South Carolina Mortgage Rates for December 2020

South Carolina Mortgage Rates for December 2020

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In South Carolina, the current average rate for a 30-year mortgage is 3.63%. 15-year home loan rates average at 3.05%, while 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) rates average 2.81% in the first five years.

Loan typeAverage rateWeekly change3-month change
30-year fixed3.63%–0.17%–0.39%
15-year fixed3.05%–0.09%–0.44%
5/1 ARM2.81%–0.41%–0.90%
Rates for a $200,000 loan with 20% down payment

Almost every homebuyer understands that the interest rate and APR on a mortgage represent how much it will cost you over time. But while it's tempting to treat mortgage rates like price tags, they tend to move up or down pretty frequently due to economic patterns. To help you know what to expect in South Carolina, we monitor the average interest rate for the most popular mortgage types and lenders from week to week.

Best Mortgage Rates in South Carolina

South Carolina's lowest 30-year mortgage rate is estimated at 3.25%. The best estimate for a 15-year fixed-rate home loan is now 2.75%. Finally, the lowest initial rate estimated for a 5/1 ARM is 2.75%. These rates assume the borrower is purchasing a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment.

Many mortgage shoppers end up surprised when the rate figures that appear on their quotes are higher than what banks and other lenders advertise at the time. This happens because every quote is personalized according to each borrower's credit profile, existing debt, and income numbers. On top of these personal data points, lenders also base their offers on the state of interest rates in the broader financial market.

With all these factors coming into play, it's not the easiest thing to understand the relative value of a home loan offer. The best response to this problem is twofold: get a sense of how rates are trending and then obtain quotes from multiple sources. By using both of these methods, you'll make sure that you're getting quotes at the right time as well as with the right lender.

Current Mortgage Rate Forecast for South Carolina

Since the start of 2019, home loan interest rates in the U.S. have fallen in a reversal of previous increases. The reasons for this unexpected reversal lie in the Federal Open Market Committee's (FOMC) decision to pull back on its original plans to increase the effective federal funds rate several times throughout the coming year. The FOMC's policy of patient observation has led banks and lenders to hold or lower their own rates.

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

While the relationship between mortgage rates and the FOMC-controlled federal funds rate isn't perfect, the chart above suggests that they move in the same direction over the long term. This makes sense given that the effective federal funds rate is the rate that commercial banks pay to borrow money, a cost that they pass on in their consumer loan products.

In South Carolina, a homebuyer may find the next few months a good time to secure a relatively low mortgage rate. However, we don't generally recommend that you try to time your home purchase just to lock in a favorable APR. Mortgage rates will continue to be very low from a historical perspective, and there are plenty of other financial considerations you should focus on in deciding when to buy a house.

Rates at South Carolina's Most Popular Mortgage Lenders

Another useful piece of information when it comes to mortgage rates is the current state of loan pricing at the largest local banks. Online mortgage shopping may be increasingly popular, but many borrowers still find it helpful to know what their local options are. We gathered rate estimates for a typical 30-year mortgage from South Carolina's biggest banks to see how they compared.

Column graph comparing 30-year mortgage rates at major South Carolina banks

A quick overview of estimates from the state's top five banks showed that mortgage rates can vary by as much as a full percentage point depending on which lenders you compare. While this is by no means a permanent or guaranteed difference in every applicant's quote, the level of variation does imply that it's worth looking at many different lenders in when you search for a mortgage offer in South Carolina.

Comparing Home Loan Rates by City

Given that the location of a property has a significant effect on its value, it wouldn't be strange to expect mortgage rates to show the same kind of geographic variation. However, our examination of average mortgage rates across South Carolina's major cities showed that the cost of financing is similar wherever you go.

AreaAverage mortgage rateMedian home value
Greenville-Anderson4.52%$173,377
Columbia4.48%$160,333
Charleston-North Charleston4.49%$242,456
Myrtle Beach-Conway-North Myrtle Beach4.56%$197,953
Average rate is for a 30-year mortgage with a 20% down payment.

As the table shows, the average rate for a typical 30-year home loan in South Carolina doesn't move by much from city to city. The main reason that homeowners in each place pay different amounts each month is because of differences in the price of a typical property, not because of changes in rate. The stability of mortgage rates makes sense given that home financing is increasingly becoming a nationwide marketplace.

Since location doesn't affect mortgage rate, borrowers whose main goal is to reduce their home loan payments shouldn't be too concerned with finding a local mortgage lender. While there are several benefits to working with a company that's more familiar with the neighborhood, those benefits won't necessarily include a more affordable loan rate.

Evaluating Your Mortgage Options: An Example in Myrtle Beach

Besides canvassing lenders for the best rate, you can also lower your interest rate by selecting a different type of loan. While most homeowners go with the usual 30-year mortgage, those who are interested in fine-tuning their financing have several alternatives. We can use an example to illustrate how the most popular of these alternative mortgages will change your payments.

Consider a home purchase in Myrtle Beach at a typical price of $200,000 and a 20% down payment. A 30-year home loan for this purchase will cost at least $731 at today's average rate. After thirty years, the homeowner will have paid $102,848 in interest on this mortgage. However, few buyers end up staying in one place for so long. That's where the concept of an adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) can become relevant.

ARMs offer a lower fixed rate for the first few years of the loan, after which interest is calculated on an adjustable rate. This is useful if you plan on selling your home long before the end of the mortgage. Currently in South Carolina, the average initial rate for a 5/1 ARM is 2.81% for the first five years of borrowing. This leads to a minimum monthly cost of $659 in our example, which can grow or shrink when the rate becomes adjustable.

