Comparing Mortgage Rates

Comparing Mortgage Rates

by: John Mussi

When you're getting ready to buy a new house, you're likely going to be confronted with a variety of mortgage options. You might have to choose whether to apply for a standard loan or a balloon mortgage, as well as whether to go for a shorter loan term like 10 years or a longer term of 20 or 30 years.

Regardless of the type of mortgage loan you choose, though, you're going to need to pay special attention to the interest rates that are offered. After all, you'll likely be paying interest at this rate for quite some time… if you find a fixed rate mortgage, you might even be paying that interest rate for 10 or 20 years or more!

Here is some basic information about mortgage interest rates, as well as simple ways that you can shop around and compare interest rates before you commit to any type of mortgage loan.

Defining Interest

The first step to finding a good interest rate is making sure that you know exactly what interest is. As far as loans and mortgages are concerned, interest is the additional fee that you pay when repaying the loan… this is how banks, finance companies, and other lenders make money on the loans that customers take out. Interest rates are based upon rates that are set nationally, and may be higher depending upon local factors.

Your credit rating and the collateral that you use (which is the value of the house being purchased, in the case of a mortgage loan) can also have a drastic effect on the interest rate that you are charged on your loan.

The higher the interest rate is, the more your loan will cost you in the long run… and that's why it's important to do everything that you can to get the best interest rate you can find.

Fixed Rate vs. Variable Rate

When looking for information about interest rates, you might run across references to “fixed rate” and “variable rate” loans. What this refers to is whether or not the interest rate that you're paying can change during the course of your mortgage loan repayment… fixed rate loans have one specific interest rate the entire time that you're repaying the loan, and variable rate loans can change their interest rate depending upon increases and decreases in the national interest rate.

Fixed rate loans are best when interest rates are low, because you can continue to pay that same rate even as national rates climb.

Variable rate loans are better when interest rates are higher, since they allow the interest rate that you're paying to change as interest rates go down later.

Shopping for the Best Rate

In order to get the best interest rate, it's important to shop around and compare loan rates and terms before deciding on a particular mortgage. Request mortgage loan quotes from a variety of banks and finance companies, as well as online lenders… see which lenders offer the mortgage options that you want and what interest rates they charge for those mortgages.

Compare closing costs, fees, and other loan expenses as well, and try to determine which loan is the best one to fill your need.

Once you've figured out which mortgage offers are the best, look at the interest rates with additional scrutiny to see which loan would cost you less in the long run.

Be sure to keep your second option on hand in case something should happen to prevent you from getting the first mortgage.

About The Author

John Mussi is the founder of Direct Online Loans who help homeowners find the best available loans via the website.

Strategies, tips, and tools to achieve short-term and long-term personal finance goals!


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