California Mortgage Rates

Searching for competitive mortgage rates in California? At Alpine Mortgage, we're committed to finding you the best rates available. Below are today's purchase and refinance mortgage rates on our conventional, FHA and VA loan programs for homes in California. For rates on our other loan programs such as investment property loan rates, renovation loan rates, reverse mortgage rates or Non QM loan rates, please reach out to us for a personalized quote. At Alpine Mortgage our mission is clear: to provide you with the lowest mortgage rates in CA tailored specifically to your needs and to offer valuable California mortgage resources to help navigate the complexities of the mortgage process.

Current Mortgage and Refinance Rates in California

Loan ProgramRateAPRFeesAction

The conventional rates shown are based on a loan amount of $525,000 and a down payment of at least 25%. The FHA rates shown are based on a loan amount of $675,500 and a down payment of at least 3.5%. The VA rates shown are based on a loan amount of $700,000 and no down payment. CA Mortgage rates are subject to change at any time and are subject to mortgage approval with full documentation of income. All rates shown are for a 30 day rate lock with one discount point on the purchase or rate and term refinance of a single family primary residence with a 740 or higher FICO score.

California Best Rate Guarantee

Do you want the best deal on your mortgage, but are tired of trying to compare the fine print to determine the difference between the quotes prepared by various lenders? At Alpine Mortgage we are committed to helping you secure the best mortgage rate for your home financing needs which is why we offer our Best Rate Guarantee. We search out the best rate and fees based on your goals and find the best pricing available through our large variety of loan programs. We guarantee that we will provide you with the best price in the market for your mortgage.

You are welcome to shop all other local lenders for a better deal. If you can find one, provide us with that lender's signed and dated lock-in agreement and Loan Estimate on the day the interest rate is locked in and we will beat that lender's interest rate and/or lender fees. You are "guaranteed" the best price, no matter what. At Alpine Mortgage, your satisfaction is our priority. With our Best Rate Guarantee, you can shop for your mortgage with confidence, knowing that you are getting the best possible interest rate for your mortgage.

Terms and conditions: Our Best Rate Guarantee applies to our fixed rate conventional, FHA and VA loan programs only and does not apply to any other loan programs. Our Best Rate Guarantee is subject to change or termination at any time without prior notice.

Image of CA Mortgage Rates

Mortgage Programs

California Conventional Loans. Among the most popular loan options, conventional loans have specific requirements such as a minimum credit score of 620 and a minimum down payment of 3%. Interest rates on these loans can differ greatly based on the credit score and down payment. If you are putting less than 20% down, you will also have to pay private mortgage insurance (PMI) which can be paid either upfront at closing or monthly until your equity in the property reaches at least 20%. These loans can be utilized to purchase a primary residence, vacation property or an investment property.

California FHA Loans. If your credit history makes it difficult to secure a conventional loan, a FHA loan may be a good option. A FHA loan is a loan that is insured against default by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). The minimum down payment on a FHA loan is 3.5% with a minimum credit score of at least 580. For borrowers with a credit score as low as 500, it is still possible to get a FHA loan with a larger down payment of at least 10%. Regardless of the amount of your down payment, FHA loans require the payment of mortgage insurance premiums (MIP). FHA loans are available only on a primary residence and the maximum loan amount varies by county. You can view the current CA FHA Loan Limits for all counties in California. 

California VA Loans. Backed by the Department of Veteran Affairs, VA loans offer veterans and their families with home loans with no down payment required. VA loans do not have any mortgage insurance but may have a funding fee that is collected at closing. VA loans are only available on a primary residence.

California Non QM Loans. For borrowers that can't qualify for a conventional, FHA or VA loan because of credit issues or income documentation requirements, we offer several different Non QM loan products. Our Non QM provides flexibility in lending standards for individuals with unique financial circumstances or credit issues such as a recent bankruptcy or foreclosure. These loans can be used to finance a primary residence, vacation property or an investment property.

California Reverse Mortgage Loans. For homeowners that are 62 years or older, a reverse mortgage allows you to access the equity in your home by either receiving a lump sum, fixed monthly payments or a line of credit. Reverse mortgages are only available on a primary residence.

