Unless you don’t have a mortgage payment, there is usually that time every month when you groan a little when whipping out your checkbook. However, have you ever thought about how the mortgage payment you are paying each month compares to mortgage payments in other areas?
Your mortgage payment is comprised of your loan repayment and interest and perhaps monies paid into an escrow account for such things as your property taxes and homeowners insurance. For the purposes of this article, we are only looking at principal and interest.
The National Association of REALTORS® put together an interesting tool that evaluates the median home value (which includes all homes, not just the sales) per county throughout the country and determines the applicable mortgage payment assuming interest rates of 3.5, 4.2 and 5.0% as well as a 10% down payment. The below table includes a number of counties across the country, the median home value as of the 4th quarter of 2016, and the applicable mortgage payment at 4.2% (which is closest to our current interest rate for a 30 year fixed rate mortgage):
You can try the tool yourself: https://www.nar.realtor/topics/county-median-home-prices-and-monthly-mortgage-payment
On that page, you can also see how the monthly mortgage payment changes as interest rates rise to 5%. In the counties with the lower median home values, the impact isn’t large (because the loan amount is not as large), but in the counties with the high median home value, there is a strong difference. For example, in Austin County where the median home value is $195,029, a change from 4.2% to 5.0% only increases the monthly payment by $84. However, in San Francisco County, where the median home value is $1,048,166, that 0.8% change results in a payment $451 higher.
If you would like to learn more about mortgage payments, home values, and changes in interest rates and how those might affect you, please reach out! (555) 555-5555 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.