Fixed Rate Mortgages (FRM)
The most common type of loan option, the traditional fixed-rate mortgage includes monthly principal and interest payments which never change during the loan’s lifetime. Most common loan terms are 30, 20 and 15 year terms.
Adjustable Rate Mortgages (3/1 ARM, 5/1 ARM, 7/1 ARM, 10/1 ARM)
Adjustable-rate mortgages include interest payments which are fixed for the first few years, then adjust based on an index (usually LIBOR), plus a margin (2-6%) after the fixed term ends.
HARP 2.0 is a refinance option for homeowners that are "underwater," meaning they owe more on their home than their home is worth.
FHA home loans are mortgages which are insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), allowing borrowers to get low mortgage rates with a minimal down payment.
VA loans are mortgages guaranteed by the Department of Veteran Affairs. These loans offer military veterans exceptional benefits, including low interest rates and no down payment requirement. This program was designed to help military veterans realize the American dream of home ownership.
Interest Only Mortgages
Interest only mortgages are home loans in which borrowers make monthly payments solely toward the interest accruing on the loan, rather than the principal, for a specified period of time. There is no penalty for paying toward principal on these loans.
Components of an ARM
Prior to choosing a home loan, you should know the advantages and risks of adjustable-rate mortgages to make an informed, prudent decision.
Commonly Used Indexes for ARMs
This article includes a list of the most commonly used indexes by ARM lenders that affect ARM mortgage rates.
Balloon mortgages include a note rate that remains fixed initially, and the principal balance becomes due at the end of the mortgage term.
Reverse Mortgages allow senior homeowners to convert a portion of their home equity into cash while still living in the home.
Graduated Payment Mortgages
Graduated Payment Mortgages are loans in which mortgage payments increase annually for a predetermined period of time (e.g. five or ten years) and becomes fixed for the remaining duration of the loan.
What kind of loan program is best for you?
Should you get a fixed-rate or adjustable rate mortgage? A conventional loan or a government loan? Deciding which mortgage product is best for you will depend largely on your unique circumstances, and there is no one correct answer.