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If you are a homeowner, you may have considered refinancing your current mortgage. Refinancing can offer many advantages to help you meet your financial goals. If you are just starting to look into refinancing, or have been thinking about it for a while, here are three benefits that you should consider.
You can take advantage of the equity you have built in your home with a cash-out refinance. To take advantage of this, you would refinance your current mortgage for more than the amount you owe, and keep the extra money. For example, if you owe $150,000 on a home worth $250,000, you have $100,000 worth of equity in your home. You could refinance your home for $175,000, and receive a check for the $25,000 difference. You could use this money for home improvements and remodeling, or any other household needs you may have.
Another refinancing option is to shorten your loan term, so you pay your home off in less time. For example, you might switch from a 30-year loan to a 20-year loan. This would allow you to build equity faster, and pay off your loan in less time, with the same (or marginally higher) monthly payments. If you have an adjustable-rate or interest-only loan, you may be able to refinance to a fixed-rate loan product that may save you money over the life of your loan, and may allow you to build equity.
A conventional mortgage refers to a loan that is not insured or guaranteed by the federal government. A conventional, or conforming, mortgage adheres to the guidelines set by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. It may have either a fixed or adjustable rate. The maximum limit for a conforming loan depends on the county and state you live in.
Conventional loans can be either Fixed or an adjustable rate. Fixed-rate mortgages have a set interest rate for the entire length of the mortgage term which can be between 10 and 30 years. An adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) has a term of 30 years with a low introductory rate for a fixed period followed by periodic adjustments according to a specific benchmark, typically a specific LIBOR or a T-Bill index.
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