15 Year vs 30 Year Mortgage: Pros and Cons

Real Estate

Choosing between a 15-year mortgage and a 30-year mortgage can be a difficult decision to say the least.

Unfortunately, there isn’t a universal answer as to which one is better, and it differs depending on each person’s individual circumstances. The following is everything you need to know about 15-year mortgages and 30-year mortgages in order for you to make an informed decision.

15 Year Mortgage

In essence, a fifteen-year mortgage means you pay your home off completely in half the time, but it certainly comes at a cost.

Here’s what you need to know:

There are certainly some very appealing advantages to choosing a fifteen year mortgage. Although the higher monthly cost may be scary to look at at first, here are a few advantages of a 15-year mortgage to consider:

Pay off your mortgage in half the time
Lower interest rate
Build equity faster

Ultimately, the main benefit of choosing a fifteen year mortgage is the fact that you will pay your mortgage off in half the time, instead of having a mortgage payment hanging over your head for thirty years. Additionally, you will actually pay much less as the interest rate will be far lower also.

There are some drawbacks to a 15-year mortgage, which are:


Higher monthly mortgage payment
May become a burden if your financial situation changes
Inability to save money each month

 15-year mortgage payments are only ideal if you are in a financial position to support the increased monthly payment. In the event your financial situation changes, the higher monthly mortgage payment may cause a lot of stress, especially if you haven’t been able to save up much money beforehand.

30 Year Mortgage
A 30-year mortgage offers lower payments each month, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s the best option.

Check out these pros and cons before making your final decision:

A 30-year mortgage is ideal for anyone not in a position to make really high mortgage payments each month. Here is a complete list of the most prominent advantages of choosing a thirty-year mortgage:

Lower monthly payments
Ability to save money each month
May qualify for a higher loan

In the event you are not in a position to pay much higher mortgage payments each month, or you would rather save money each month and do not mind paying a mortgage long term, a 30-year mortgage is probably the best option for you as it provides financial flexibility.

 30-year mortgages typically seem more appealing initially as you are able to pay less each month, but they have some disadvantages as well.

Higher interest rate
Make mortgage payments for twice as long
Home equity builds much slower

If you are simply looking to spend the least amount of money possible on your home, and you are in a financial position to make higher payments, then a 30 year mortgage may not be ideal as you are likely to pay much more due to a higher interest rate.


Annette Masterson is a licensed broker with EXIT Realty Bob Lamb & Associates in Murfreesboro, TN. She has developed one of the most successful real estate teams in Rutherford County, known as Masterson Network, that specializes in new home construction and residential listings and sales throughout Middle Tennessee. You can email Annette at mastersonnetwork@gmail.com or call her at 615-896-5656 (Office) or 615-533-1660 (Cell) for more information.