Imagine walking on the lot of a local car dealership and asking “What’s the price of cars today?” or asking a stockbroker “What’s the price of stocks today?”  Initially you would probably get more questions than answers.  It’s the same with mortgage rates.  There are several different products to choose from – conventional, FHA, VA, USDA, Native American, 30 year notes, 15 year notes and so on.  Each of those types of loans have different rates.  Most rates are also based on a borrower’s credit score, the amount of the loan, the amount of the loan versus the value of the home and the term of the loan.  Rates for a 30 year conventional loan are drastically different between a borrower with a 750 credit score and 20 percent equity in their home and another borrower with a 640 credit score and only 5% equity. Rates also vary by region of the country.  The risk in California or New York, because of higher foreclosure rates in those areas, is different than here in Oklahoma, so the rates will be different.  If you see a rate published somewhere, make sure you know what you’re getting.  First, published rates are to be published with a corresponding APR, the date available, and the expiration date of the rate.  Secondly, just as gas prices can fluctuate on a daily basis, mortgage rates are on the same type of market and can fluctuate on a daily, even hourly basis.  Ask questions about fees, points, term, down payments.  Otherwise you may be walking off the lot with a Yugo when you thought you were getting a Cadillac!  Have a very blessed Friday!

About the Author: Jolynn Craig

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