Use our Mortgage Comparison Calculator to compare the monthly payment, total interest expense and closing costs for up to three mortgages. The calculator simplifies the process of comparing mortgage quotes from multiple lenders which often vary widely and use different terminology. You can use this information to select the mortgage, program and lender that are right for you.Watch our Mortgage Comparison Calculator "How To" video
Because loan terms differ significantly by lender and program, our calculator enables you to perform a comparison of multiple mortgages. To use the calculator input the loan amount and length, interest rate and closing costs for the mortgages you want to compare.
You can input different values for all three mortgages. For example, you can compare a 15 year mortgage with a 3.000% mortgage rate and $2,000 in closing costs to a 20 year mortgage with a 3.500% rate and $2,5000 in costs to a 30 year mortgage with a 4.000% rate and $1,500 in costs.
This enables you to evaluate loans with different lengths -- such 15, 20 and 30 year mortgages -- to understand how the monthly payment and total interest expense changes. The longer the loan term, the lower the monthly payment but higher the interest expense over the life of the mortgage.
You can also use the calculator to evaluate different combinations of interest rates and closing costs. Mortgage proposals with lower rates usually charge higher closing costs and vice versa. For example you can understand how a mortgage with a low rate and high closing costs compares to a loan with a higher rate and lower costs.
Our Mortgage Comparison Calculator shows you the loan with the lowest monthly payment, lowest combination of interest rate and closing costs and lowest total interest expense over the life of the loan. These outputs enable you to choose the mortgage that best meets your financial objectives.
Borrowers should shop for a mortgage business just like they would any other big purchase. FREEandCLEAR recommends that borrowers compare proposals from at least four lenders before selecting a mortgage. There are different types of lenders -- banks, mortgage banks, mortgage brokers and credit unions -- and borrowers benefit by contacting multiple types of lenders. For example, a mortgage broker compares multiple lenders on behalf of borrowers while a big bank may offer competitive mortgage rates, especially for existing customers. Shopping for a mortgage takes extra time but can save borrowers thousands of dollars in closing costs and interest expense over the life of their mortgage. Our Mortgage Comparison Calculator makes it easier to shop lenders by enabling you to compare the key terms for multiple proposals.
The key items that borrowers should compare when shopping for a mortgage are interest rate and closing costs. Your mortgage rate is the rate of interest you pay to the lender for borrowing money while closing costs are the fees and expenses borrowers are required to pay to the lender and third party to process and close your mortgage. In some cases there is a trade-off between mortgage rate and closing costs. For example, a lender may quote a lower rate but higher closing costs as compared to another lender. Use our calculator to compare loans with different interest rates and closing costs.
When you are shopping for a mortgage make sure that lenders provide you with a Loan Estimate and Lender Fees Worksheet. Lenders are legally required to provide a Loan Estimate that outlines key mortgage terms such as interest rate and closing costs within three days of submitting a loan application. The Lender Fees Worksheet provides more detailed information on mortgage costs and fees. Lenders should provide both the Loan Estimate and Lender Fees Worksheet to borrowers free of charge. Borrowers can use the information provided on these two documents to more easily compare mortgage proposals from different lenders. Input the information provided by the lenders into our calculator to find the loan and lender that best meet your financial objectives.
Mortgage shopping is also about comparing different types and lengths of mortgages. For example, borrowers should compare a fixed rate mortgage to an adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) or a 30 year loan to a 15 year loan. When comparing different types and lengths of mortgages borrowers should consider if their interest rate and monthly payment can change over the course of their loan, like it can with an ARM. Additionally borrower should compare both the monthly payment as well as total interest expense over the life of the mortgage. For example, a 15 year mortgage has a higher monthly payment than a 30 year mortgage but can save borrowers tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars in interest expense of the term of the loan.
When you compare mortgage quotes from different lenders make sure that the interest rate lock period is the same for all proposals. The rate lock period is the amount of time your loan terms are good for. As long as you close your loan within that period of times, your mortgage rate and closing costs should not change, even if interest rates increase while your loan is processed. The length of the rate lock period impacts your mortgage rate and potentially your closing costs, with the longer the lock period, the higher your rate. Mortgages with different rate lock periods -- for example if one lender uses 15 days and another lender uses 45 days -- could have very different loan terms so make sure that the quotes you compare use the same lock period length.
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Kritt, Erica. “Mortgage Moves: How much can you afford?” CFPB. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, March 21 2016. Web.