What is a "rate lock period"?
Locking in your Interest Rate
When you are promised a "rate lock" from a lender, it means that you are guaranteed to keep a particular interest rate over a determined period while you work on the application process. This protects you from getting through your entire application process and finding out at the end that your interest rate has risen higher.
Rate lock periods can vary in length, anywhere from 15 to 60 days, with the longer spans generally costing more. You can get a longer period for your lock, but in choosing this option, will most likely have a higher rate than you would with a shorter span of time
Other Interest Saving Strategies
There are more ways to get a good rate, in addition to going with a shorter rate lock period. The bigger down payment you can pay, the lower the rate will be, since you will have more equity from the start. You may opt to pay points to bring down your interest rate over the loan term, meaning you pay more initially. For many people, this makes sense and is a good deal..