Skip to Main Content

Most rates fall - Mortgage rates for today, May 15, 2024

featured image
Bankrate logo

The Bankrate promise

At Bankrate we strive to help you make smarter financial decisions. While we adhere to strict , this post may contain references to products from our partners. Here's an explanation for .

Mortgage interest rates were mostly lower compared to a week ago, according to rate data compiled by Bankrate. Rates for 30-year fixed, 15-year fixed and jumbo loans receded, while rates for adjustable rate mortgages increased.

At the beginning of the year, many experts predicted multiple rate cuts in 2024, but that's now changed. The movement of fixed mortgage rates parallels the 10-year Treasury yield, which moves as investor appetite fluctuates with the state of the economy, inflation and Federal Reserve decisions. At the close of the latest Fed meeting on May 1, policymakers held firm and opted not to cut rates.

“It is apparent the Fed has all but given up on multiple rate cuts in the near future,” says Ken Johnson of Florida State University. “This is not good for long-term mortgage rates. A hawkish Fed drives up the yield on 10-year Treasurys, which drives up mortgage rates.”

Whether mortgage rates move up or down, though, it’s difficult to time the market. Often, the decision to buy a home comes down to what you need. Depending on your situation, it might make sense to take a higher rate now and refinance later. This way you can start building equity, rather than chancing that buying a home will become more affordable.

Loan type Today's rate Last week's rate Change
30-year fixed 7.17% 7.25% -0.08
15-year fixed 6.67% 6.69% -0.02
5/1 ARM 6.85% 6.81% +0.04
30-year fixed jumbo 7.22% 7.29% -0.07

Rates as of May 15, 2024.

These rates are averages based on the assumptions indicated here. Actual rates available within the site may vary. This story has been reviewed by Suzanne De Vita. All rate data accurate as of Wednesday, May 15th, 2024 at 7:30 a.m. ET.

30-year mortgage rate moves lower, -0.08%

The average rate for a 30-year fixed mortgage for today is 7.17 percent, down 8 basis points since the same time last week. Last month on the 15th, the average rate on a 30-year fixed mortgage was higher, at 7.22 percent.

At the current average rate, you'll pay $676.76 per month in principal and interest for every $100,000 you borrow. That's a decline of $5.42 from last week.

15-year mortgage rate moves down, -0.02%

The average rate you'll pay for a 15-year fixed mortgage is 6.67 percent, down 2 basis points since the same time last week.

Monthly payments on a 15-year fixed mortgage at that rate will cost approximately $880 per $100,000 borrowed. Yes, that payment is much bigger than it would be on a 30-year mortgage, but it comes with some big advantages: You'll come out several thousand dollars ahead over the life of the loan in total interest paid and build equity much more rapidly.

5/1 ARM rate climbs, +0.04%

The average rate on a 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage is 6.85 percent, climbing 4 basis points since the same time last week.

Adjustable-rate mortgages, or ARMs, are mortgage loans that come with a floating interest rate. To put it another way, the interest rate will change at regular intervals, unlike fixed-rate mortgages. These loan types are best for people who expect to sell or refinance before the first or second adjustment. Rates could be materially higher when the loan first adjusts, and thereafter.

While borrowers shunned ARMs during the pandemic days of super-low rates, this type of loan has made a comeback as mortgage rates have risen.

Monthly payments on a 5/1 ARM at 6.85 percent would cost about $655 for each $100,000 borrowed over the initial five years, but could climb hundreds of dollars higher afterward, depending on the loan's terms.

Jumbo mortgage rate slides, -0.07%

Today's average rate for jumbo mortgages is 7.22 percent, down 7 basis points since the same time last week. Last month on the 15th, jumbo mortgages' average rate was greater than 7.22 at 7.33 percent.

At the average rate today for a jumbo loan, you'll pay a combined $680.14 per month in principal and interest for every $100,000 you borrow. Compared with last week, that's $4.75 lower.

Refinance rates

Current 30 year mortgage refinance rate drops, -0.04%

The average 30-year fixed-refinance rate is 7.22 percent, down 4 basis points from a week ago. A month ago, the average rate on a 30-year fixed refinance was lower at 7.19 percent.

At the current average rate, you'll pay $680.14 per month in principal and interest for every $100,000 you borrow. Compared with last week, that's $2.71 lower.

Where are mortgage rates heading?

If and when the Fed cuts interest rates depends on incoming economic data, such as the rate of inflation and the jobs market.

The rates on 30-year mortgages mostly follow the 10-year Treasury yield, which changes with the market, while the cost of variable-rate home loans more directly mirror the Fed’s moves.

“The Fed announcement [on May 1] of a slower run-off of Treasurys from its balance sheet should help keep a lid on mortgage rates and we may see brief declines,” says Greg McBride, CFA, Bankrate chief financial analyst. “But the focus will quickly shift back to inflation and until we start seeing better inflation numbers, the risk in mortgage rates remains to the upside.”

Broader economic factors, such as inflation and employment, affect the Fed’s decisions on rate changes, but your rate is also affected by your personal finances. Depending on your credit score, down payment, debts and income, you could be quoted a rate that's higher or lower than the trend.

What today's rates mean for your mortgage

Mortgage rates fluctuate daily, but it appears that, for now, they will remain above the historical lows of recent years. If you’re shopping for a mortgage, it might be wise to lock your rate when you find an affordable loan. If your house-hunt is taking longer than anticipated, revisit your budget so you’ll know exactly how much house you can afford at prevailing market rates.

Keep in mind: You could save thousands over the life of your mortgage by getting at least three loan offers, according to Freddie Mac research. You don’t have to stick with your bank or credit union, either. There are many types of mortgage lenders, including online-only and local, smaller shops.

"All too often, some [homebuyers] take the path of least resistance when seeking a mortgage, in part because the process of buying a home can be stressful, complicated and time-consuming," says Mark Hamrick, senior economic analyst for Bankrate. "But when we’re talking about the potential of saving a lot of money, seeking the best deal on a mortgage has an excellent return on investment. Why leave that money on the table when all it takes is a bit more effort to shop around for the best rate, or lowest cost, on a mortgage?”

More on current mortgage rates

Methodology

Bankrate displays two sets of rate averages that are produced from two surveys we conduct: one daily (“overnight averages”) and the other weekly (“Bankrate Monitor averages”).

The rates on this page represent our overnight averages. For these averages, APRs and rates are based on no existing relationship or automatic payments.

Learn more about Bankrate’s rate averages, editorial guidelines and how we make money.