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Why Refinance--Can it Help?

by Gil  Mackey
Mortgage Directory Columnist

There are a number of reasons why mortgage refinancing might be the right move for you. Chances are one of the following applies to you.

Why Refinance?

There are four primary reasons most homeowners decide to refinance their mortgage:
  1. Debt consolidation
  2. Access to home equity
  3. Getting better mortgage terms
  4. Reduce monthly mortgage payments

Reduce Monthly Mortgage Payments

Mortgage refinancing can help reduce your monthly payments by extending the length of your home loan; if for example, you have been paying on your mortgage for 5 years, refinancing the balance over 30 years will lower your payment even if the interest rate stayed the same. While this increases the amount of time it will take to pay off your mortgage, it may be the best way to get out of a financial jam or free up cash for other investments. Your home is an asset that should be properly managed, and if you need to maximize monthly cash flow a refinance could help.

Debt Consolidation

Whether you have high interest consumer debt or a first and second mortgage you want to combine, refinancing can be a great way to lower your monthly payments overall. First take a hard look at your lifestyle. If unnecessary spending has gone too far, you will need to change your habits or you could end up worse off--and unable to refinance again to bail yourself out.

Access to Home Equity

Getting cash out of your home is a huge reason homeowners get a mortgage refinance. If you want to make home improvements or investments your home equity could be the answer.

Improving Mortgage Terms

You may be able to get better terms than the mortgage you have now. For example, you improved your credit rating and can refinance out of a subprime loan, or you might want to get a fixed rate loan while rates are relatively low, or perhaps a new hybrid ARM with a lower rate. It can never hurt to see what's available and if your current loan can be improved.

If you're curious now about a home loan refinance, start by talking with your mortgage lender and explore your options.

About the Author
Gil Mackey has been a writer and artist for the past twenty years. In addition to freelance writing, he writes for his local paper, and lives with his two children in Nevada.

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