A rate "lock" or "commitment" is a lender's promise to set a specific interest rate and a specific number of points for you for a specified period of time during your application process. This protects you from going through your entire application process and finding out at the end that the interest rate has gotten higher.
Rate lock periods can be various lengths of time, between fifteen to sixty days, with the longer ones generally costing more. You can get a longer period for your lock, but in making this choice, will probably have a higher rate than you would have with a shorter span of time
In addition to going with a shorter lock period, there are several ways you can attain the best rate. A larger down payment will result in a reduced interest rate, since you will be starting out with more equity. You may choose to pay points to reduce your rate for the loan term, meaning you pay more up front. To many people, this is a good option..
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