Adjustable-rate mortgages may not have the same popularity they did a decade or two ago. Fixed-rate loans are much more competitive now thanks to historically low interest rates across the board, but they can still be the right fit for some borrowers. If you’re considering an ARM, here are the key things to know.
What is a 10/1 ARM loan?
The name tells you basically everything you need to know, and here’s how to read it: The number before the slash is the period that your interest rate is fixed, and the number after the slash is how often the interest rate changes after that. So, 10/1 means your rate is fixed for the first 10 years, and then adjusts once every year after that.
How does a 10/1 ARM work?
Adjustable-rate mortgages usually start with lower interest rates than their fixed-rate counterparts, so they can enable homeowners to qualify for a bigger loan because the payments will be less, at least in the beginning. Because 10/1 ARM will begin to see annual adjustments to the interest rate after 10 years, you’ll want to make sure you understand the changes that are coming after the first decade. When the adjustments start, may see a jump in how much interest accrues, how much you owe and how much you have to pay every month.
When should you consider a 10/1 ARM?
Adjustable-rate mortgages are usually best for people who are only planning to hold them for the initial term. So, if you’re looking to move within 10 years, or know you’ll be able to refinance to lock in your interest rate in that time, a 10/1 ARM could be the right mortgage for you.