Shutterstock.com

Shutterstock.com

Mortgage refinance rates were mixed, but one key rate cruised higher.

The nationwide average for a 30-year fixed-rate refinance climbed higher, but the average rate on a 15-year fixed ticked downwards. Meanwhile, the average rate on 10-year fixed refis held steady.

Rates for refinancing are constantly changing, but they continue to represent a bargain compared to rates before the Great Recession. If you’re in the market to refinance, it could be a great time to lock in a rate.

See refinancing rates in your area now.

30-year fixed refinance

The average 30-year fixed-refinance rate is 3.68 percent, up 7 basis points over the last week. A month ago, the average rate on a 30-year fixed refinance was lower, at 3.63 percent.

At the current average rate, you’ll pay $459.15 per month in principal and interest for every $100,000 you borrow. That’s an increase of $3.94 over what you would have paid last week.

You can use Bankrate’s mortgage calculator to get a handle on what your monthly payments would be and find out how much you’ll save by adding extra payments. It will also help you calculate how much interest you’ll pay over the life of the loan.

15-year fixed refinance

The average for a 15-year refi is currently running at 2.97 percent, down 2 basis points over the last week.

Monthly payments on a 15-year fixed refinance at that rate will cost around $685 per $100,000 borrowed. That’s obviously much higher than the monthly payment would be on a 30-year mortgage at that rate, but it comes with some big advantages: You’ll save thousands of dollars over the life of the loan in total interest paid and build equity much more rapidly.

10-year fixed refinance

The average rate for a 10-year fixed-refinance loan is 3.05 percent, unchanged from a week ago.

Monthly payments on a 10-year fixed-rate refi at 3.05 percent would cost $967.92 per month for every $100,000 you borrow. That’s a lot more than the monthly payment on even a 15-year refinance, but in return you’ll pay even less in interest than you would with a 15-year term.

Where rates are headed

To see where Bankrate’s panel of experts expect rates to go from here, check out our Rate Trend Index.

Want to see where rates are right now? Lenders nationwide respond to Bankrate’s weekday mortgage rates survey to bring you the most current rates available. Here you can see the latest marketplace average rates for a wide variety of purchase loans:

Average refinance interest rates
Product Rate Last week Change
30-year fixed refi 3.68% 3.61% +0.07
15-year fixed refi 2.97% 2.99% -0.02
10-year fixed refi 3.05% 3.05% N/C

Rates as of May 26, 2020.

Want to see where rates are right now? See refinance rates for a variety of loan options here.

How to decide whether to lock in your rate

When you lock in a refinance rate, you freeze the rate your lender offers you for a specific period of time. A rate lock will secure that rate between the time you apply for the refinance and when you close on it.

What causes mortgage rates to change

Mortgage rates are influenced by a range of economic factors, from inflation to unemployment numbers. Typically, higher inflation means higher interest rates and vice versa. As inflation rises, the dollar loses value, which in turn drives off investors for mortgage-backed securities, causing the prices to fall and yields to climb. When yields climb, rates get more expensive for borrowers.

People typically buy more homes when the economy is strong, driving demand for mortgages. Increased demand can cause an increase in rates. Less demand can lead to lower rates.

Current refinance rate environment

Refinance rates have been volatile since the COVID-19 pandemic upended the U.S. economy, but overall they have been very low. Mortgage rates are rising and falling from week to week, as lenders are inundated with forbearance and refinance requests. In general, however, rates are consistently below 4 percent and even dipping into the mid to low 3s. This is an especially good time for people with good to excellent credit to lock in a low rate for a purchase loan. However, lenders are also raising credit standards for borrowers and demanding higher down payments as they try to dampen their risks.

Methodology: The rates you see above are Bankrate.com Site Averages. These calculations are run after the close of the previous business day and include rates and/or yields we have collected that day for a specific banking product. Bankrate.com site averages tend to be volatile — they help consumers see the movement of rates day to day. The institutions included in the “Bankrate.com Site Average” tables will be different from one day to the next, depending on which institutions’ rates we gather on a particular day for presentation on the site.

To learn more about the different rate averages Bankrate publishes, see “Understanding Bankrate’s Rate Averages.”

Check rates for specific loan types
Product Purchase Rates Refinance Rates
The index above links out to loan-specific content to help you learn more about rates by product type.
30-Year Loan 30 Year Fixed Mortgage Rates Current 30 Year Refinance Rates
20-Year Loan 20-Year Mortgage Rates 20-Year Mortgage Refinance Rates
15-Year Loan 15-Year Mortgage Interest Rates 15-Year Refinance Rates
10-Year Loan Current 10 Year Mortgage Rates 10-Year Refinance Rates
FHA Loan FHA Mortgage Loan Rates FHA Refinance Interest Rates
VA Loan VA Loan Interest Rates VA Refi Interest Rates
ARM Loan Adjustable Rate Mortgage Rates ARM Refinance Interest Rates
Jumbo Loan Jumbo Loan Rates Jumbo Refi Interest Rates