a mortgage loan with an interest rate that is subject to change and is not fixed at the same level for the life of the loan. These types of loans usually start off with a lower interest rate but can subject the homeowner to payment uncertainty when the rate adjusts.
A mortgage that does not have a fixed interest rate. The rate changes during the life of the loan based on movements in an index rate, such as the rate for Treasury securities or the Cost of Funds Index. ARMs usually offer a lower initial interest rate than fixed-rate loans. The interest rate fluctuates over the life of the loan based on market conditions, but the loan agreement generally sets maximum and minimum rates. When interest rates increase, generally your loan payments increase; and when interest rates decrease, your monthly payments may decrease.
- Browse Related Terms: Adjustable-Rate Mortgage (ARM), amortization, balloon mortgage, Convertible ARM, Debarment, Fixed-Rate Mortgage (FRM), Interest-only mortgage, Lock-In, Lock-in agreement, Mortgage life insurance, Negative amortization, Payment Cap, Right of rescission, Self-Amortizing Loans, Swap, term, Weighted Average Life (WAL)
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