Current mortgage rates in Virginia - March 11, 2014
10 ways to get the best mortgage rates
Whether you’re a first-time homebuyer or a repeat homebuyer, whether you’re buying a home or refinancing into a new loan, locking in the lowest possible mortgage rate is always a top concern. Mortgage rates fluctuate daily and can vary for each mortgage customer depending on personal factors such as credit score.
This page features a list of mortgage lenders and their advertised mortgage interest rates. Below the advertised rates are our latest mortgage articles and tools that will help make your homebuying or refinancing experience as smooth as possible.
Mortgage rates have fallen to their lowest point in decades over the last few years, opening up additional buying and refinancing opportunities for millions of American borrowers. But low mortgage rates never last forever. Whether you’re buying or refinancing, have an interest rate or a range of rates in mind that best suit your budget. Once mortgage rates reach those levels, it’s time to lock in your rate. Remember: mortgage rates always rise faster than they fall.
Mortgage refinance rates in Virginia
30 Yr. Fixed
$969 / month (est)
30 Yr. Fixed
$984 / month (est)
- $200k Loan for Under $805/Month
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- Today's Rate: 2.75% (3% APR)
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The rates were submitted by each individual lender/broker on the date indicated. Rate/APR terms offered by advertisers may differ from those listed above based on the creditworthiness of the borrower and other differences between an individual loan and the loan criteria used for the HSH quotes. More Info.. These quotes are from banks, thrifts and brokers who have paid for a link to their website in the listings above and you can find additional information about their loan programs on their websites. To promote rates on your site, contact email@example.com
Current mortgage rates: March 11, 2014
|30-year Fixed *||4.45||4.44|
|15-year Fixed *||3.53||3.59|
|Mortgage Choices at a Glance|
|Benefits, drawbacks, risks and uses|
|Fixed rate mortgage 30 years||Fixed rate mortgage 15 years|
Fixed rate mortgage 20 years
|Rate changes||Never; fully fixed for entire term||Never; fully fixed for entire term||Usually after fixed period of 3, 5, 7 or 10 years, then annual change typical||Fully variable, typically changing at one-year intervals; some have shorter change intervals||Never; fully fixed for entire term|
|Benefits||Low, stable payment; usually easiest qualification||Stable payments; builds equity faster; lower total interest costs than 30-year term||Lower rates than fully fixed-rate mortgage; can sometimes borrow larger loan amount for same income||Can have lowest interest rates, but qualification may not depend upon today's interest rate||Often has lower interest rate/monthly payment over balloon period than fixed rate; similar to hybrid ARM|
|Drawbacks/Risks||Can have highest total interest cost over time; user may "buy" more rate stability than actually needed, increasing cost||Requires higher income to qualify; less affordable monthly payment; funds commited to payment cannot be used elsewhere||Stable payment for a number of years, then unpredictable; rates can jump by as much as 6 percentage points at first adjustment||Payments fluctuate at each rate change; unpredictable, rates can change as much as 2 percentage points at each adjustment||Loan fully due and payable when balloon period ends; must be paid off or refinanced in unknown market conditions|
|Alternative strategy||Consider Hybrid ARM with appropriate fixed period||Consider 30-year term and prepaying loan to preserve cash-flow flexibility||Consider Fixed rate mortgage or longest possible fixed period, if loan hold period not known||Consider Hybrid ARM to ameliorate rate and payment risks for a given period||Consider Hybrid ARM to ensure continued loan availability|
|These may be useful for…||Purchasing a home; first-time homebuyers; refinancing to improve cash flow/lower payment||Refinancing to lower total interest cost; retiring mortgage more quickly; building or rebuilding equity more quickly||Purchasing or refinancing when time horizon is seven years or shorter, and where borrower can handle increase in monthly payments||Purchasing or refinancing when interest rates are near top of cycle, and are likely to fall, or sale or refinance is anticipated within three years||Purchasing or refinancing when time horizon is three years or longer and home will be sold prior to end of balloon period|
|Consider if||Buying or refinancing a home and planning on owning for longer than 10 years||Buying second home; refinancing to build equity; paying off mortgage before life event (retirement, etc)||Buying a home and expect to move before fixed period ends, or know income will rise to offset payment risk, even in worst-case scenario||Buying or refinancing when income can handle frequent payment changes and worst-case scenario for rates over a four-year period||Buying a home and expect to move before balloon period ends, or have resources to pay off mortgage if refinance not available|
|When shopping, ask about||"Full cost" vs. "No cost" refinances, prepaying loan to shorten term if desired||If 20-year term makes payment too high, whether 25-year term is available||Interest rate caps, for first and subsequent adjustments, worst-case scenario||A history of the Index the loan is keyed off, margin and caps||Whether or not there is any built-in refinancing option when the balloon period ends|
|Useful tools & resources||Mortgage Amortization Calculator||Tri-Refi Calculator||Historical Mortgage Interest Rates||ARM Index Rates||Refinance Calculator|
|Prepayment Calculator||HSH's Guide to ARMs|
10 ways to get the best mortgage rates
No. 1: Establish a baseline. Get a referral from someone you trust and contact that lender to obtain your credit score and discuss your loan options. Your first lender can help you compare FHA and conventional financing, as well as various loan terms so you can make an informed decision on which loan program and term you want before you contact other lenders.
