Monday, February 18, 2013

A Mortgage Refinance Primer

There are two common situations which lead people to consider refinancing their mortgage. One is to save money by taking advantage of lower interest rates. The other is to manage an unwieldy debt repayment situation. If you are currently looking out to refinance your existing mortgage here are some important points you should consider very carefully.

Debt management is a prime reason for refinancing. If you find yourself wrestling around with the same repayment issues every month, then it may be a good idea to get a loan on your mortgage by refinancing it. Use the loan to pay off all your smaller debts. This leaves you with just a single loan repayment every month. Do choose a repayment scheme which you know you can handle easily.

If you're keen on saving money by reducing the interest burden of your current mortgage, then getting a fresh financing scheme may help you save a sizable sum of money. This works if your current mortgage is linked with the variable market rate, the current interest rate is very high and the market trend shows no inclination of climbing down. You can save a lot of money by opting out of your current mortgage and getting it refinanced. The secret is to get a fixed-rate loan with a reasonable interest rate.

Don't get carried away with the idea that refinancing is advisable for all situations, or that it will benefit you at all. There are many situations when refinancing can cost you heavily.

Many a time, refinancing companies fail to mention what the actual cost of refinancing is. You may think you have hit upon the perfect plan which will save you at least ,000 over the next 10 years. Only, you find that you have to pay brokerage fees of 00, a foreclosure penalty of 00, and some other fees amounting to 00 to initiate the refinance! So instead of saving ,000 you actually end up losing (in a manner of speaking) 0! Even if you don't end up 'losing' money the amount of saving may be so low as to be negligible, in which case the whole refinance exercise is pointless and best avoided.

Refinancing your mortgage is a serious financial decision. Therefore you should perform a due diligence market survey before taking up a refinance option. Find out the various plans and schemes offered by various companies in your locality and online. Carefully weigh the pros and cons of these schemes and tabulate your results for easy analysis.

You may not know it, but refinancing may impose certain penalties on you. The previous financier holding your mortgage may impose a penalty to release the mortgage. This could be heavy if you have not anticipated it. The mortgage broker can exact a fee called origination fees or simply as 'points', which could severely affect your savings. Take all these penalties and payments into consideration when computing your expected savings.

Refinancing will be beneficial for you if you are able to save more than you spend on all the fees and penalties involved in refinancing. One very important factor that you must consider is whether there are chances of your moving out before the refinanced mortgage expires. If there are good chances of your moving out soon, then, far from saving you money, the refinance is going to cost you a packet!

Refinancing your mortgage is a good way to save money by opting for a lower interest rate regimen. It is also a good way of consolidating your debts. But that is not be construed as a clean chit for every situation. Refinance has to be debated on a case by case basis according to the particulars of the situation. So what works for Bob may not work for Bill. The most important thing is to perform an exhaustive market survey before going in for refinance. Be very careful in computing the refinancing costs. Ask other people who have taken this route about their experiences and seek their advice. Be wary of hidden charges. These surprise charges may make the difference between saving ,000 and paying out 0!

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