How to Refinance Your Home by, refinance home mortgage.#Refinance #home #mortgage


How to refinance your mortgage

Thinking about refinancing? Great! HSH.com has everything you need to help you get your refinance underway. We will help you to know whether refinancing is right for your situation, show you how to compare and minimize refinancing.

Thinking about refinancing? Great! HSH.com has everything you need to help you get your refinance underway. We will help you to know whether refinancing is right for your situation, show you how to compare and minimize refinancing costs, teach you different strategies to achieve your goals and even help you locate lenders to handle your new mortgage. Using our articles, tools and calculators, you’ll feel confident that you are getting the best possible deal for your circumstance.

5 stages of a refinance

Should I refinance?

Step 1: Should I refinance?

Should I refinance, or does a refinance make sense for me are likely the first questions you will ask yourself when considering a refinance. But they re just the first. You ll also be asking yourself:

  • Will my refinance save me money?
  • Do I have to refinance with my current lender?
  • What if I can t refinance?

To the answers to these questions and more, be sure to read “Does a mortgage refinance make sense?”

How to refinance

Step 2: How to refinance

Now that you have decided to refinance your mortgage, you need to know how. The refinance process can be divided into three phases:

No. 1: Preparing your refinance documentation

No. 2: Defining the purpose of your refinance

No. 3: Shopping around for the best deal

What does a refinance cost?

Step 3: What does a refinance cost?

There s no such thing as a free refinance. Just as with a purchase mortgage, you will have to pay closing costs when refinancing your home loan. Keep in mind, of course, that the more it costs you to refinance, the longer it will take to recoup the closing costs, so there may be some finite limits on what you want to pay.

There are three ways to pay refinancing fees and costs:

  1. Pay them in cash
  2. Pay them out of pocket
  3. Add them onto your existing mortgage balance (known as a low cash-out refinance) or have your lender pay them in exchange for a slightly higher interest rate

Current Mortgage Rates Today – View The Best Mortgage Rates, mortgage rates refinance.#Mortgage #rates #refinance


Current Mortgage Rates Today

Current Mortgage Rates – Mortgage Rates Today

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Mortgage 101: A Mortgage Resource Guide

This guide will help first-time home buyers and seasoned veterans get the information they need to make the correct financial decision regarding their mortgage. Our goal is to provide information and resources for everything you need to know about the mortgage process. Whether you are shopping for your first home or you are already established in a existing home, this page can be your guide. Take the necessary steps to make purchasing your first home or maintaining your existing home a seamless [Read More. ]

Latest Mortgage Information

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Top 10 Loan Modification Lenders

Many Americans have been affected by the recent economic crisis. Millions of homes have gone into foreclosure, and millions of families have lost their homes. If you are at risk for losing your home, the good [Read More. ]

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How to Tell if Current Mortgage Interest Rates Will Continue to Rise

Up until not long ago mortgage rates used to be very low, close to the lowest they have ever been. Rates have decreased to near record lows due to the recent housing market crash, which affected both homeowners and mortgage lenders. While millions of people have lost their [Read More. ]

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Could a 10 Year Mortgage Rate Be Your Best Mortgage Option?

One of the key aspects of finding a good mortgage loan is determining what type of mortgage term works out best for you. Long-term mortgage loans seem more attractive at first glance because the monthly payment is much smaller, but if you factor in the larger interest rate, [Read More. ]

Mortgage rates refinance

How the Current Government Shutdown is Affecting FHA Mortgages

The housing market has been recovering steadily lately, but the current government shutdown may interfere with that progress. For the first time in 17 years, the government has partially shut down. Besides other important implications, this shutdown could affect people who [Read More. ]

Mortgage rates refinance

Bad Credit Home Loans Are They Possible With Today s Stiffer Regulations?

