terms usually equal lower interest rates.
  6. Your location. Interest rates vary based on where you live.
  7. Your occupancy. You’ll get the best interest rates financing a home you plan to live in as your primary residence.
  8. Your property type. Lenders offer the most favorable mortgage rates for single-family homes. You’ll pay a higher interest rate for a mortgage on a condo, manufactured home or multifamily home.
  9. Economic factors. Inflation, the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy and U.S. Treasury bond yields can influence whether mortgage rates go up or down.

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How to get the lowest mortgage rates

There are seven steps you can take to get your lowest interest rate:

1. Boost your credit score to 780 or higher

In recent years, you needed at least a 740 credit score to qualify for the lowest conventional loan interest rates, but these days you’ll need to aim even higher — to at least 780. Here’s how to improve your credit score.

2. Make a bigger down payment or borrow less equity

You’ll snag the best possible interest rate on a conventional loan if you have a 780 credit score and make at least a 25% down payment. Your loan-to-value (LTV) ratio, which measures how much of your home’s value you need to borrow, is an important factor in your quoted interest rates. If you can push down that ratio, you’ll see more competitive rate offers.

3. Reduce your total monthly debt load.

Lenders measure your debt-to-income (DTI) ratio by dividing your total monthly debt, including your mortgage payment, by your before-tax income, and generally prefer a maximum 43% DTI ratio. A debt consolidation calculator can help you estimate how much you might be able to lower your monthly payments using a debt consolidation loan.

4. Consider an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM)

If you plan to move in a few years, keep in mind that an ARM loan features a lower initial rate for a set time period. If you can sell the home before that initial rate expires, you could save a lot of money in interest compared with what you would’ve spent on a fixed-rate loan.

5. Pick a shorter loan term

Lenders typically charge lower rates for shorter terms like 15-year loans, a common alternative to a 30-year mortgage. If you can afford the higher monthly payment, you’ll save thousands of dollars over the life of the loan, according to a LendingTree study. Running different scenarios through a mortgage calculator can help you understand exactly how much you might save if you shorten or lengthen your loan term.

6. Pay mortgage points

A mortgage point is an upfront fee equal to 1% of your total loan amount. Paying for points is one way you can buy yourself a lower interest rate. So if you’re borrowing $300,000, for example, one point would cost you $3,000.

Each mortgage point can usually lower your rate by 0.125% to 0.25%. However, to get the exact cost of your mortgage point, you’ll need to check Page 2, Section A of the loan estimate you received from your lender.

7. Compare mortgage lenders

The main reason to compare offers from several lenders is to save money — and we’re not just talking about a few dollars here and there. A LendingTree study found that homebuyers in the nation’s largest metro areas saved an average of $63,151 over the lifetime of their loans by comparing offers from different lenders.

If you skip the crucial step of shopping around, you miss out on the opportunity to:

  • Learn about special deals lenders may be offering on specific loan programs.
  • Use the knowledge you gain to negotiate for a better mortgage rate. You can use your offers as leverage and ask each lender about matching your lowest-quoted rate.

If you’re struggling with where to start the process, check out our list of the best mortgage lenders:

Our choices for the best mortgage lenders

LenderLendingTree rating and “best of” categoryLender review

Best for refinance loans
Read our review

Best for VA loans
Read our review
ally bank logo
Best for jumbo loans
Read our review

Best online mortgage experience
Read our review

Best for FHA loans
Read our review

Best for home equity loans
Read our review

Best overall mortgage loan variety
Read our review

Read more about how we chose our list of the best mortgage lenders.

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Frequently asked questions

A mortgage rate shows you the amount of money you’ll have to pay as a fee for borrowing funds to purchase a home, and is typically expressed as a percentage of the total amount you’ve borrowed.

Be careful not to confuse interest rates and annual percentage rates (APR) — both are expressed as a percentage, but they’re very different. A typical interest rate accounts only for the fees you’re paying a lender for borrowing money. An APR, on the other hand, captures a broader view of the costs you’ll pay to take out a loan, including the interest rate plus closing costs and fees.

Still confused? Read our guide to better understand an APR versus interest rate.

Once you’ve selected your lender, you should ask your loan officer what options you have to lock in a rate. Mortgage rate locks usually last between 30 and 60 days and exist to give you a guarantee that the rate your lender offered you will still be available when you actually close on the loan. If your loan doesn’t close before your rate lock expires, you should expect to pay a rate lock extension fee.

You’ll need to apply for mortgage preapproval to find out how much you could qualify for. Lenders use the preapproval process to review your overall financial picture — including your assets, credit history, debt and income — and calculate how much they’d be willing to lend you for a mortgage.

Use the loan amount printed on your preapproval letter as a guide for your house hunting journey, but avoid borrowing the maximum. Our mortgage calculator can help you determine whether your mortgage payment leaves enough room in your budget to comfortably cover your other monthly bills.

The best type of mortgage loan will depend on your financial goals — while some loan types consistently offer lower rates, they may do so at the expense of higher monthly payments or complicated repayment terms. Weigh the pros and cons of a 15- versus 30-year loan and take time to understand ARM rates and how they differ from traditional fixed mortgage rates before signing on the dotted line.

If you’re considering an FHA loan because its interest rate is lower than a conventional loan rate, make sure you understand why you need to look at annual percentage rates (APRs), not just interest rates, when comparing FHA and conventional loans.

A teaser rate is a temporarily low interest rate offered on a loan product. It may be called an initial rate, introductory rate or discount rate, according to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. In the mortgage world, teaser rates are most commonly associated with adjustable-rate mortgages. The teaser rate period may last three, five seven or 10 years, but once it expires it typically adjusts annually.

Many home equity line of credit (HELOC) lenders offer teaser rates to their customers. Check the fine print for qualification requirements, and make sure you can afford the payment once the teaser rate period ends. You can also refinance a teaser rate loan to a fixed-rate loan in the future, if you qualify.

About the author: Rene Bermudez

Staff Writer, Mortgages

  • Expertise: Mortgages, personal finance
    • Education: Reed College


Rene Bermudez is a staff writer at LendingTree, where she covers mortgages and personal finance.

Before joining LendingTree, she worked as an independent writer, editor and researcher. Her experience includes investigative work with The Nation Institute, work in the life sciences with Language Scientific, collaborations around digital rights and cultures with Prof. Ramesh Srinivasan of UCLA’s Department of Information Studies and e-commerce coverage for Verifone.

Rene has a bachelor’s degree in Classics (Greek, Latin, and Ancient Mediterranean Studies) from Reed College.