The Best Way to Lock in a Mortgage Rate

The Best Way to Lock in a Mortgage Rate

Unfortunately for buyers, lenders, and speculators, there’s no one golden hour for locking in a mortgage rate. Mortgage rates, which are derived from a number of economic factors (though primarily the buying and selling of liquid mortgage loans in the primary and secondary market) are in a constant state of flux, changing from day to day – and, sometimes, from hour to hour.

And while experts are able to track and predict trends about mortgage rates – for instance, that interest rates are expected to rise as we move into 2016 – locking in your rate comes down to your circumstances and timeline.

The number of days you choose to lock is a major factor affecting your rate. You can choose to lock your rate for a specific number of days; generally, the fewer days that you choose, the lower your cost – and rate – will be. Of course, this timing depends on whether you’re pursuing a purchase loan or a refinancing loan; locking in a purchase loan is dependent on the closing date of your contract, while refinancing must be locked before you submit your loan file to underwriting.

You might also choose to “float” your rate and wait to see if rates come down; while this may pay off in the form of a slightly lower rate, waiting may also mean the difference between locking in your ideal rate and compromising on one that’s less-than-perfect.

So what’s a mortgage shopper to do?

How can you track rates when they shift so rapidly, based on global market factors that are outside of your control?

There are a few accessible online tools that can help you follow mortgage rates. Our friends over at The Mortgage Reports have a handy, constantly-updating blog on current mortgage rate news.

Mortgage Reports also has an easy-to-use, interactive chart that helps you determine your personalized rate quote. Guiding you through a series of screens, the quote generator asks you a series of basic questions (such as selecting your property and loan type, your location, a basic appraisal of your credit score, and an estimate on the value of your current property) and, from there, helps you easily pinpoint the current rate for your area and budget.

And we have the resources to assist you with locking in your best-case mortgage rate: We recommend you reach out to one of our recommended mortgage lenders to help guide you through your unique situation. And we’ve got tips and guides to help you decide on what mortgage – and what time – is right for you.

Have any more questions or concerns? Ready to start making the move to a new home but not sure how to start? Drop Real Group a line! We’ll be there for you, from your first browse of our listings to the day of your closing. 

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Chicago, IL 60614

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