Buy or refi for less with a 3.0%, 15-year home loan

Piggy bank with a row of coins heading to a house

National Mortgage Alliance has one of March's best nationally available deals on a 15-year, fixed-rate home loan.

It's charging 3.0% with no points and $1,600 in fees for a conventaional loan.

That's exactly what this lender was charging last spring, even though the average cost of a 15-year home loan is about a half-point higher than it was in March 2013.

The current deal from National Mortgage Alliance is also well below the current national average of 3.48% for 15-year loans.

We think you'll have a tough time finding a better loan. But there's no harm in trying. Click here to compare this deal with the best mortgage rates from hundreds of local and national lenders in our extensive database.

These shorter-term loans are particularly popular with borrowers out to refinance their homes and save tens of thousands of dollars in interest by paying off their loans more quickly.

See how much interest you'd save by paying off your home loan early using our 15-year vs. 30-year mortgage comparison calculator.

The major drawback to shorter loans is that the monthly payments are higher. For this mortgage, the principal and interest payment would be $691 a month for every $100,000.

You can use our mortgage calculator to determine the monthly payments for the amount you want to borrow with this or any home loan.

It will also provide a month-by-month amortization schedule that shows how much you've reduced your debt and how much you still owe if you want to pay off the loan.

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National Mortgage Alliance (www.nationalmortgagealliance.com) is an online lender and a division of the Georgia Banking Co., which has branches in Atlanta and Griffin, Ga.

Georgia Banking Co. is licensed to write loans in all 50 states and the District of Columbia. National Mortgage Alliance is licensed in the 48 continental states and the District of Columbia.

To qualify for this loan you must:

Although mortgage rates have defied all predictions and drifted lower since January, most experts still expect them to rise later in the year.

That's because the Federal Reserve is ending its campaign to drive long-term interest rates — including mortgage rates —  to record lows.

The nation's bank-for-banks began buying $85 billion worth of debt a month in September 2012, a fairly even split between Treasury bills and bonds backed by thousands of home loans.

By flooding the mortgage market with money, it pushed the cost of home loans to record lows in an attempt to boost real estate sales and property values battered by the recession.

In a process the Fed refers to as tapering, it reduced those purchases to $75 billion in January, $65 billion in February and March.

When the bank's rate-setting committee met this week, it voted to lower the purchases to $55 billion in April.

At that rate, it appears the Fed's bond-buying campaign will wrap-up sometime this fall — unless we're confronted with some new economic catastrophe.

Bottom line: We're probably enjoying the lowest rates of the year right now.

Keep that in mind as you make your home-buying or refinancing plans.

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