Loan TypeMin. Credit ScoreMin. Down PaymentOccupancy
Conventional6203.0%Primary, Secondary or Investment
FHA5803.5%Primary Residence
FHA Low Score50010%Primary Residence
VA620NonePrimary Residence
Non-QM50020%Primary, Secondary or Investment

30 Year Fixed and 15 Year Fixed Mortgage Rates in CA

30 year fixed and 15 year fixed mortgages are popular options in California. A 30 year fixed mortgage is the most popular choice. The biggest advantage of a 30 year term is lower monthly payments compared to shorter term loans, which can make homeownership more affordable, especially for first-time buyers or those with other significant expenses. Understanding the estimated monthly payment for a 30 year fixed mortgage can help homeowners manage their cash flow more effectively, providing a clearer picture of their financial obligations. This is particularly beneficial for budgeting and long-term financial planning, as it allows for a more predictable expense over the duration of the loan. 15 year fixed loans offer lower interest rates for borrowers that can afford the higher mortgage payment due to the shorter amortization period. We offer 30 year fixed and 15 year fixed loan options on our conventional, FHA, VA and Non QM loan programs.

Choosing between a 30 Year Fixed and a 15 Year Fixed
  • Financial Stability and Cash Flow. If you prefer lower monthly payments for better cash flow management, a 30 year mortgage might be the better choice. It allows more flexibility in budgeting and provides the opportunity to invest surplus funds in other ventures that may offer higher returns.
  • Total Cost and Interest. If you can afford higher monthly payments without undue financial strain, a 15-year mortgage will save you money in the long run due to lower interest rates and less total interest paid.
  • Equity Building. A 15-year mortgage helps build equity faster, which is beneficial if you plan to sell the home after a few years or leverage the equity for other financial needs.

How to Get the Best California Mortgage Rates

Securing the best mortgage rates in California can significantly impact your overall homeownership costs. With the state's high property prices, even a slight reduction in interest rates can save you thousands of dollars over the life of your loan. Here are some essential steps to help you get the best mortgage rates in California:

Strengthen Your Credit Score. Your credit score is one of the most critical factors in determining your mortgage rate. Lenders typically offer the best rates to borrowers with excellent credit scores (720-850). To improve your credit score, pay your bills on time, reduce your debt, and avoid opening new credit accounts before applying for a mortgage.

Shop Around. Mortgage rates can vary significantly between lenders. Compare rates and fees from multiple mortgage companies to find the best deal. A California mortgage broker can be a good resource as they can shop several lenders to find the best deals.

Consider a Shorter Term. While 30-year mortgages are the most popular, selecting for a shorter loan term, such as a 15-year mortgage, can help you secure a lower interest rate. Although your monthly payments will be higher, you'll pay less in interest and build equity faster.

Make a Larger Down Payment. A larger down payment can also help you secure a better mortgage rate. While you can buy a home with as little as 3.5% down, putting down at least 20% can help you avoid private mortgage insurance (PMI) and secure a better rate.

Lock in Your Rate. Mortgage rates can fluctuate daily. Once you find a favorable rate, consider locking it in to protect yourself from potential increases. A rate lock guarantees your interest rate for a specified period, typically 30 to 60 days. This protects you from potential rate increases while your loan is in process.

Understand the California Mortgage Market. California’s real estate market is highly competitive and diverse. With its bustling urban centers to serene coastal towns, Calofornia offers a variety of mortgage products. Staying informed about current trends and market conditions in California will give you a competitive edge.

Securing the best mortgage rate in California requires diligent research and preparation. By strengthening your financial profile, saving for a larger down payment, shopping around, and considering various loan options, you can secure the best mortgage rates in California. Additionally, staying informed about market trends can further enhance your chances of getting a favorable rate. Remember, even a small reduction in your mortgage rate can lead to significant savings over the life of your loan.

CA Mortgage Rates

California Real Estate & Mortgage Update

Market Conditions. The California real estate and mortgage market is expected to experience a rebound in 2024, influenced by a variety of economic factors and market dynamics. The California Association of Realtors (C.A.R.) forecasts a significant 22.9% increase in existing single-family home sales, reaching an estimated 327,100 units, up from 266,200 units in 2023. This increase follows a downturn in 2023, where sales dropped by 22.2% from 2022 levels. Median home prices in California are also projected to rise by 6.2%, reaching $860,300 in 2024, after a slight decline in 2023. This price increase is attributed to a persistent housing shortage and a competitive market environment​. Regionally, trends vary: the Los Angeles Metro Area saw a 9.0% year-over-year increase in median home prices as of March 2024, reaching $801,000. Similarly, the Central Coast experienced a 3.0% increase to $950,000, while the Far North region saw prices rise by 5.6% to $374,950​.

Mortgage Rate Trends. Following a period of historic lows, mortgage rates have shown some volatility over the past few months. This uptick is largely due to the Federal Reserve's efforts to curb inflation through rate hikes, which have subsequently influenced borrowing costs. Higher mortgage rates have cooled some of the frenzied buyer activity observed in previous years, leading to a more balanced market in several regions. The increased cost of borrowing is prompting potential homebuyers to re-evaluate their purchasing plans, with some opting to wait for a dip in rates. However, despite these challenges, demand in high-growth areas remains robust, supported by strong job markets and continued migration trends.

