What is an ‘Adjustable-Rate Mortgage (ARM),’ and how is it used?

mortgage specialists international

An adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) refers to a mortgage with variable interest rates, which change regularly after an initial period. It fluctuates with the market interest rates, offering either a financial gain or loss to the borrowers. This is in direct contrast with the fixed-rate mortgage rules that impose a fixed interest rate for the entire repayment period.

Each ARM loan has an introductory period from 3 to 10 years where the interest rate stays lower than that of any fixed-rate mortgage. It’s possible to save a lump sum of money if you can settle the loan within that primary window.

After the initial fixed-rate period, an ARM’s interest rate will depend on the current market rates, meaning the rates can rise or fall over the mortgage’s remaining course. The lender will revise the rate at regular intervals, possibly once a year, and adjust it to the current market rate until the end of the term. To avoid paying extra money in rising interest, you can either sell the house or refinance the loan.

America Mortgages offers standard 5 and 7-year adjustable-rate mortgages (ARM) that you can qualify easily without going through much paperwork. You can also refinance if your home’s market price is at least $150,000 or pull out cash of the home equity.

An ARM might be the right choice if you can pay the loan off during the initial cap or don’t plan to live in the same house for your entire life. Ask the lender about the loan’s margin, the factors related to rate changes, and the intervals of rate changes to see if you can afford the calculated monthly installments.