Today's Mortgage Rates
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Looking to buy a home in Vermont? Well, unless you've got your own green mountain of money, you'll probably need to get a mortgage if you want to buy a home in the Green Mountain State.
Vermont residents sometimes like to joke that their rural state is a bit behind the times, but when it comes to mortgages, it's been ahead of the curve. Concerned about the possibility that easy credit could lead borrowers into financial difficulty, the state enacted its own "ability to repay" mortgage rules in the 1990s and early 2000s. Those helped Vermont weather the ensuing foreclosure crisis in somewhat better shape than many other states.
Today, the median home sales price in Vermont is about $205,000 (Northern New England Real Estate Network, 2014), about 5 percent below their pre-recession peak. Use the resources on this page and elsewhere on MortgageLoan.com to help you research your mortgage and get the best deal possible for your new home or refinance.
You have several options for either buying a home or refinancing a mortgage in Vermont. The most common type of Vermont home loan is the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage. This loan offers a combination of low monthly payments, by spreading the term out over 30 years, and the security of knowing your interest rate will never go up.
A similar option, the 15-year fixed-rate mortgage, offers lower interest rates than the 30-year variety and is popular with people who are refinancing an existing Vermont mortgage after paying down the balance for a number of years. It may also be chosen as a home purchase option for those who can afford the higher monthly payments, compared to a 30-year loan.
The other major type of home loan is the adjustable-rate mortgage, or ARM. Rather than locking in your original interest rate for the life of the loan, an ARM allows the interest rate to vary over time to reflect current market conditions. This allows you to get a lower initial rate than on a comparable fixed-rate loan, because the lender isn't committing to a set rate for a long period of time.
Most ARMs are structured to give you an initial fixed rate for a certain period of time, often 1, 3, 5, 7 or 10 years, and then adjust every year thereafter. Other variations are also available, however.
ARMs are good choices for Vermont homebuyers who expect to move again or refinance in the next 5-10 years, because they don't need to lock in a rate for three decades. They're also good when interest rates are high and likely to fall over the coming years.
Vermont homeowners who are seeking to refinance their current mortgage can choose either an fixed-rate mortgage or ARM for their new loan, regardless of their current type. Generally, you will want to have at least 20 percent equity before refinancing, in order to avoid paying for mortgage insurance and to obtain the best terms.
Vermont borrowers who have less than 20 percent equity in their homes or who are in negative equity may be able to refinance through the federal HARP (Home Affordable Refinance Program) if they have a mortgage backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. This program is available through the end of 2016 and is offered by most lenders.
A simplified option called a streamlined refinance is available to Vermont homeowners with FHA, VA or USDA mortgages and is available through lenders authorized to make those loans.