What is a 15-Year Fixed Rate Mortgage?
The X amount of years can be a big deciding factor when choosing your mortgage. The most common fixed mortgage terms are 15 and 30 years, though some go up to 40 years and some can be as low as 10 years, depending on the amount of the loan and your monthly payments
15-year mortgages typically have fixed interest rates, which means you’ll pay the same amount every month, every year (though taxes and insurance costs may change). They’re also usually amortizing loans, which means that you pay the principal + interest in one monthly rate.
Compare our Top Lenders for 15-Year Mortgages
|Lender||Required Credit Score||Best Feature||Visit|
Real-time online quotes
|Varies||Lots of educational info available online||View Rates|
The Pros and Cons of a 15-Year Fixed Rate Mortgage
|Own your home faster||Higher monthly payments|
|Get lower interest rates||You may qualify for less expensive properties only|
|Save money||Lose out on possible interest reduction due to fixed rate|
Rate History and Trends
While 15-year mortgages come with fixed rates, there are different types of loans that will affect your rates and APR. Bear in mind that rates change from day-to-day, so don’t be surprised if you get different quotes on different days or weeks.
Below is a table with the April 2018 rates for different types of 15-year loans. These rates are for people with excellent FICO scores (740+) and for single-family houses. Your personal rate will depend on a number of factors, including your credit score, cost of the house, your down payment, and more.
|Loan||Rate||1-Week Rate Change||1-Week APR Change|
Conventional 15-Year Fixed Rate
-.04% to .04%
15-Year Fixed Rate FHA Loan
15-Year Fixed Rate VA Loan
15-Year Fixed Rate Jumbo Loan
Is a 15-Year Mortgage Best For You?
A 15-year mortgage is good if you:
- Can afford higher monthly payments
- Can consistently pay on time
- Want to own a home faster
- Have money left to spend on daily necessities and saving after making payments
Unlike 15-year fixed rate mortgages, standard 30-year mortgages are better for people looking for lower monthly payments—but they come with higher interest. If you have the income to afford a higher monthly payment that will come with a 15-year mortgage, you’ll develop equity more quickly and pay less over the course of your loan for a home of equal value.
Our Top Lenders for 15-Year Mortgage
Minimum down payment: 5%
Quicken Loans offers a quick application process and fast pre-approval for potential borrowers. Rates are updated daily, and there are a lot of loan options available. If you’re looking for a jumbo 30-year mortgage loan, Quicken can lend up to $3 million to qualified customers.
- Online home buyers guide
- Email and text rate updates
- Fast online application
Best for: Tech-friendly borrowers
Standout feature: Low rates and online customer service
Minimum down payment: Varies per customer
If you’re looking for a 30-year mortgage, there are few options out there that can match the ease and convenience of Better mortgage.
The company is an all-digital platform that looks at your goals and means in order to develop a personalized loan for you. And all of the rates offered by Better are backed up by the Better Price Guarantee, which promises that the company will beat any competing price, and even beat it by $1,000.
There are no origination or lender fees and no commission. That said, there are prepayment penalties. Better allows you to lock in your rate and connects you with a single loan officer once you've finished the pre-approval process.
No origination or lender fees
Many different fixed and variable rate loans
Fast approval process
Best for: Simple, online mortgage
Standout feature: Instant loan estimates
- Lots of educational info available online
- Strong financial institution
Paramount Bank is a solid financial institution that offers both private and business banking and mortgage loans to the general public. The company is an HUD-approved lender that provides a wide variety of financial products to better assist its clients, including jumbo programs, federal-backed loans, and conventional mortgages. With pre-approval, fast online pre-approval, and cool online tools, Paramount Bank really makes mortgages easier.
Best for: Families looking to buy or refinance homes
Biggest perk: Smooth and hassle-free home loan process
If you use any of the above lending institutions to apply for a 15-year mortgage, the application process is fairly easy.
- Fill out your personal information online (name, date of birth, location of house, cost of house, credit score) and the size of your down payment. In most situations, you can pre-qualify in a matter of minutes.
- Once you pre-qualify and are shown various loan options, you can then choose the loan that suits you best.
- Then you’ll need to provide more detailed information in order to actually qualify for the loan, such as:
- Proof of income, such as pay stubs
- Tax documentation
- Disclosure of debts, assets, and other paperwork proving your financial standing
- Copies of your most recent credit card statements
While many lenders allow you to upload the paperwork online, you can also reach out to a customer service representative for whichever company you choose. Because taking out a mortgage is a big decision, it can be reassuring to speak to a knowledgeable rep and get advice that might not be included on the website.
A 15-year mortgage is a good option for anyone who can afford relatively high monthly payments and who is eager to pay off their loans quickly. 15-year mortgages typically have lower interest rates than 30-year mortgages, which can save borrowers money in the long term. However, before jumping into anything, it’s important to review your finances and make sure that you will indeed be able to make significant monthly payments consistently for the next 15 years. Compare the top lenders and read up about their features to get the terms that are right for you.