Mortgage Rate Outlook. Experts predict that mortgage rates may stabilize towards the latter half of 2024, depending on economic indicators and Federal Reserve policies. Potential homebuyers are advised to stay informed on rate trends and market conditions, and consider locking in rates where possible to mitigate the risk of future increases. For more information, see our Mortgage Rate Forecast for expert predictions on where rates are headed in 2024 and beyond. 

California Refinance Rates

Owning a home is a fundamental aspect of the American Dream, and many in California consider refinancing to better manage their financial situation. Keeping informed of California refinance rates is essential, as economic shifts significantly impact the housing market and can influence the timing and benefits of refinancing. Several factors, including the broader economy, government policies, and financial market dynamics, affect refinance rates in California.

Key influences on refinance rates include actions by the Federal Reserve, fluctuating inflation rates, and the state of the bond markets, all of which can cause interest rates for refinance loans to vary. This variability impacts how advantageous refinancing might be at different times. For instance, when the Federal Reserve announces changes to interest rate targets, lenders typically adjust their rates accordingly. Likewise, if inflation increases, lenders might raise rates to maintain their profit margins.

Strategies for CA Homeowners Considering Refinancing

For homeowners contemplating refinancing, aligning the decision with your financial goals is crucial. Here are some strategies for California homeowners to consider when evaluating refinance rates:

  • Assess your financial situation: Ensure that refinancing aligns with your current financial goals and circumstances.
  • Examine all costs: Look beyond the advertised interest rates and consider all associated fees to understand the total cost of refinancing.
  • Plan for the future: Consider how long you plan to stay in your home since this can influence the cost-effectiveness of refinancing.
  • Monitor economic indicators: Stay informed about economic trends that could indicate shifts in interest rates, helping you choose the best time to refinance.
  • Rate locks: Consider locking in a rate during periods of favorable rates to maximize potential savings.

Refinancing can help in many ways, like lowering monthly payments, changing loan terms, or getting equity from your property. Increasing California refinance rates and mortgage interest rates signal a shift for homeowners. If you're thinking about refinancing, consider how the higher rates balance with gaining from your home's equity. It's about careful thinking and clear calculations when looking at refinancing's value today.

Cash Out Refinance in California

California's high home values and competitive mortgage market make cash out refinances a popular option for homeowners.

  • Substantial Home Equity: With some of the highest home prices in the nation, many California homeowners have built up significant equity in their properties. This equity can be leveraged through a cash out refinance to access funds for various financial goals.
  • Competitive Lending Environment: California's mortgage market is highly competitive, with numerous lenders offering cash out refinance options. This competition can lead to favorable terms and interest rates for borrowers.
  • Potential Tax Benefits: California homeowners may be able to deduct the interest paid on their cash out refinance, providing a potential tax benefit. However, it's essential to consult with a tax professional to determine eligibility.
  • iverse Housing Market: California's housing market is diverse, with a mix of single-family homes, condominiums, and multi-unit properties. Experienced lenders can help navigate the cash out refinance process for these various property types.

When considering a cash out refinance in California, it's important to work with a refinance lender that can help guide you through the process and ensure that you're making the best decision for your financial future.

CA Mortgage Rates FAQs

Buying a house when interest rates are high isn't generally ideal due to higher monthly mortgage payments. However, if real estate prices are expected to continue rising, delaying a purchase could mean paying more in the long run. Consider the following:

  • Cost vs. Benefit: Calculate the long-term cost of buying now versus waiting for a potential drop in rates.
  • Renting vs. Buying: Calculate the costs of renting vs. buying. Sometimes renting might be more cost-effective in the short term when rates are high.
  • Long-Term Perspective: Real estate typically appreciates over time, so buying at a higher interest rate might still be a worthwhile investment if you plan to stay in the home long enough.

There are several government-backed home loan options available in CA, including FHA loans (which have lower down payment requirements), VA loans (available to veterans and active military), and USDA loans (for rural property buyers).

The process typically starts with getting preapproved before looking at properties. Once a property is selected, a formal mortgage application is submitted. The lender will then conduct an appraisal and then close the loan.

Buying a house when mortgage rates are high can be less cost-effective due to increased monthly payments and total interest costs. However, if home prices are rising, and you plan to stay in the house long-term, the investment could still be worthwhile. Consider your financial stability, compare renting versus buying costs, and think about potential home value appreciation. You could face higher home prices or miss out on your dream home if you are waiting for rates to go down.