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January
11

Mortgage and refinance rates today, Jan. 10, 2023

Today's mortgage and refinance rates

Average mortgage rates fell again yesterday, though much more modestly than they did last Friday.

So far this morning, markets are signaling that mortgage rates today might move higher. But the momentum was not strong and could change later in the day.

Find your lowest rate. Start here (Jan 11th, 2023)

Current mortgage and refinance rates

Program Mortgage Rate APR* Change
Conventional 30 year fixed 6.359% 6.393% -0.02% 
Conventional 15 year fixed 5.473% 5.528% -0.01% 
Conventional 20 year fixed 6.074% 6.131% -0.01% 
Conventional 10 year fixed 5.695% 5.817% -0.03% 
30 year fixed FHA 6.12% 6.862% +0.03% 
15 year fixed FHA 5.659% 6.152% Unchanged
30 year fixed VA 6.091% 6.324% +0.03% 
15 year fixed VA 6.122% 6.48% -0.12% 
Conventional 5 year ARM 6.399% 6.753% -0.05% 
5/1 ARM FHA 6.399% 7.007% -0.05% 
5/1 ARM VA 6.399% 7.007% -0.05% 
Rates are provided by our partner network, and may not reflect the market. Your rate might be different. Click here for a personalized rate quote. See our rate assumptions here.

Should you lock a mortgage rate today?

Don't lock on a day when mortgage rates look set to fall. My recommendations (below) are intended to give longer-term suggestions about the overall direction of those rates. So, they don't change daily to reflect fleeting sentiments in volatile markets.

Keep reading for my main reason for not yet changing my personal rate lock recommendations, which for now remain:

  • LOCK if closing in 7 days
  • LOCK if closing in 15 days
  • LOCK if closing in 30 days
  • LOCK if closing in 45 days
  • LOCK if closing in 60 days

Market data affecting today's mortgage rates

Here's a snapshot of the state of play this morning at about 9:50 a.m. (ET). The data, compared with roughly the same time yesterday, were:

  • The yield on 10-year Treasury notes inched lower to 3.57% from 3.58%. (Good for mortgage rates.) However, they were rising this morning, which is bad. More than any other market, mortgage rates typically tend to follow these particular Treasury bond yields
  • Major stock indexes were mostly a little higher soon after opening. (Sometimes bad for mortgage rates.) When investors buy shares, they're often selling bonds, which pushes those prices down and increases yields and mortgage rates. The opposite may happen when indexes are lower. But this is an imperfect relationship
  • Oil prices fell back to $75.22 from $75.89 a barrel. (Good for mortgage rates*.) Energy prices play a prominent role in creating inflation and also point to future economic activity
  • Gold prices edged down to $1,879 from $1,882 an ounce. (Neutral for mortgage rates*.) It is generally better for rates when gold rises and worse when gold falls. Gold tends to rise when investors worry about the economy.
  • CNN Business Fear & Greed index — inched down to 52 from 53 out of 100. (Good for mortgage rates.) "Greedy" investors push bond prices down (and interest rates up) as they leave the bond market and move into stocks, while "fearful" investors do the opposite. So lower readings are often better than higher ones

*A movement of less than $20 on gold prices or 40 cents on oil ones is a change of 1% or less. So we only count meaningful differences as good or bad for mortgage rates.

Caveats about markets and rates

Before the pandemic and the Federal Reserve's interventions in the mortgage market, you could look at the above figures and make a pretty good guess about what would happen to mortgage rates that day. But that's no longer the case. We still make daily calls. And are usually right. But our record for accuracy won't achieve its former high levels until things settle down.

So, use markets only as a rough guide. Because they have to be exceptionally strong or weak to rely on them. But, with that caveat, mortgage rates today look likely to rise. However, be aware that "intraday swings" (when rates change speed or direction during the day) are a common feature right now.

