The days of the 4.25 percent 30-year fixed-rate mortgage may be gone forever.
Mortgage interest rates jumped this week, as the bond market sold off. According to several mortgage brokers I spoke with this week, 30-year interest rates are now being quoted at nearly 5 percent, a huge leap from the low just a few weeks ago.
What does this mean for you? Higher mortgage payments, higher credit card payments and higher auto loan payments. In fact, mortgage rates have risen about 80 basis points (100 basis points equals 1 percent) in the past few months. If you didn’t lock in about a month ago, you didn’t hit the low-water mark for mortgage interest rates.
Interestingly, the Federal Reserve has gone a long way toward pushing down long-term interest rates. But the Fed’s actions are having the opposite effect. Instead of pushing down long-term interest rates even closer to zero, they’re rising. Higher interest rates means you’ll pay more for all of your debts, but it also means that the cost of borrowing will go up for businesses – even as tax rates stay low.
Will mortgage rates go higher or will we see them fall later this year? No one seems to know how this will all turn out. For some additional thoughts, take a look at today’s MoneyWatch.com blog.
Did you lock in at the low? Will you refinance now? Please leave your thoughts and comments on the blog.