Refinance Tips

Below are several factors you should consider before refinancing your home.

Evaluate Your Assets

Saving money is important to many consumers in today’s economy, and refinancing your home loan is one way you can lower your monthly payments. A careful analysis combined with the advice of your mortgage broker will ensure that you make the right decision.

Deciding to Refinance

The decision on whether or not to refinance has, in the past, meant balancing the savings of a lower monthly payment against the costs of refinancing. In recent years, mortgage lenders have introduced “no cost” and low-cost refinancing packages that minimize or completely eliminate the out-of-pocket expenses of refinancing. With traditional refinancing, the interest rate for your new mortgage is often about two percentage points below the rate of your current mortgage. However, with the newer low and no-cost refinancing programs offered, home owners can find it valuable to refinance to obtain a smaller reduction in interest rates.

Cash Out Refinance

Many mortgage lenders will offer a refinance package where you refinance for more than the balance remaining on your old home loan. In the mortgage world this is called “cashing out”. The economy has also caused interest rates to drop recently which may allow you to refinance your home without increasing your monthly payments. The extra cash that results from refinancing can be used for many purposes; one of the smartest ways to use these funds is to pay off any loans with higher interest rates. If you are in a positive position regarding debt, you may be interested in using the money for a more enjoyable purpose, such as building an addition on to your home. However you decide to spend the money, your mortgage broker can help you through the process.

Will Paying Points Affect My Rate?

When homeowners make the decision to refinance their home loan they must decide which interest rate will work best for their situation. There is typically a range of interest rates at different amounts of points. Remember, a point is equal to one percent of the loan amount. When you work with your home loan advisor you will be able to analyze the different interest rates and related points, which can save you money. Be sure to discuss all options with your home loan advisor before making a decision.

Refinance Expenses

The costs associated with refinancing are similar to those of obtaining an original home loan and include legal fees, application fees, settlement costs and other related fees. When refinancing, additional fees will arise and they can include a fee charged if you paid off your original mortgage early, the points associated with the refinance and the home loan interest rate. Typically the cost runs between three and six percent of the total amount of the home loan. Contact Allentown Mortgage Corp to discuss the various costs and laws governing the fees charged by mortgage companies and the potential savings you can benefit from.

Your Second Refinance

Refinancing may be worth your while if you can reduce your monthly payments. The money that American’s are saving can be used to build emergency cash funds, build additions onto their homes or they can save it for a child’s college fund. Have your mortgage broker explain the tax write off associated with a second refinance.

Converting Your ARM to a Fixed Rate

Homeowners have two rate options when refinancing their home loan, fixed rate mortgages and adjustable rate mortgages, often referred to as ARMs. ARMs are attractive in today’s economy because they offer very low introductory rates. But, due to financial market instability these rates can jump quickly and homeowners may find themselves paying more than they had bargained for. Adjustable rate mortgages are not always unpredictable though; homeowners who know the length of time they plan to stay in their home may secure an ARM for that specific amount of time, which will save the homeowner money and avoid rising payments.

Refinance and Taxes

Many homeowners find the tax issues related to the home loan refinance process confusing, but your mortgage broker will guide you through the process. To explain briefly, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has ruled that interest paid for refinancing must be deducted over the life of the loan. However, if the home loan is being used to make improvements to your house, the borrowers may be permitted to deduct a portion of the interest right away. The exact tax laws concerning refinancing are complex and the details should be discussed with your mortgage broker.

For a free, no obligation consultation do not hesitate to contact us or ask a question.