Georgia offers a wealth of home options, from the stately mansions of Savannah to high-rise condos in Atlanta. Before you shop, here’s what to expect when it comes to Georgia mortgage rates.
The Best Mortgage Lenders in Georgia for Rates
6 Best Mortgage Lenders in Georgia
Ready to start shopping? Here are the 6 best mortgage companies in Georgia:
1. Best Overall: Quicken Loans®
Quicken Loans® uses technology to make the mortgage process seamless.
You can upload documents online and review its educational tools. It also posts its mortgage rates online for easy comparison shopping. Quicken Loans® offers award-winning customer service.
It offers fixed-rate and adjustable-rate conventional mortgages, proprietary mortgages and FHA and VA loans.
2. Best for First Time Buyers: SunTrust
SunTrust has branches throughout Georgia to assist you. It also has an innovative mobile app to help you through the mortgage process.
You can complete mortgage documents online or through the app. SunTrust offers conventional, FHA and VA mortgages.
3. Best for Online: loanDepot
loanDepot has invested heavily in technology to make your mortgage experience painless.
It’s the 5th largest lender in the country. Even with the technology, you still receive a personal experience through a dedicated loan officer.
loanDepot offers FHA, VA and conventional mortgages.
4. Best for Financial Assistance: Bank of America
Bank of America offers a proprietary mortgage with a 3% down payment requirement.
It also helps connect you with local assistance programs. You can complete an application online with Bank of America or work with a loan officer at a local branch.
Bank of America offers conventional, FHA and VA mortgages.
5. Best for VA Loans: Veterans United
If you’ve logged some time in the military, Veterans United’s loans will likely be the best deal. Unlike other veteran-marketed loan programs, Veterans United only accepts active duty and veteran military members.
In addition to no-down-payment loans, you’ll also eliminate the private mortgage insurance you’ll have to pay with other mortgages.
Veterans United is also more forgiving of lower credit scores. Interest rates are lower than average.
6. CrossCountry Mortgage: Best for Self-Employed
CrossCountry Mortgage makes it easy for all types of home buyers to get approved for a mortgage. Their flexible requirements can help you get financing, with no employment or income verification and no minimum DTI. CrossCountry Mortgage offers traditional loan terms, as well as more flexible home payment plans with their 40-year loan program.
It’s also easier to get approved if you’re self-employed. Tax returns are not required and you’ll only need one year of self-employment income history and a minimum credit score of 580. CrossCountry Mortgage can also help you get approved on assets alone, like your bank statements, stocks and bonds, or retirement accounts.
What is a Mortgage Rate?
A mortgage rate is the cost of borrowing money to purchase a home. When you’re shopping for a mortgage, you may see 2 rates: the interest rate and the APR. The interest rate is applied to your mortgage balance each month. The APR is the total cost of your mortgage, including fees and mortgage insurance. This means the APR is typically higher than the interest rate. It’s important to consider both.
What Factors Impact Your Mortgage Rate?
Lenders base mortgage rates on economic factors. Lenders also look at your financial background to determine your personal rate. Here’s a closer look at what impacts your mortgage rate:
- The economy: Lenders keep a close eye on the economy. When indicators like the unemployment rate show the economy is slowing down, lenders lower interest rates. This is to encourage consumers to buy homes. When the economy improves, mortgage rates go up.
- Inflation: Inflation refers to the rising cost of consumer goods. For example, the cost of gas has gone from less than $1 per gallon to $3 or more. Lenders need to make sure that their interest rates cover the cost of inflation.
- Your down payment: Lenders typically offer you a lower interest rate if you make a larger down payment. This is because putting more money down lowers the risk to the lender. The lender doesn’t have to loan you as much money to buy your house. It also lowers your monthly payments.
- Your credit history: Lenders evaluate borrowers to decide how risky it is to lend them money. They review your credit history, looking at your payment history, the age of your credit and how much credit you’re using.
Each lender determines its rates, which is why it’s essential to get more than one purchase quote when you’re mortgage shopping.
What is a Mortgage Type?
When you contact lenders for a purchase or refinance quote, you’ll notice different types of mortgages. Here are the most common types of mortgages:
- Conventional: A government agency doesn't insure a conventional mortgage. These mortgages may require a higher credit score than government-backed mortgages. They may also require a higher down payment.
- FHA: The Federal Housing Administration insures FHA mortgages. These mortgages have a low down payment requirement of 3.5%. To make the minimum down payment, you need a credit score of 580 or higher. You can still qualify with a credit score of 500-580 if you make a down payment of 10% or more.
- USDA: The U.S. Department of Agriculture backs USDA mortgages. These mortgages have income limits. If you qualify, you may be able to purchase a home with no down payment. The homes must be in approved rural areas.
- VA: The Department of Veterans Affairs insures VA mortgages. These mortgages are available to current and retired service members and some spouses. If you qualify, you may be able to obtain a mortgage with no down payment. VA mortgages also don’t require mortgage insurance and have a one-time funding fee. You can roll the funding fee into the cost of the loan. Disabled veterans can have the funding fee waived.
