Washington DC Mortgage and Refinance Rates
As of Wednesday, September 22, 2021, current rates in Washington, DC are 3.04% for a 30-year fixed, and 2.29% for a 15-year fixed.
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Washington, D.C. mortgage overview
By Dhara Singh
The United States capital is home to more than 700,000 residents, with a median home sale price of $500,000 in the Washington, D.C. metro area as of May 2020, according to Bright MLS. D.C. has a low home vacancy rate, which means competition is high for homebuyers.
To help individuals and families purchase homes, the D.C. Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD) maintains DCHousingSearch.org, a free online housing locator service. Through its network of partner community-based organizations, DHCD offers training and counseling on foreclosure prevention, budgeting, credit and more to potential and current homeowners. The DC Housing Finance Agency (DCHFA) also offers resources to advance affordable housing.
First-time homebuyer programs in Washington, D.C.
In Washington, D.C., qualifying homebuyers may have access to a variety of programs to help them through the buying process.
Home Purchase Assistance Program (HPAP)
The Home Purchase Assistance Program provides down payment and closing cost assistance in the form of interest-free loans to qualified applicants for the purchase of their primary residence. These may include single-family houses, condominiums or cooperative units. As of 2019, eligible first-time homebuyer applicants could receive as much as $80,000 in gap financing, plus $4,000 in closing cost assistance.
Employer-Assisted Housing Program (EAHP)
Designed to help with the down payment and closing costs on their first single-family home, the Employer-Assisted Housing Program offers eligible District government employees a deferred zero-percent interest loan and a matching funds grant. For this program, “first-time homebuyer” means that the individual has had no ownership in a principal residence within the District in the previous three years.
The loan has zero interest, and no payments are required until the property is refinanced with cash out, sold or transferred. There is no cash required upfront, and no income limit. The maximum purchase price, however, is $726,525.
Washington, D.C. mortgage refinancing
If you’re looking to refinance a home in Washington, D.C., look to private lenders, banks and mortgage brokers, since the DCHFA and DHCD do not offer any programs specifically for refinancing.
It’s important to note that you don’t have to refinance with the same lender who holds your current mortgage, regardless of the lending institution. When you’re ready to refinance, it’s smart to identify your goals (such as a shorter term, eliminating PMI or a lower monthly mortgage payment), do your research and shop around and make sure you’re getting the best possible rate and terms.
Note that some of the first-time homebuyer assistance programs are void upon refinancing.