If you're settling down for the long term, you might take things in the other direction with a 15-year fixed-rate mortgage. This loan squeezes your repayment into half as many years as usual, resulting in bigger individual monthly payments. However, the advantage is that 15-year loans carry consistently lower rates and halves the length of time that your loan balance has to accrue costly interest. In our example, a 15-year loan at current average rates will cost $1,109 per month and $39,581 in total interest.

In South Carolina, the current average rate for a 30-year mortgage is 3.63%. 15-year home loan rates average at 3.05%, while 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) rates average 2.81% in the first five years.

Loan typeAverage rateWeekly change3-month change
30-year fixed3.63%–0.17%–0.39%
15-year fixed3.05%–0.09%–0.44%
5/1 ARM2.81%–0.41%–0.90%
Rates for a $200,000 loan with 20% down payment

Almost every homebuyer understands that the interest rate and APR on a mortgage represent how much it will cost you over time. But while it's tempting to treat mortgage rates like price tags, they tend to move up or down pretty frequently due to economic patterns. To help you know what to expect in South Carolina, we monitor the average interest rate for the most popular mortgage types and lenders from week to week.

South Carolina's lowest 30-year mortgage rate is estimated at 3.25%. The best estimate for a 15-year fixed-rate home loan is now 2.75%. Finally, the lowest initial rate estimated for a 5/1 ARM is 2.75%. These rates assume the borrower is purchasing a home for $200,000 with a 20% down payment.

Many mortgage shoppers end up surprised when the rate figures that appear on their quotes are higher than what banks and other lenders advertise at the time. This happens because every quote is personalized according to each borrower's credit profile, existing debt, and income numbers. On top of these personal data points, lenders also base their offers on the state of interest rates in the broader financial market.

With all these factors coming into play, it's not the easiest thing to understand the relative value of a home loan offer. The best response to this problem is twofold: get a sense of how rates are trending and then obtain quotes from multiple sources. By using both of these methods, you'll make sure that you're getting quotes at the right time as well as with the right lender.

Since the start of 2019, home loan interest rates in the U.S. have fallen in a reversal of previous increases. The reasons for this unexpected reversal lie in the Federal Open Market Committee's (FOMC) decision to pull back on its original plans to increase the effective federal funds rate several times throughout the coming year. The FOMC's policy of patient observation has led banks and lenders to hold or lower their own rates.

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

While the relationship between mortgage rates and the FOMC-controlled federal funds rate isn't perfect, the chart above suggests that they move in the same direction over the long term. This makes sense given that the effective federal funds rate is the rate that commercial banks pay to borrow money, a cost that they pass on in their consumer loan products.

In South Carolina, a homebuyer may find the next few months a good time to secure a relatively low mortgage rate. However, we don't generally recommend that you try to time your home purchase just to lock in a favorable APR. Mortgage rates will continue to be very low from a historical perspective, and there are plenty of other financial considerations you should focus on in deciding when to buy a house.

Another useful piece of information when it comes to mortgage rates is the current state of loan pricing at the largest local banks. Online mortgage shopping may be increasingly popular, but many borrowers still find it helpful to know what their local options are. We gathered rate estimates for a typical 30-year mortgage from South Carolina's biggest banks to see how they compared.

Column graph comparing 30-year mortgage rates at major South Carolina banks

A quick overview of estimates from the state's top five banks showed that mortgage rates can vary by as much as a full percentage point depending on which lenders you compare. While this is by no means a permanent or guaranteed difference in every applicant's quote, the level of variation does imply that it's worth looking at many different lenders in when you search for a mortgage offer in South Carolina.

Given that the location of a property has a significant effect on its value, it wouldn't be strange to expect mortgage rates to show the same kind of geographic variation. However, our examination of average mortgage rates across South Carolina's major cities showed that the cost of financing is similar wherever you go.

AreaAverage mortgage rateMedian home value
Greenville-Anderson4.52%$173,377
Columbia4.48%$160,333
Charleston-North Charleston4.49%$242,456
Myrtle Beach-Conway-North Myrtle Beach4.56%$197,953
Average rate is for a 30-year mortgage with a 20% down payment.

As the table shows, the average rate for a typical 30-year home loan in South Carolina doesn't move by much from city to city. The main reason that homeowners in each place pay different amounts each month is because of differences in the price of a typical property, not because of changes in rate. The stability of mortgage rates makes sense given that home financing is increasingly becoming a nationwide marketplace.

Since location doesn't affect mortgage rate, borrowers whose main goal is to reduce their home loan payments shouldn't be too concerned with finding a local mortgage lender. While there are several benefits to working with a company that's more familiar with the neighborhood, those benefits won't necessarily include a more affordable loan rate.

Chris Moon

Chris is a Product Manager for ValuePenguin with years of experience in addressing critical questions about mortgages and homeowners insurance. He spends his time evaluating insurance providers and policy features to understand where consumers might find the most cost-effective coverage. Chris has contributed insights to the New York Times and many other publications.

Editorial Note: The content of this article is based on the author’s opinions and recommendations alone. It has not been previewed, commissioned or otherwise endorsed by any of our network partners.

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Get Multiple Mortgage Offers at Once
LendingTree can help you find and compare mortgage rates, all without affecting your credit.
See Offers

on LendingTree's secure website. NMLS #1136: terms and conditions apply