There are many reasons for having a bad credit score, and you might be wondering if you are still able to buy a home, despite your shortcomings. The truth is that there are no rules set in stone when it comes to bad credit home loans. Some lenders may be more lenient than [Read More. ]

Mortgage rates refinance

What is this Difference Between a Home Equity Line of Credit vs Home Equity Loan

When buying a home with a mortgage loan, both you and your lender own parts of the home. The part of the home that you own is represented by the equity which builds up each time you make a payment. Having equity in your home allows you to take out a house equity loan by [Read More. ]

Mortgage rates refinance

What Are the Typical Home Equity Loan Requirements

Home equity loans are designed to help homeowners gain quick access to some much needed cash by tapping into the equity in their homes. Home equity loans provide an alternative to taking out other types of loans or opening new credit card accounts. While other forms of [Read More. ]

Mortgage rates refinance

Pros and Cons of Home Equity Loans

Home equity loans allow homeowners to take out a loan using the equity accumulated in their home as collateral. Home equity loans give you quick access to money that can be used for a home remodeling project, medical bills or college tuition. A home equity loan can be more [Read More. ]

Mortgage rates refinance

Is it Possible to get a Home Equity Loan With Bad Credit?

Getting a home equity loan with poor credit is more difficult, but not impossible. Before you decide to make improvements to your home or decide that you need some quick cash, you need to find out if a lender is willing to give you a home improvement loan and how your loan [Read More. ]


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The Seattle Office of Housing builds strong healthy communities and increases opportunities for people of all income levels to live in our city. For 35 years, the City has managed investments from the Seattle Housing Levy and other state and federal sources to fund the preservation and production of affordable apartments and homes. The Office of Housing also develops policies and manages programs that support further affordable housing production. To date, the City has created and preserved over 13,000 affordable homes throughout the city, helped 900 families purchase their first home, and provided emergency rental assistance to 6,500 households.

Request for Proposals for Equitable Transit-Oriented Development at Northgate Station

A Pre-Proposal Conference will be held on Tuesday, November 14, 2017 at 10:00am in Procurement Conference Room #328, 401 Fifth Avenue, 3rd Floor, Seattle, Washington, 98104

Proposals are due by December 21, 2017 at 2:00 PM . View the RFP on King County’s procurement website.

Seattle Housing Levy Dashboard Launched

As part of the City’s commitment to transparency around voter-approved initiatives, two new public facing websites were launched in September 2017 for the Seattle Preschool Program and the Housing Levy. These sites contribute to a growing body of work that will provide transparency to voters by describing progress over time toward stated goals and commitments. Check out the Housing Levy Dashboard as well as others on Seattle’s new Performance Hub.

Request for Proposals for Equitable Transit-Oriented Development at Roosevelt Station

On August 4, 2017, the Office of Housing and Sound Transit published a joint request for proposals (RFP) for equitable transit-oriented development on property adjacent to the future Roosevelt light rail station. OH announced $15 million in funding is available for site-specific affordable housing development on land offered by Sound Transit. OH and Sound Transit are seeking proposals to maximize the creation of affordable homes and meet a range of shared goals. Read the press release.

Request for Proposals for Resale-Restricted, Affordable Homeownership Development on Surplus Property

On July 25, 2017, the Office of Housing published a request for proposals (RFP) seeking proposals from qualified developers interested in acquiring City-owned land at 1312-1326 Yakima Avenue South to develop resale-restricted, affordable ownership housing on the site. The City’s objectives to create lasting community benefit include an affordability period of not less than 50 years, maximizing the site’s development potential and the creation of high-quality product.

Proposals are due by September 28, 2017 at 5:00 PM. View the RFP here. Questions can be directed to Erika Malone 206-684-0247, [email protected]

Foreclosure Prevention Pilot Program: Request for Proposals to Administer Loan Fund

On July 24, 2017, the Office of Housing published a request for proposals (RFP) for an administrator for the new Foreclosure Prevention Pilot Program. The pilot period is 24-months and the efficacy of the program will be evaluated after that period.

