When a Fixed Rate Mortgage is the Best Option

Mortgages are not one-size-fits all financing options. The type of mortgage that is right for your neighbor may be disastrous for your personal financial situation. Also, there is a major misconception that fixed rate mortgages are always the best option. Always is a strong term and there aren’t many things in this world that are “always.” The same is true with fixed rate mortgages.

So when is a fixed rate mortgage the way to go?

Personal Situation

The first aspect of your life you to need to review is your financial situation. Ask yourself the following questions to gain a better understanding of where you stand.

1. How long will I realistically live in or own this home? No matter how many years you say, see if there is a mortgage that matches or comes to close to the number of years in your answer. For example, if you say five years then a mortgage fixed for five years may afford you a lower interest rate than a 30 year fixed. 

2.  Do I live on a fixed income or will it stress me out if my monthly mortgage payment fluctuates? If you need to know exactly how much your monthly mortgage payment is going to be at all times or it stresses you out to think of your payment changing, then a fixed rate mortgage is the most beneficial one for you.

3. Did I have my past mortgage(s) for the entire time I lived in the home or did I refinance or sell before the end of the mortgage? The national American average reveals that homes are refinanced or sold in five to seven years. This means that it’s rare, if not non-existent, to hold a mortgage for a 15 or 30 year period. So if you can get a lower interest rate and lower monthly mortgage payment with another type of fixed rate or variable rate mortgage then it may be worth looking into it.

Interest Rate Environment

The other major item you need to consider before deciding on a fixed rate mortgage is the current interest rate environment. If the current interest rates are low, then locking in on the low rate with a fixed rate mortgage probably is the best way to go. If interest rates are high and are expected to drop in the near future, then a fixed rate mortgage may not be the best option as part of your long-term strategy.

When is a fixed rate mortgage the best option? It depends on your personal financial situation, emotional state and current interest rates. Long-term and short-term considerations can also affect your decision, so keep all of these things in mind when choosing your next mortgage

 The Meredith Mortgage Team