Find your lowest rate. Start here (Jan 11th, 2023)

Important notes on today's mortgage rates

Here are some things you need to know:

  1. Typically, mortgage rates go up when the economy's doing well and down when it's in trouble. But there are exceptions. Read 'How mortgage rates are determined and why you should care'
  2. Only "top-tier" borrowers (with stellar credit scores, big down payments and very healthy finances) get the ultralow mortgage rates you'll see advertised
  3. Lenders vary. Yours may or may not follow the crowd when it comes to daily rate movements — though they all usually follow the broader trend over time
  4. When daily rate changes are small, some lenders will adjust closing costs and leave their rate cards the same
  5. Refinance rates are typically close to those for purchases.

A lot is going on at the moment. And nobody can claim to know with certainty what will happen to mortgage rates in the coming hours, days, weeks or months.

Are mortgage and refinance rates rising or falling?

Regular readers will know that mortgage rates are largely determined by a type of bond called a mortgage-backed security (MBS). And that those rates often shadow the yield for 10-year Treasury notes.

The reason both those rates and those yields have been falling recently is that investors have suddenly grown enamored of all types of bonds. The extra demand has pushed up prices. But bond yields (and so mortgage rates) always move inversely to prices.

The reason I'm yet to change my rate lock recommendations (above) is that I'm still not convinced investors will keep buying bonds in the volumes they've been doing so far this year. They seem to be doing so because they've persuaded themselves that the Federal Reserve will stop hiking rates sooner than expected.

Yesterday, I quoted The Wall Street Journal's doubts about how realistic that expectation is. And, also yesterday, CNN Business's Before the Bell e-newsletter raised other doubts. Its headline read, "Bonds are back, but for how long?"

The article went on: "Now investors are betting that those rate increases are mostly over and that inflationary pressures are on a downswing. … The problem is that there's no guarantee that interest rates will actually come down, and investors could find themselves blindsided if they don't."

If investors do find themselves blindsided, that could be very bad news indeed for mortgage rates.

And there's plenty of concern among some pretty distinguished people. Last Friday, on Bloomberg TV, former Treasury Secretary Larry Summers predicted "tumult" for bonds through this year.

Of course, nobody knows for sure what will happen in the future to bonds or mortgage rates. But I see too much scope for trouble to urge anything other than caution.

According to Freddie Mac's archives, the weekly all-time low for mortgage rates was set on Jan. 7, 2021, when it stood at 2.65% for conventional, 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages.

Freddie's Jan. 5 report put that same weekly average at 6.48%, up from the previous week's 6.42%.

In November, Freddie stopped including discount points in its forecasts. It has also moved later in the day the time at which it publishes its Thursday reports. And, from now on, we'll be updating this section on Fridays.

Expert mortgage rate forecasts

Looking further ahead, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) each has a team of economists dedicated to monitoring and forecasting what will happen to the economy, the housing sector and mortgage rates.

And here are their rate forecasts for the current quarter (Q4/22) and the first three quarters of next year (Q1/23, Q2/23 and Q3/24).

The numbers in the table below are for 30-year, fixed-rate mortgages. Fannie's and the MBA's forecasts appeared on Dec. 19 and Freddie's on Oct. 21. Freddie now publishes its forecasts quarterly and its figures can quickly become stale.

Forecaster Q4/22 Q1/23 Q2/23 Q3/23
Fannie Mae 6.7% 6.5%  6.4% 6.2%
Freddie Mac 6.8% 6.6%  6.5% 6.4%
MBA 6.6% 6.2%  5.6% 5.4%

Of course, given so many unknowables, the whole current crop of forecasts might be even more speculative than usual. And their past record for accuracy hasn't been wildly impressive.

Find your lowest rate today

You should comparison shop widely, no matter what sort of mortgage you want. As federal regulator the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau says:

"Shopping around for your mortgage has the potential to lead to real savings. It may not sound like much, but saving even a quarter of a point in interest on your mortgage saves you thousands of dollars over the life of your loan."

Time to make a move? Let us find the right mortgage for you (Jan 11th, 2023)

Mortgage rate methodology

The Mortgage Reports receives rates based on selected criteria from multiple lending partners each day. We arrive at an average rate and APR for each loan type to display in our chart. Because we average an array of rates, it gives you a better idea of what you might find in the marketplace. Furthermore, we average rates for the same loan types. For example, FHA fixed with FHA fixed. The end result is a good snapshot of daily rates and how they change over time.

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