Private lenders offer government-backed mortgages. The government agencies approve the lenders to ensure they know how to evaluate borrowers for their programs. When you contact lenders, let them know what type of mortgage you prefer. That makes it simple to compare quotes.
What is a Mortgage Term?
Your mortgage term is the maximum amount of time you have to repay your loan. You can pay off your mortgage sooner if you make additional payments. Here are a few common mortgage terms:
- 30-year fixed: A 30-year fixed-rate mortgage has the same interest rate for the entire term. If you only make the minimum monthly payments, you will repay your loan in 30 years. Since the interest rate is the same, your monthly payments also stay the same.
- 15-year fixed: A 15-year fixed-rate mortgage will last for up to 15 years. It has the same interest rate — and the same monthly payments — for the entire term. These mortgages typically have a lower interest rate than a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage.
- 5/1 ARM: A 5/1 ARM is an adjustable-rate mortgage. ARMs typically start with a fixed-rate introductory period. After the introductory period, the lender will adjust the interest rate up or down based on market conditions. This means your monthly payment may increase or decrease. A 5/1 ARM has a 5-year introductory period followed by adjustments once per year.
The best mortgage term for you depends on factors such as the monthly payment and how long you plan to keep the home. A 30-year fixed-rate mortgage will typically have a lower monthly payment than a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage. You will pay more in interest over time with a 30-year mortgage.
Current Mortgage Rates in Georgia
Georgia’s mortgage rates are trending close to the national average. Fixed-rate mortgages are slightly lower, while a 5/1 ARM is slightly higher. Mortgage rates change daily Monday through Friday. Rates sometimes change multiple times throughout the day. Lenders change rates in response to economic and housing market changes. At Benzinga, we frequently update our rates to reflect the most relevant data.
Calculating Interest in Georgia
Lenders calculate your mortgage interest each month. Your loan balance is paid off gradually over your loan term. Each month, your mortgage payment goes toward your loan balance, interest and other expenses like property taxes. You pay down your loan balance a little bit each month. This means that every month you pay less in interest and more toward your balance. At the end of your loan term, your home is completely paid off.
Your loan term determines the amount of interest you pay over the life of your mortgage. Here are examples of how much you pay in interest in 4 Georgia cities:
|City||Average Home Value||Loan Term||Current Rate||Downpayment (20%)||Monthly Payment||Total Interest Paid|
Lender Credit Score Minimums in Georgia
Your credit score is a 3-digit number that sums up your credit history. Lenders use this number to establish minimum credit scores. Scores range from 300–850. Lenders consider a score of 700 or higher to be good or excellent.
You may need to take steps to improve your credit if you don’t meet the minimum scores required by lenders. Make it a priority to pay down your credit card balances or resolve accounts that are late or in collections.
Here are the minimum scores required by several Georgia lenders:
Finding the Right Georgia Mortgage for You
Finding the right mortgage takes time. Contact multiple lenders and look carefully at your loan estimates. Choose the lender with the best rate and service. If you’re not sure where to start, consider local programs.
One option for moderate-income homebuyers is the Georgia Dream program. It’s available to first time homebuyers and homebuyers purchasing a home in targeted areas. The program offers down payment assistance and a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage. If you’re interested in exploring this, you can contact a participating lender.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I get pre-approved?
First, you need to fill out an application and submit it to the lender of your choice. For the application you need 2 previous years of tax returns including your W-2’s, your pay stub for past month, 2 months worth of bank statements and the lender will run your credit report. Once the application is submitted and processed it takes anywhere from 2-7 days to be approved or denied. Check out our top lenders and lock in your rate today!
How much interest will I pay?
Interest that you will pay is based on the interest rate that you received at the time of loan origination, how much you borrowed and the term of the loan. If you borrow $208,800 at 3.62% then over the course of a 30-year loan you will pay $133,793.14 in interest, assuming you make the monthly payment of $951.65. For a purchase mortgage rate get a quote here. If you are looking to refinance you can get started quickly here.
How much should I save for a down payment?
Most lenders will recommend that you save at least 20% of the cost of the home for a down payment. It is wise to save at least 20% because the more you put down, the lower your monthly payment will be and ultimately you will save on interest costs as well. In the event that you are unable to save 20% there are several home buyer programs and assistance, especially for first time buyers. Check out the lenders that specialize in making the home buying experience a breeze.
Get Ready for Take Off
Rocket Mortgage® is an online mortgage experience developed by the firm formerly known as Quicken Loans®, America’s largest mortgage lender. Rocket Mortgage® makes it easy to get a mortgage — you just tell the company about yourself, your home, your finances and Rocket Mortgage® gives you real interest rates and numbers. You can use Rocket Mortgage® to get approved, ask questions about your mortgage, manage your payments and more.
You can work at your own pace and someone is always there to answer your questions — 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Want a fast, convenient way to get a mortgage? Give Rocket Mortgage® a try.