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30-Yr fixed 4.750 % 0.7 to 1
15-Yr fixed 3.750 % 0.7 to 1
5/1 ARM 3.125 % 0.7 to 1
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Mortgage Rates: Continued Low in Late March

While continuing to reflect a weak housing market, low mortgage rates did manage to creep up a bit as March moved to its end. The benchmark 30-year fixed mortgage interest rate increased to 4.750%. The 15-year fixed mortgage interest rate increased to 3.875% while that of the 5/1 ARM loan was at 3.125%.

Borrowers with good credit continue to be able to benefit from historically low interest rates with 0.7% to 1% origination point. Conforming fixed rate mortgages are popular among borrowers as they offer set mortgage payments each month for the life of the mortgage.

Continuing this trend FHA 30-year fixed mortgage rates increased to 4.500%, while FHA 15-year fixed rate mortgages were at 4.250%. Rates for FHA 5/1 ARM loans remained at 3.750%. FHA mortgages require lower down payments, making them particularly sought after by buyers. Higher closing costs due to FHA fees as well as an upfront mortgage insurance premium do mitigate this built-in advantage.

Jumbo mortgage 30-year interest rates were also up a bit to 5.375%, while 15-year jumbo mortgage interest rates remained at 5.000% and Jumbo 5/1 ARM loan rates were at 3.875%. The rates represent the best jumbo mortgage rates extended on 0.7% to 1% origination fee to borrowers with good credit. Jumbo mortgage loans are those above the conforming loan limit, which is $417,000 to $729,250 depending on locale.

Current Wells Fargo California rates for 30-year fixed mortgages remain at 5.000% (5.191% APR). Mortgage Backed Securities (MBS) prices were up +3/32 (FNMA 30-year 4.5 at 101.18). Prices on the MBS market influence mortgage rates which trend in the opposite direction.

With the Libyan situation continuing and NATO’s involvement in it extending into a second week, concerns about short-term petroleum supplies and uncertainty over the eventual outcome have been having an inflationary effect on oil prices.