Proposals are due by August 31, 2017 at 5:00 PM. View the RFP here. Questions can be directed to Erika Malone 206-684-0247, [email protected]

2017 Rental Housing Program Notice of Funding Availability Announcement – $49.5 million

On July 6th, 2017, the Office of Housing is announcing $49.5 million in funding for affordable multifamily rental housing. View full Notice of Funding Availability announcement and application.

Housing Levy Admin Finance Plan Approved

The Seattle City Council recently approved the Administrative and Financial Plan for the 2016 Seattle Housing Levy. This plan guides implementation of the levy for the next two years. Download the A F Plan

2009 Seattle Housing Levy Fulfills on its Promise

The 2016 Annual Report has been published for the 2009 Housing Levy, wrapping up seven years of investment in affordable housing. The Levy has exceeded its goals for all programs, fulfilling the promise made to voters. Read the Housing Levy Annual Report


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$0. NO UPFRONT FEES or POINTS ARE

PAID TO MEMBERS MORTGAGE*

*(the borrower must order / pay for their appraisal. A refund of $350 max is paid at the closing of the loan)

Our Mortgage Loan Program does not charge any upfront fees such as an application fee, a credit report fee, a processing fee, etc. No borrower paid points or borrower paid broker fees are charged. This provides a significant savings to the union members. We are paid for our services directly by The Lender!

Our competitors collect from both you and The Lender. they just don’t mention that part. thus, not the same Savings!

The borrower is required per HVCC to order and pay for their appraisal. A refund is provided at the time of closing ($350 max).

As in all mortgage loans, other costs do apply. Lender fees, Title Insurance fees, State/County related fees, settlements fees..etc.

A Summary of Mortgage Loan Closing Costs is Provided Below:

Members Mortgage Corp . was created in 1999, specifically to provide an honest and affordable Mortgage Loan Program to NYC ‘s Police and Firefighter Union Members and their families as a way of giving back to those who give so much of themselves. It was received enthusiastically by the union memberships and proved to be an immediate success. We were literally closing thousands of loans a year and the savings for the union members was staggering ! The popularity and integrity of the program was recognized by many and soon other unions were requesting the ability to provide the program to their memberships. Since then we have grown to over 150 unions participating in our program . and the program continues to Grow and Grow .

We have never waivered from our original mission of providing union members and their families a Honest Mortgage Program that has significant savings to them. To date, we feel quite proud of the fact that we have saved over $50 million in mortgage and related cost for union members and their families. A truly remarkable feat !!

Help us to continue to save union members money on their mortgage loan by helping us to.

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We Are The Only “Union ONLY” Mortgage Loan Provder.

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Buying a home is one of the biggest purchases most of us make. House hunting can be exciting and disappointing at the same time. Some people find the perfect home in three days, for others, it can take months.

We’ve seen it all. And we understand how you feel. Once you finally find the perfect home, let us help you quickly find the perfect mortgage.

A review of our Loan Programs appears on this website. Call or e-mail us and we’ll develop a personalized quote.

Are you already living in your dream home? Maybe it can be even dreamier with a lower monthly mortgage payment! Refinancing could be the way to go. Check it out with our Refinance Mortgage Calculator.

Or, try out our Debt Consolidation Mortgage Calculator to see if a home equity loan or second mortgage would work for you.

Buying a home is a big investment. We can be there with you every step of the way. Our company has been in this business for a long time, and we invite you to put our experience and expertise to work for you.


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Refinance Your Mortgage

How do you want to get started?

With Rocket Mortgage by Quicken Loans, our fast, powerful and completely online way to get a mortgage, you can quickly see how refinancing your home can help you achieve your financial goals.

Answer a few questions, and we’ll have a Home Loan Expert call you.

The Basics

What to Know Before You Refinance Your Home

What does it mean to refinance? Refinancing is the act of taking on a new loan with different terms. Reasons for refinancing your mortgage include lowering your payment, shortening your term or using the equity you’ve built up over time to get cash back out of your home.

What’s Your Goal?

