I just had someone email me something interesting today about their adjustable-rate mortgage resetting â€“- but to considerably lower levels. How widespread is this phenomenon? Or, asked differently, what percentage of ARMs are tied to Treasuries, as opposed to Libor, etc.? Iâ€™d love to see some data.
Here is the relevant part of the email (in anonymized form):
My seven-year ARM came up for reset this month, which I had been dreading, figuring that by putting off my refi I’d exposed myself to bad craziness in this market. Would I not be able to refi? Would I have to accept 8% or worse? The loan was 6.25 percent at origination, with a 2% annual cap on adjustments. I’d not refid at the bottom [for personal reasons].
Quite the opposite happened. My rate went down 2 points to 4.25%. It would have gone to 4 but for the 2 pct annual cap, which works in both directions. (I had only ever thought of it as a protection for me in the other direction). The net impact on my budget was $312 monthly, before tax effects. Which could let me do salutary consumption like buying a car, or adding some bedroom furniture, without the slightest impact on my budget. Or just dump it into a 529 plan. Between that and the falling price of gas, it’s a pretty huge impact.