When you are offered a "rate lock" from a lender, it means that you are guaranteed to keep a specific interest rate over a determined period for your application process. This keeps you from working through your entire application process and learning at the end that the interest rate has gone up.
While there are various lengths of rate lock periods (from 15 to 60 days), the extended ones are usually more expensive. You can get a longer period for your lock, but in choosing this option, will probably have a higher rate than you would have with a shorter rate lock span of time
In addition to going with the shorter lock period, there are other ways you can score the best rate. The larger the down payment, the better the rate will be, because you will have more equity from the beginning. You can pay points to lower your interest rate over the life of the loan, meaning you pay more up front. For a lot of people, this makes sense and is a good deal..
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