Adjustable-rate mortgages or ARMs have interest rates that adjust over a period of time. ARMs have had a notoriously bad reputation because of the mortgage meltdown and subsequent recession. While this reputation was justified in the past, most of those exotic ARMs no longer exist.
An adjustable-rate mortgage, or ARM, is a home loan with an interest rate that can change periodically. This means that the monthly payments can go up or down. Generally, the initial interest rate is lower than that of a comparable fixed-rate mortgage. After that period ends, interest rates – and your monthly payments – can go lower or higher.