On Tuesday, March 09, 2021, according to Bankrate’s latest survey of the nation’s largest refinance lenders, the benchmark 15-year fixed refinance rate is 2.560% with an APR of 2.750%. Meanwhile, the average 15-year fixed jumbo refinance rate is 2.570% with an APR of 2.620%.
Refinance rates continually fluctuate, but for now they are still within a historically low range. Since mortgage experts don’t expect interest rates to drop significantly from current levels, it could be a good time for homeowners to refinance.
|30-Year Fixed Rate||3.310%||3.440%|
|30-Year Fixed-Rate VA||2.920%||3.160%|
|20-Year Fixed Rate||3.170%||3.350%|
|15-Year Fixed Rate||2.560%||2.750%|
|30-Year Fixed-Rate FHA||2.870%||3.700%|
|30-Year Fixed-Rate Jumbo||3.340%||3.390%|
|15-Year Fixed-Rate Jumbo||2.570%||2.620%|
|7/1 ARM Jumbo||3.140%||3.860%|
|5/1 ARM Jumbo||2.990%||3.950%|
Rates as of Tuesday, March 09, 2021 at 6:30 AM
The table above brings together a comprehensive national survey of mortgage lenders to help you know what are the most competitive 15-year refinance interest rates. This interest rate table is updated daily to give you the most current rates when choosing a 15-year refinance home loan.
Refinancing to a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage can save you money over the long term in two ways. Lenders charge lower interest rates on shorter-term mortgages, reflecting their lower level of risk in extending the loan compared with a typical 30-year loan. Also, since you’re borrowing the money for half as long, you’ll often save tens of thousands of dollars in interest over the life of the mortgage.
However, with a 15-year loan, you’ll have a higher monthly payment. If you can afford the larger payments, refinancing to a 15-year loan can help you reach homeownership sooner while saving you a bundle on interest.
If you currently have a 30-year mortgage and have room in your budget for a higher monthly mortgage payment, refinancing to a 15-year fixed-rate loan can make good financial sense. You’ll still have the stability of knowing that the monthly payment won’t change, while getting the benefit of a lower interest rate. Plus, you’ll pay off your home faster, freeing up money for other financial goals like saving for retirement when you do. Keep in mind that you need to show the lender that you have enough income to cover a higher payment in order to qualify for the new loan.
On the other hand, if your main goal is to achieve the lowest possible payment, you're better off refinancing to a 20- or 30-year mortgage. While starting fresh with a new long-term loan isn’t the right tactic for everyone, it is an option, especially if you need to trim monthly expenses.
Advantages of a 15-year mortgage refinance:
Disadvantages of a 15-year mortgage refinance:
Not sure whether to commit to the higher monthly payments? You can mimic the effect of refinancing to a 15-year loan by simply making extra payments on your existing 30-year loan. You’ll pay less interest and shorten the pay off time while still keeping some wiggle room. Should a financial emergency arise, you can revert to your original, lower payment amount for that month, or as long as you need to, without incurring any penalties.
Deciding between a 15-year refi and increasing payments on your existing loan? You can use our Additional Mortgage Payment Calculator to see how extra payments will shorten your pay-off time and lower your interest costs.
When you’ve gotten a raise or two. Say you took a 30-year mortgage five years ago, but your income has risen considerably since then. In that case, it could make sense to refinance into a 15-year loan. Your payments will be higher compared to a 30-year loan, but your higher income will allow you to absorb the new cost and pay down your loan in half the time.
When the monthly payments on a 15-year mortgage won’t be much higher than you’re already paying. This can be especially compelling if your credit score has improved significantly. Say you haven’t refinanced that 30-year loan you took during the rate spike of 2018. Here’s a scenario: If you borrowed $300,000 at 6 percent interest, your monthly payment is $1,799. Rolling the $300,000 balance into a 15-year loan at 2.5 percent would mean a monthly payment of $2,000.
When you're halfway into a 30-year mortgage. Granted, not many people keep loans this long. But in this case, the time could be right for refinancing to a 15-year loan. For one thing, your rate is much higher than you’d pay today. For another, you’ll have a lower principal balance after all those years of repayment.
Shopping around is the single most important step you can take before you commit to a mortgage. Rates and closing costs can vary from lender to lender. For ideas, see our reviews of best overall mortgage lenders and best online mortgage lenders. Keep in mind that your credit score is the biggest factor in determining your rate. The best deals go to borrowers with credit scores of 740 or higher. Other considerations include your income and how much you’re putting down or, in the case of a refinance, how much equity you have in the house.