10 biggest mortgage mistakes

Not getting a fixed-rate loan

Fixed-rate loans are no longer priced at record lows, so you might be tempted to grab an adjustable-rate mortgage.

But unless you're planning to move within five to seven years, you'll be better off sticking with a fixed-rate loan.

Mortgages remain historically cheap, so if you take out a fixed-rate loan now, you may never have to worry about refinancing. An ARM might offer you a lower payment now, but it will eventually reset, most likely at a higher rate.

"There is a lot of risk if rates rise and you cannot get out of the ARM at the right time," says Phillip Christenson, a chartered financial analyst and owner of Phillip James Financial, a financial planning and investment management company in Plymouth, Minnesota.

You might not be able to refinance or afford the new payment once rates rise. Or the housing market could make it difficult to sell.

Our extensive database of current mortgage rates is a good place to start your search for a fixed-rate loan. It allows you to quickly and easily compare the lowest available rates and fees from dozens of lenders.