Mortgage Interest Rates Today, May 15, 2024 | Rates Drop Following Cooler CPI Report

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Average 30-year mortgage rates are down slightly today, according to Zillow data, though they remain in the upper 6% range. Rates may inch down further this week as markets continue to assess the impact of the latest inflation data.

On Wednesday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the Consumer Price Index rose 3.4% year over year in April. This is a slight downtick from the previous month, and in line with what forecasters were expecting. Following the release of this data, the 10-year Treasury yield dropped to its lowest level in five weeks. Mortgage rates typically track this yield.

As inflation slows and the Federal Reserve is able to start lowering the federal funds rate, mortgage rates are expected to go down. Following the release of this latest CPI data, the likelihood of a September Fed cut increased slightly to 53%, according to the CME FedWatch Tool.

In their most recent housing and economic forecasts, Fannie Mae researchers predicted that mortgage rates will inch down as inflation slowly decelerates throughout 2024 and 2025. These forecasters believe 30-year rates could fall to 6.4% by the end of this year and 6.1% by the final quarter of 2025.

Mortgage Rates Today

Mortgage Refinance Rates Today

Mortgage Calculator

Use our free mortgage calculator to see how today's interest rates will affect your monthly payments.

By clicking on "More details," you'll also see how much you'll pay over the entire length of your mortgage, including how much goes toward the principal vs. interest.

30-Year Fixed Mortgage Rates

This week's average 30-year fixed mortgage rate was 7.09%, according to Freddie Mac. This is a 13-basis-point decrease from the previous week.

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

Average 15-year mortgage rates inched up to 6.38% this week, according to Freddie Mac data. This is a nine-point decrease since the week before.

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 Do Fed Rate Hikes Affect Mortgages?

The Federal Reserve has increased the federal funds rate dramatically to try to slow economic growth and get inflation under control. So far, inflation has slowed significantly, but it's still a bit above the Fed's 2% target rate.

Mortgage rates aren't directly impacted by changes to the federal funds rate, but they often trend up or down ahead of Fed policy moves. This is because mortgage rates change based on investor demand for mortgage-backed securities, and this demand is often impacted by how investors expect Fed hikes to affect the broader economy.

The Fed has indicated that it's likely done hiking rates and that it could start cutting this year. This would allow mortgage rates to trend down later this year.

When Will Mortgage Rates Go Down?

Mortgage rates increased dramatically over the last two years, but they're expected to go down at some point this year.

In April 2024, the Consumer Price Index rose 3.4% year over year. Inflation has slowed significantly since it peaked last year, but it need to slow further before rates can trend down more substantially.

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.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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