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Ohio Mortgage Rates for February 2019

In Ohio, the current average for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is 4.67%. The 15-year fixed-rate averages at 4.21%, while the 5/1 adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) average is 4.28%.

Loan typeAverage rateWeekly change3-month change
30-year fixed4.67%–0.02%–0.26%
15-year fixed4.21%–0.02%–0.24%
5/1 ARM4.28%–0.01%–0.09%
Rates for a $200,000 loan with 20% down payment
Loan typeAverage rateWeekly change
30-year fixed4.67%–0.02%
15-year fixed4.21%–0.02%
5/1 ARM4.28%–0.01%
Rates for a $200,000 loan with 20% down payment

Interest rates are in constant motion thanks to changing economic conditions, and mortgages are no exception. Whether you want to buy a new home or refinance your existing home loan, understanding where mortgage rates are and where they're headed can save thousands of dollars over decades of repayment. Our analysis of rates in the Buckeye State includes dozens of lenders and several loan types.

How Much Do Ohio Mortgage Rates Vary?

Currently in Ohio, 30-year mortgage rates vary by a spread of 350 basis points. Published rates fall between 3.88% and 7.38%. We can plug these figures into an example of a $200,000 loan to figure out how they impact monthly payments.

If you make a 20% down payment, the 30-year interest on your initial loan of $160,000 would cost you $111,022 to $238,026 depending on the rate you find. With a gap of $127,004 between the best and worst rates offered in Ohio, it's important to make sure your own quotes compare well to these numbers.

Comparing Home Loan Rates by Bank

Once we recognize that there's a significant range of possible mortgage rates in Ohio, we can compare rates at the state's largest lenders to identify where borrowers might find the best opportunities for an affordable home loan.

Column graph comparing 30-year mortgage rates at major Ohio banks

Like most states, Ohio doesn't have much diversity among the larger banks in terms of mortgage rates. Despite this, we did see some lower numbers posted by smaller local banks, who may be more flexible and responsive to local conditions when they make their offers. But overall, we didn't find much evidence that a borrower would see major savings simply by picking one lender over another.

In the next few months, Ohioans will likely see mortgage rates remain the same or decline slightly. This has to do with the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) announcing a pause in its recent policy of gradual rate hikes, which caused interest rates to rise gradually during 2018.

Line graph of average U.S. 30-year mortgage rates vs. effective federal funds rate since 2014

The connection between FOMC activity and mortgage rates in Ohio isn't a direct one, but history shows that changes in the federal funds rate inevitably affect all interest rates in the country. A higher federal funds rate means banks must pay more to borrow money themselves, a cost which many institutions pass on to their customers.

That said, it's not the best idea to wait for the "perfect" rate if other factors make a home purchase logical and necessary. Interest rate trends can take a very long time to settle or reverse direction, which can make timing the market a self-defeating exercise for families who are otherwise ready to buy. Moreover, rates remain at historic lows even after the recent increases, so most mortgages are still affordable relative to past conditions.

Comparing Home Loan Rates in Ohio Cities

Besides examining Ohio's individual mortgage lenders, we also took a look at how rates change based on your location within the state. We looked over averages and median home values in a few of Ohio's largest metro areas to investigate whether some borrowers face higher mortgage costs than others.

MSAAverage mortgage rateMedian home valueEstimated monthly cost
Cleveland-Elyria4.89%$154,698$644
Cincinnati4.85%$174,839$724
Columbus4.91%$183,510$768
Monthly cost shows principal and interest for a 30-year mortgage with a 20% down payment.

These rates and prices may be significantly different from what you encounter, especially if your credit history is particularly strong or if the property price is unusual for the area. Overall, there isn't much of a relationship between mortgage rate and geography in Ohio. Wherever you choose to borrow, you'll find that your personal financial details have a much larger impact on your final rate.

Evaluating Mortgage Options: An Example in Cincinnati

The kind of mortgage you choose can also affect your finances more than interest rate. Consider the example of a homebuyer in Cincinnati, one of Ohio's largest cities. If the median value of a home in Cincinnati is roughly $175,000, we can apply different mortgage conditions to that value and compare the costs of each.

The most popular option among home loan borrowers is the 30-year fixed-rate loan, which averages at 4.85% in Cincinnati. Assuming a down payment of 20% leads to monthly pre-tax costs of $732 and lifetime total of over $123,500 in interest. Starting from this standard loan situation, we can look at how other popular mortgage types help you tweak such costs to your individual needs.

One common scenario faced by young families is moving homes well before the end of their mortgage. For homeowners who want to minimize the early costs of a mortgage, a 5/1 ARM offers lower rates than a 30-year loan at the cost of potentially higher rates after the first five years. In the Cincinnati example, Ohio's current average rate of 4.28% lowers monthly costs by $43 and saves almost $3,000 on the first five years of interest.

If you're in a hurry to pay off your mortgage debt, compressing your repayment into a 15-year loan can save even more money on interest. Your monthly payments will be significantly higher, but each payment speeds up the process of reducing your principal balance. In our example, a 15-year loan at Ohio's average rate of 4.21% bumps the monthly payment up by $329 but reduces your final interest by $69,808—a 58% reduction.

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