No. 2: Improve your credit score. Conventional lenders charge a higher interest rate for lower credit scores. The best mortgage rates are generally only reserved for those with credit scores above 740. "Most lenders will raise your interest rate incrementally if your score is below 740, 720, 680 and 660,” says Amy Tierce, regional vice president for Fairway Independent Mortgage in Needham, Mass.
There are several things you can to boost your credit score, but it still might take 30 to 90 days or even longer to improve your score significantly.
No. 3: Buy a single-family home. Condominiums are considered a riskier investment because they dropped in value more than other types of homes during the housing crisis, says Tierce, so mortgage rates are usually one-eighth percent higher than for a single-family home. However, if you make a larger down payment of at least 25 percent, that interest rate add-on will not be charged.
No. 4: Shorten your loan term. While the spread between mortgage rates for loan terms vary, Tierce says that generally, 20-year fixed mortgage rates are about one-eighth percent lower than interest rates for a 30-year fixed, and 15-year fixed-rate loans are one-quarter to three-eighths percent lower than 30-year fixed-rate loans.
"You can save thousands on interest payments with a shorter loan term, although you have to make sure you can handle the higher payments," says Mark Fowler of the Residential Finance Corp. in Charlotte, N.C.
No. 5: Increase your down payment. The larger your down payment, the deeper your initial equity stake, thus the less risk you pose to the lender.
While not all lenders have sizable or even distinct price breaks, you might be able to lower your rate by an eighth-percentage point with a 25 percent down payment, rather than just 20 percent. If you can come up with a more sizable equity stake--40 percent, for example--a lender might chop an additional eighth percentage point off the rate.
Of course, there may be better uses of that cash than plowing it into your home just to get a slightly lower interest rate.
No. 6: Ask about fees. The various fees associated with a loan are one reason why you shouldn’t comparison shop solely based on the best advertised rate. Sometimes an advertised rate can be lower than all the rest because of all the fees associated with it.
"Some lenders blend all their fees into a loan preparation fee, while others separate them out, so be sure to ask for the total amount it will cost to close the loan," says Brian Martucci, a mortgage lender with GetLoans.com in Washington, D.C. Generally, a mortgage with higher fees should have a lower interest rate, he says.
If you’re refinancing, use HSH.com's Tri-Refi Refinance Calculator to compare your options for paying closing costs.
No. 7: Pay points. You can use cash to pay discount points to reduce your mortgage rate. Points are considered a prepayment of interest, and each point is equal to one percent of the loan amount.
"Depending on the lender, paying one point will reduce your mortgage rate by one-quarter percent," says Mark Richards, a senior mortgage loan officer for TD Bank in Washington, D.C. "On a $200,000 loan, you'd pay $4,000 to bring down your rate 0.5 percent. You'd only save around $4,000 in the first 10 to11 years, but you'd save $40,000 over the life of the loan with that lower rate."
No. 8: Contact a mix of financial institutions on the same day. Interest rates fluctuate constantly for a variety of reasons, including the occasional promotion of a particular loan product by a particular financial institution. Sometimes a credit union or bank will introduce a new loan product and offer better mortgage rates in order to entice borrowers, says Craig March, a personal mortgage consultant with Inlanta Mortgage in Janesville, Wisc.
"It's best to diversify and try a mix of places such as a direct lender, a regional bank, a credit union, a community bank and a national bank," says March. Also, March says to call each institution within the same timeframe, because mortgage rates could drop dramatically from the morning to the afternoon.
No. 9: Shorten your loan lock-in period. "The longer the lock-in, the higher your interest rate," says Richards. "If you lock in your rate for 60 days, it will be one-eighth percent higher than a 30-day lock, and if you choose a 90-day lock, it will usually be one-third percent higher."
Richards says that most purchase loans take 30 days to close, while a refinance may need 45 to 60 days. If you choose to wait to lock in your rate, you're gambling that mortgage rates won't rise, says Tierce.
No. 10: Know when you want to close. The length of your lock-in period will impact your mortgage rate, so discuss your target close date with each lender and ask what they charge for different loan-lock periods.
"Make sure you tell the lender when you expect the closing to be, because you want to lock-in the interest rate for the right length of time," says Richards. "Many lenders charge one-eighth percent more if you must lock-in the loan for 60 days. If you need a 90-day loan lock your interest rate could be as much as one-third percent higher."
If you can’t follow each of these 10 steps, you may still be able to achieve the best mortgage rates by improving in a few areas. Lenders consider multiple factors to determine your mortgage rate.
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