The Benefits of Refinancing
Beyond potentially saving you thousands of dollars, refinancing your mortgage can also help you consolidate debt and pay off other bills. Your life has probably changed from the time you first got your home loan. Perhaps you got a better paying job or you have a new baby on the way. You may have new expenses that never existed before, or you may be making more money than when you started. In many cases, refinancing your home loan could save you hundreds, or even thousands of dollars – money which could be well spent in other areas of your life. Ideally, your mortgage should not be costing you above one third of your total gross income. If you’re dealing with a high interest rate, you’ve been hit with an adjustable rate that has skyrocketed, or you’ve experienced a drop in income for whatever reason – it’s a good idea to consider refinancing and locking in a better rate.
Working with a Trusted Lender
Working with a trusted lender is one of the best decisions you can make when you decide to refinance. Trusted lenders, like CIBC or TD for example, understand a multitude of product options and can explain those options to you as well as the costs that are involved in the refinancing process.
Know Your Options
There’s no shortage of lending companies vying for your business. But it pays to do your own research as well. Take advantage of online mortgage calculators and run different scenarios based on your income, property tax, and extra payments you can afford to make. See exactly how much home you can afford and create a spectrum of possibilities for refinancing. Then, speak with a home loan consultant who can help you with your financing needs.You may be pleasantly surprised at just how much money you’ll save by refinancing at today’s low rates. Overall, honest, exceptional service and a dedication to customer satisfaction are what make the best mortgage refinancing lenders stand out.
Before you take any action, however, you need to know exactly where you stand financially. Look over all your outstanding debt – credit cards, car payments, mortgage or rent, student loans – to help you determine where you are and which obligations have priority. These tips from Wells Fargo can help you responsibly manage your debt and strengthen your credit situation.
* Organizing debt: Not all types of debt affect your finances equally. Collect recent statements from all your creditors. Write down the creditor, amount owed, monthly payment and interest rate on your account. Knowing which debts have the highest minimum monthly payments and interest rates will help you determine which debt is costing you the most.
* Prioritizing payments: Examine where you can cut back on expenses, and put that money toward your debts. Try paying off your debts with the highest interest rates as quickly as you can, while continuing to pay at least the minimum due on all of your other debts each month. Once you’ve paid off the credit card with the highest interest rate, put that money toward the next highest.
* Calling creditors: If you can’t make a payment or need to make a partial payment, talk to your creditors about setting up a payment plan you can afford. You may be surprised – many creditors will be willing to work with you to find a solution.
* Refinancing your mortgage: If interest rates have dropped since you took out your mortgage loan, consider refinancing to lower your monthly payments. If refinancing isn’t an option, consider other options to repay your loan more quickly. For example, sending additional principal payments with your regular payments decreases the loan balance and reduces the overall interest owed.
* Seeing a credit counselor: These professionals will need to see all your financial material so that they can help you explore your options and make a plan to get you out of debt. To find a reputable credit counselor, Make sure the credit counselling agency you choose is in good standing with a provincial or national credit association, such as Credit Counselling Canada. Be sure to also check their standing with the Better Business Bureau. Make sure the credit counselling agency is not the subject of any serious unresolved complaints, such as not paying creditors on time or making false promises to clients.
* Consolidating your debt: You might want to consider combining all of your debts into a single loan. This allows you to pay off your debt with one monthly payment, which could be lower than all of your previous monthly payments combined. It will also make it easier to keep track of your debt. Keep in mind that a debt consolidation loan simply transfers the debt to a new lender – you’ll still have debt. Additionally, if your consolidation loan has a longer repayment period, it could increase the total amount you repay. You can pay the loan off faster, of course, by making more than a minimum payment each month.-
There is hope if you are in debt. Creating a manageable plan to chart a path out of debt can give you confidence in knowing that you are in control of your finances and improving your credit health. For more information, visit the Wells Fargo Smarter Credit Center, www.WellsFargo.com/smarter_credit.