Florida Mortgage and Refinance Rates
As of Saturday, July 31, 2021, current rates in Florida are 2.97% for a 30-year fixed, 2.27% for a 15-year fixed, and 3.00% for a 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM).
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Florida mortgage overview
Make sure you shop around for mortgages to find the best offer. In Florida, you have several options:
- Florida conventional mortgages: Considered the standard type of home loan, conventional mortgages have qualification requirements. Generally, a FICO score of 620 and a debt-to-income ratio of 45 percent or less can help you get one. To get the best rate on a conventional mortgage, you’ll need a credit score of 740 or higher. These types of loans typically require larger down payments than government-backed mortgages. In order to avoid private mortgage insurance (PMI), which protects the lender in the event you default, you’ll usually need to make a down payment of 20 percent.
- Florida FHA loans: If your credit history disqualifies you for a conventional mortgage, you may want to look into FHA loans. Because these are backed by the government through the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), lenders who issue these loans are more comfortable extending these offers to borrowers with less than favorable credit and income. FHA loans usually require smaller down payments than conventional loans. With a credit score of 589 or higher, you typically need a 3.5 percent down payment. If your score is 500, you’d need to put 10 percent down — but that’s still lower than what’s usually required of conventional loans.
- Florida VA loans: Backed by the Department of Veterans Affairs, VA loans help veterans and other qualifying members of the armed services own homes. You can get one through a VA-approved lender in Florida. These loans don’t require any down payment. They don’t require PMI either. However, you usually need to pay a VA funding fee. Still, this fee usually ranges from 2.3 percent to 3.6 percent of the purchase price.
First-time homebuyer programs in Florida
Home prices have been rising faster than wages in Florida, and that creates challenges for first-time buyers. In fact, Florida is home to the two housing markets where prices outpaced home prices by the widest margin over the past decade, according to Bankrate research. The Sunshine State offers programs designed to help first-time homebuyers. As long as you haven't owned a home within the past three years, you may qualify for most of them. Learn more about Florida's first-time homebuyer programs.
The Florida Finance Housing Corp. offers loans to help people pay for down payments and closing costs. You can receive this assistance only if you get a mortgage through Florida Housing.
The organization also oversees the Salute Our Soldiers Military Loan Program, which provides 30-year fixed-rate mortgages to veterans and active duty military personnel. The program also offers up to $10,000 in down payment assistance and closing cost assistance. In addition, the organization offers mortgage credit certificates (MCC), which provide tax credits worth up to 50 percent of the loan amount.
Florida mortgage refinancing
With interest rates at historic lows, you may be able to lower your monthly payment and save thousands by refinancing your loan to a lower rate. You can use Bankrate’s mortgage refinance calculator to see how much you can save.