Once you’ve decided to buy a home, your next step is to look into the type of mortgage that makes sense for you. With so many options, how do you choose? We’ve put together this mortgage guide to help you understand the pros and cons of a 15-year mortgage and its current mortgage rates.
|Mortgage Lender||Current 15-Year Mortgage Rate|
|Bank of America||3.000%|
*Rates as of 3/18/20, for the most current rate, click on the lender above.
15-Year Mortgage Advantages
If you’re thinking about a 15-year or a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage loan, you’re going to want to compare the pros and cons. Let’s go over the advantages of the 15-year mortgage first:
- You’ll pay your mortgage off quicker. When it comes to fixed-rate mortgages, you’ll see a 30-year mortgage is most common. If you choose a 15-year mortgage, however, you’ll be able to pay off your mortgage quicker than if you chose a 30-year mortgage.
- Interest rates are usually lower. Your mortgage payments will be divided into principal and interest payments. The principal payment is the amount that you are actually paying toward the money that you borrowed to buy your home. The interest payments are what you are paying in addition to that. This money is a financial gain for your lender because it is solely designed to pay them for loaning you money for your home. Your interest rate will be based on a number of factors, including your credit score and the type of mortgage loan you choose. Lenders tend to offer lower interest rates for 15-year fixed-rate mortgages compared to 30-year rates.
- You’ll pay less over the lifetime of your loan. An important thing to understand about interest is that you’ll be paying your interest rate with each monthly mortgage payment. So if you have fewer monthly mortgage payments, you’ll also be making fewer interest payments. Choosing a 15-year mortgage allows you to make fewer payments altogether, so you’ll be paying less interest over the lifetime of your loan than you would with a longer-term mortgage loan.
15-Year Mortgage Disadvantages
There are some disadvantages to know:
- Your monthly payments will be higher. While there are certainly pros to a 15-yea/r fixed/-rate mortgage, you also need to consider your monthly costs. Since you’ll be splitting the total cost of your mortgage into a shorter period of time, you can expect your monthly payments to be higher with a 15-year mortgage.
- You may not be able to get qualified for as much money as you need. When you take out a mortgage loan, lenders will only approve you for the amount of money they can comfortably trust you to manage to pay back in monthly installments. Since your monthly payments will be higher with a 15-year mortgage, you can expect that you may not be approved for as much money as you would if you chose a 30-year mortgage. This is something you should take into consideration.
- You may not be able to invest your money in other ways. It’s easy to get a one-track-mind about financial decisions, isn’t it? Even if a 15-year mortgage sounds great to you right now, it’s important to look at your financial decisions as a whole. If you have other financial goals, you’ll want to make sure that you are not using all of your money on your mortgage each month. For example, if you want to put money into stocks or other investments, you might not be able to do so. Spending more of your income on your mortgage also means that you’ll have less money left for savings.
Best Mortgage Lenders for a 15-Year Loan
If you’re hooked in a 15-year mortgage loan, then it’s time to start looking at the best mortgage lenders. You’ll find that most lenders probably offer a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage loan. But the right lender for you will depend on a number of factors, so it’s important to choose and compare a select few.
Here are some of our recommended lenders for 15-year mortgage loans:
Best Overall: Quicken Loans®
If you’ve looked for an online mortgage, you’ve probably seen Quicken Loans pop up in your search results. Quicken Loans is a great mortgage lender, even if you’re not completely sure which type of mortgage you want yet. It offers several mortgage types and terms, including a 15-year mortgage.
You can even take advantage of the Quicken Loans YOURgage® product, which allows you to create a custom fixed-rate loan with a term that can be 8–29 years. Quicken Loans also offers competitive interest rates and home loan experts who can help you navigate any questions that come up throughout the mortgage process.
Best for Veterans: Veterans United
If you’re a veteran, it can be helpful to work with a lender who specializes in helping veterans and service members choose the right mortgage. Veterans United can help you review the options available to you and answer any questions that you have about your mortgage. You’ll also benefit from Veterans United’s commitment to hiring people who have served in all of the branches of the armed forces. This is a lender that truly understands its customers and strives to help you through the mortgage process. You can receive an online prequalification from Veterans United and reach its customer service team 24/7.
Best for Self-Employed Professionals: Luxury Mortgage
Luxury Mortgage makes it easy for self-employed 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. Luxury 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. Luxury Mortgage can also help you get approved on assets alone, like your bank statements, stocks and bonds, or retirement accounts.
Luxury Mortgage is licensed to lend in Connecticut, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and Washington.
Best for an Online Mortgage Process: Better.com
If you want a lender who can offer a quick and easy process, Better.com might be right for you. It does not charge commission or origination fees, saving you money right from the start. You can get a quote from Better.com in just a few moments.
Better.com also offers verified pre-approvals that can be available for you in as little as 24 hours.
Best for FHA Loans: Rocket Mortgage® by Quicken Loans®
If you’re using a government-sponsored loan program such as an FHA loan, you’re going to need to find a lender who participates. FHA loans are designed to help low- and moderate-income borrowers afford to purchase a home. As with most mortgage programs, you’ll need to meet specific requirements to qualify for an FHA loan. This includes home inspections and personal requirements, such as a minimum credit score.
Rocket Mortgage® by Quicken Loans® has a top-notch customer service team that can help you navigate the process of getting an FHA mortgage loan. It offers an intuitive application process that only needs you to answer a few questions. This will allow you to get into your new home quicker and can be especially helpful if you live in an area where homes go off the market quickly.
Is a 15-Year Mortgage Right for Me?
Before we wrap up, let’s go over some of the highlights. If you’re a first-time home buyer, you may have stumbled upon this article while doing some research. Choosing your mortgage type and your lender are huge decisions, and that’s why Benzinga is here to help.
Here are some things you should consider when you start to look at and compare mortgages:
- Do you qualify for any mortgage programs? There are so many mortgage programs out there that can help to make buying a home more affordable. Check out the programs available in your state to see if any of them can help you. Don’t forget about the national programs too, such as FHA, VA and USDA loans.
- What’s your financial situation? Each lender has its own set of requirements to approve you for a mortgage. This includes your credit score, your income, your employment history and your debt-to-income ratio. You’ll want to have all of your necessary documents together to present an accurate picture of your financial situation to your lender.
- How much will it cost to buy your home? There are certain things you’ll want to have in your home and it’s time to decide what to prioritize. Think about things like how many bedrooms and bathrooms you need, and how big you want your yard to be. You should also think about whether you want to buy a home to renovate or if you want it to be move-in ready. All of these considerations affect your budget and how much you can afford to pay each month.
You can see today what rates lenders can offer you by getting a quick and free online quote. Enter your ZIP code to get started today.
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