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Mortgage Refinance 101


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Mortgage refinancing is when you take out a new mortgage to replace your old one.

Refinancing can provide cash, lower your monthly payments and/or lower your overall costs.

When thinking about whether to refinance a mortgage:

  • Compare what you're paying out-of-pocket to what you would pay if the rates are lower. 
  • Consider the closing costs and fees - though they may not be as important to you right now as compared to monthly payments - particularly if payment of the costs comes from the refinance proceeds. If you refinance with your current lender, some costs may be waived or reduced, such as for title insurance and appraisals. (Keep in mind that fees are negotiable.)
  • Anticipate at least 45 days for a refinancing. If interest rates are low, there may be a lot of mortgage activity and the process could take even longer. Banks tend to process new home purchases before refinances.

If you decide to refinance, it is wise to shop around to find the best interest rate combined with the type of mortgage that is best for you. At least consider:

  • interest rate
  • Whether the rate is variable (adjustable) 
  • The length of the loan term.

For information about mortgage refinancing, see:

NOTE: It would be helpful if the lender offers mortgage insurance with few or no health questions or can point you to a source for purchasing it on your own. Mortgage insurance pays off the loan in case you die.

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