Today’s Mortgage and Refinance Rates: August 21, 2023 | 7% Seems Like the New Normal

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Mortgage rates have been high overall this month, especially since the Federal Reserve increased rates at its last meeting and inflation increased year over year in July.

Rising inflation and federal funds rates keep mortgage rates high. But if inflation calms down later this year and the Fed stops hiking rates, mortgage rates could go down as a result.

Current Mortgage Rates

Current Refinance Rates

Mortgage Calculator

Use our free mortgage calculator to see how today’s mortgage rates would impact your monthly payments. By plugging in different rates and term lengths, you’ll also understand how much you’ll pay over the entire length of your mortgage.

Mortgage Calculator


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$1,161
Your estimated monthly payment

  • Paying a 25% higher down payment would save you $8,916.08 on interest charges
  • Lowering the interest rate by 1% would save you $51,562.03
  • Paying an additional $500 each month would reduce the loan length by 146 months

Click “More details” for tips on how to save money on your mortgage in the long run.

30-year Fixed Mortgage Rates

The 30-year mortgage rates have been hovering around or over 6.5% for much of 2023.

The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is the most common type of home loan. With this type of mortgage, you’ll pay back what you borrowed over 30 years, and your interest rate won’t change for the life of the loan.

The lengthy 30-year term allows you to spread out your payments over a long period of time, meaning you can keep your monthly payments lower and more manageable. The trade-off is that you’ll have a higher rate than you would with shorter terms or adjustable rates. 

15-year Fixed Mortgage Rates

The 15-year fixed mortgage rate is lower than the 30-year rate, but still high overall.

If you want the predictability that comes with a fixed rate but are looking to spend less on interest over the life of your loan, a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage might be a good fit for you. Because these terms are shorter and have lower rates than 30-year fixed-rate mortgages, you could potentially save tens of thousands of dollars in interest. However, you’ll have a higher monthly payment than you would with a longer term.

How Does an Adjustable-Rate Mortgage Work?

ARM rates start with an introductory period where your rate will remain fixed for a certain period of time. Once that period is up, it will begin to adjust periodically — typically once per year or once every six months.

How much your rate will change depends on the index that the ARM uses and the margin set by the lender. Lenders choose the index that their ARMs use, and this rate can trend up or down depending on current market conditions.

The margin is the amount of interest a lender charges on top of the index. You should shop around with multiple lenders to see which one offers the lowest margin.

ARMs also come with limits on how much they can change and how high they can go. For example, an ARM might be limited to a 2% increase or decrease every time it adjusts, with a maximum rate of 8%.

Are Mortgage Rates Going Down?

Mortgage rates started ticking up from historic lows in the second half of 2021 and increased over three percentage points in 2022. Mortgage rates have been volatile so far in 2023, but they’re relatively high overall.

As inflation starts to come down, mortgage rates will recede somewhat as well. If we experience a recession, rates may drop a little faster. But average 30-year fixed rates will likely remain somewhere in the 6% to 7% range in the near term.

Will mortgage rates go down? 5 reasons you shouldn’t wait for rates to drop »

For homeowners looking to leverage their home’s value to cover a big purchase — such as a home renovation — a home equity line of credit (HELOC) may be a good option while we wait for mortgage rates to ease. Check out some of our best HELOC lenders to start your search for the right loan for you.

A HELOC is a line of credit that lets you borrow against the equity in your home. It works similarly to a credit card in that you borrow what you need rather than getting the full amount you’re borrowing in a lump sum. It also lets you tap into the money you have in your home without replacing your entire mortgage, like you’d do with a cash-out refinance.

Current HELOC rates are relatively low compared to other loan options, including credit cards and personal loans. 

Molly Grace

Mortgage Reporter

Molly Grace is a reporter at Insider. She covers mortgage rates, refinance rates, lender reviews, and homebuying articles for Personal Finance Insider.
Before joining the Insider team, Molly was a blog writer for Rocket Companies, where she wrote educational articles about mortgages, homebuying, and homeownership.
You can reach Molly at mgrace@insider.com, or on Twitter @mollythegrace.


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