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LendingTree: Borrowers with stronger credit scores saved big in February

On average, those with good credit saved about $17,600 over the life of their loan

In February, the best mortgage offers for borrowers with the “best profiles” had an average APR of 4.09% for conforming 30-year, fixed-rate purchase loans, according to LendingTree’s latest Mortgage Offers Report.

LendingTree considers best credit profiles to be those within the 95th percentile of borrowers who received the best mortgage offers through its marketplace.

According to the company’s report, February’s rate moderately fell from January’s 4.19%.

Notably, the APR on refinance loan offers also retreated, falling to 4.04% from 4.14% in January.

“For the average borrower, the purchase APR for conforming 30-year, fixed-rate purchase loans offered on LendingTree’s platform was 4.87% in February, down 11 basis points from January,” the report states. “The loan note rate of 4.75% was also down 11 basis points from January.”

Interestingly, LendingTree highlights borrowers with stronger credit scores received even more savings than their counterparts.

In fact, borrowers with excellent credit scores received an average APR of 4.68%, versus 5.02% for consumers with scores of 680 to 719.

However, the APR spread of 34 basis points between these score ranges fell from 37 in January, according to LendingTree’s analysis.

Furthermore, for the average borrower, the APR for conforming 30-year, fixed-rate refinance loans plummeted 13 basis points to 4.81%.

So overall, for the average purchase loan amount of $229,615, the spread represents a little over $17,000 in additional costs for borrowers with lower credit scores.

“At 4.62% and 4.95%, respectively, the spread between credit score brackets was 33 basis points,” LendingTree writes. “That amounts to about $17,600 in extra costs over the life of the loan for borrowers with lower credit scores, given an average refinance loan of $245,323."

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