Wells Fargo is a major commercial lender for refinancing, adjustable rate loans, mortgage lending, and loans through Veteran's Affairs and the Federal Housing Authority. Whether you're a new homeowner, looking to refinance, or an active-duty service member, Wells Fargo offers a variety of lending products that they can tailor to you and your family's household needs. Wells Fargo mortgage rates are market-competitive, and they come with the backing of a lender with a proven and long-standing customer service record.
While you are shopping around for the right loan, familiarize yourself with how the secondary mortgage securities market affects interest rates. If managed correctly, a loan can be a pathway to investing in a better future or greater financial stability, so it's important to know a thing or two about the prevailing interest rates you can expect to encounter in the financial products on offer. The housing market has been a source of financial turmoil in the last ten years, so the more you know, the better you can position yourself to stay ahead of your loan and make payments on time.
Read on to learn more about Wells Fargo mortgage rates, how these rates are determined, and what kind of products and programs Wells Fargo has to offer you and your family.
How Mortgage Rates Are Determined
Wells Fargo mortgage rates change from year to year, as is typical for the mortgage market, but these rate changes are far from arbitrary. Your lender determines the interest rate on your mortgage, or housing loan, in collaboration with a third-party investor. This third party purchases the loan from your bank or lender, and then both parties work together to arrive at an interest rate that balances the needs of both you, the homebuyer, and the investor.
To do this, the investor - a large-scale financial institution like Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac - approaches your lender with information about the prevailing secondary mortgage security market, where investors bundle mortgages together into mortgage-backed securities and then sell shares of these bundles on the market. Selling these shares enables investors to get a return on their purchase, and overall to keep the mortgage investment market moving.
While the investor in the secondary market is looking to make the investment with the highest return, and thus will favor a higher interest rate, you, the homebuyer, are shopping around for the lowest interest rate you can find. The tension between these two market forces has a much more substantial influence upon the prevailing interest rate than the lender itself, so Wells Fargo mortgage rates in particular are determined by the larger financial market.
The Global Market
Overall, the size of the secondary mortgage market amounts to trillions of dollars, so it is ultimately global market forces that determine mortgage rates of interest and return. Speaking in broad terms, the direction of mortgage rate trends corresponds to the overall health of the economy: when the unemployment rate is rising, or when US and/or global financial markets suffer losses, mortgage rates tend to fall in response. Conversely, when financial markets are seeing gains, the job market improves, or inflation is predicted to pick up speed, mortgage rates usually rise in response.
Lastly, your credit score acts as a guide for your lender in determining what they kind of loan structure they offer, your down payment and monthly payments, and the size of the loan principal itself. Wells Fargo mortgage rates not only change over time, but they are established by a variety of factors that go beyond the scope of any single lending institution's ability to determine.
Working the Market
It falls to the individual consumer to have a little luck, follow market trends, and do your own research based on the type of home you're trying to purchase, the local housing market, and your anticipated financial health in the near future. ARM/adjustable-rate mortgages tend to offer a better upfront interest rate than a fixed-rate mortgage, but it's important to be cautious when considering a loan structure with ballooning interest payments down the line.
Wells Fargo Mortgage Loan Programs
Wells Fargo has a couple of programs that can help new or prospective home buyers find the loan structure that works best for them. Whether you're trying to lower your down payment on a home or need to refinance an existing mortgage on your property, they can help you make the right choice.
Service members and veterans should also consider consulting a legal adviser or looking for home-buying programs that are specifically tailored to their needs, in addition to the programs offered here.
Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP)
Whether you're trying to refinance at a lower interest rate, lower your monthly payments, or shorten the term of your mortgage, Wells Fargo may be able to help you via the HARP program. HARP is a government program designed to help homeowners who have insufficient equity for a standard refinancing loan or who owe more than the value of their mortgage (a "reverse" or "underwater" mortgage).
To be eligible for assistance through HARP, you will need to be current on your mortgage payments, your mortgage must be backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, the mortgage must have originated before June 2009, and you cannot have already tried refinancing this property through the HARP program.
If you are a current Wells Fargo customer, it's that much easier to get started with HARP, as most of the paperwork has already been completed.
Active-duty service members should consult the Servicemembers Relief Act or applicable state laws to determine qualification for benefits under the HARP program. See the Wells Fargo mortgage rates listed below with the abbreviation "VA" for "Veterans' Affairs" to get an idea of what you could qualify for.
This program was created by Wells Fargo to help new homebuyers, especially those struggling with excessive down-payment requirements. It offers a 3% down-payment and low, fixed-rate interest, and allows you to sidestep area median income requirements. Additionally, the YourFirst Mortgage program allows you to use payment assistance and closing-cost funds to help with the closing process.
Keep in mind that with all these advantages, paying a lower down payment will require the purchase of mortgage insurance, meaning the overall cost of the loan goes up, along with your monthly payments. This program can help you get into the housing market for the first time, and/or lower entry costs to purchasing a home, but this assistance is balanced out a bit on the "back end" by slightly higher monthly payments.
Mortgage Loan Products
There are two main types of mortgage loans available through Wells Fargo:
Conforming and Government-Backed Loan Types
Non-Conforming and Jumbo Loan Types
Jumbo Versus Conforming Loans: What's the Difference?
The principal of a home loan, backed by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, or other federal institutions, may not exceed a set limit based on the price of a single-family home for the area. This principal limit will vary based on where you are attempting to purchase a home in the US, but for most US counties, the 2018 limit is $453,100.
A loan that "conforms" to this limit is referred to as conforming, while a "jumbo" loan exceeds that amount, and thus is not backed by a federal institution like Fannie Mae. Jumbo or "nonconforming" loans provide a greater breadth of options for consumers, but they also tend to have higher monthly payments, higher closing costs, and they pose a more substantial financial risk.
What Are Wells Fargo Mortgage Rates Today?
Rates for Wells Fargo mortgages as of November 15th, 2018 are as follows:
Wells Fargo Mortgage Rates
Conforming/Govt-Backed - listed in order of Interest Rate, APR, Refinancing Interest Rate, Refinancing APR
Nonconforming/Jumbo - listed in order of Interest Rate, APR, Refinancing Interest Rate, Refinancing APR
If you're in the market for a new home, or trying to refinance an existing property, Wells Fargo is an experienced and long-standing financial institution, with a strong reputation as a mortgage lender. As of 2017, Wells Fargo financed one in eight home loans in the United States! Call or e-mail your local Wells Fargo financing department for more information on the above products, get a quote for your prospective monthly payments, and get started.
Even if you don't have a huge nest egg set aside for a down payment, or you're concerned about your monthly payments, your local Wells Fargo location can provide you with options to help you navigate the mortgage market.