Deciding if it makes sense to refinance your home depends on a number of factors, but it starts with one question: What do you want out of your refinance? Here are some of the main reasons homeowners decide to refinance their mortgage:

Talk to a Home Loan Expert or use our refinance calculator to see if refinancing your home can help you meet your financial goals.

See Today s Mortgage Rates

Want to find out if refinancing is right for you? A good way to start is by looking at the current mortgage rates. Don’t forget – rates change daily based on the market, so if you like what you see, make sure to talk to a Home Loan Expert to get your personalized rate and lock it in as soon as possible.

Try Our Refinance Calculator

Want to see if refinancing makes sense for you? Try our refinance calculator. Here’s how it works.

First, we’ll ask about your primary goal for your new loan. You can choose between lowering your payment and paying off your home sooner. Depending on which option you select, you’ll either be asked what your current monthly payment is or how many years you have left on your loan.

After that, you’ll be asked to estimate what you still owe and how much your home is worth to determine the amount of the loan. Then, you ll input a rough credit estimate and your ZIP code.

The results page will show you a sample rate and payment. You can adjust the rate and type of loan, as well as add taxes and insurance to find out if refinancing your mortgage can help you meet your financial goals.

Calculate your rate now to see if refinancing is right for you.

Frequently Asked Questions

What documents are required to refinance?

The following is a list of documents generally required during the refinance application process:

  • Proof of income: Typically, you’ll need to show original pay stubs for the last 30 days.
  • Copy of homeowners insurance: We ll need to verify that you have current and sufficient coverage on your home.
  • Copies of your W-2 forms: Each loan applicant will need to supply W-2 forms so we can verify past employment and income history.
  • Copies of asset information: This includes statements for accounts that hold money for closing costs, statements for savings, statements for checking and 401(k) accounts, and investment records for mutual funds or stocks.
  • Copy of title insurance: This helps us verify things like taxes, names on the title and the legal description of the property.

Your lender will also need to pull your credit report as a part of the refinance process, so have your Social Security number handy when it’s time to apply.

Check out QLCredit to view your full credit report. Creating an account is free and won’t affect your credit score.

How much does it cost to refinance?

It’s possible to add the costs associated with getting a new mortgage into the total refinance amount to avoid paying anything out of pocket at closing. However, refinancing in order to lower your payment, get cash out or consolidate your debt may result in a longer loan term or a higher rate, and that might mean paying more in interest overall in the long run.

When should I refinance my mortgage?

There’s no definitive guideline as to how long you should wait to refinance after buying a home. The most important thing is to make sure the refinance will help you meet your financial goals. These are some questions to consider when determining whether to refinance:

  • Does your current lender have a prepayment penalty?
  • Do you have enough equity in your home?
  • Are interest rates lower now than they were when you got your current home loan?
  • Do you plan to stay in your home for several more years?

What is equity? Why is it important for refinancing?

Equity is the appraised value of your home minus the amount you still owe on your loan.

The value of equity depends on your goal for refinancing. The more equity you have, the more money you may be able to get from a cash-out refinance. Or, more equity could result in a better interest rate, which may help you lower your monthly payment. Having enough equity may also help you eliminate private mortgage insurance (PMI), a costly monthly fee included in many mortgages with an original down payment of less than 20%. Talk to a Home Loan Expert or use our refinance calculator to see if you have enough equity to reach your financial goals.

Talk to a Home Loan Expert or use our refinance calculator to see if refinancing your home can help you meet your goal.


12 ways to get the lowest mortgage refinance rates, refinance mortgage rates.#Refinance #mortgage #rates


12 ways to get the lowest mortgage refinance rates

If you’re considering refinancing your mortgage, you are likely eager to find the lowest mortgage refinance rates.

But before you start shopping around for the lowest rates, experts say you should establish your objectives and prepare your finances to improve your chances of qualifying for the lowest interest rate.

First, figure out the best loan product to meet your financial goals, and then you can start looking for the most competitive mortgage rates, says Michael Jablonski, executive vice president and retail production manager for BB T Mortgage in Wilson, North Carolina.

Here are 12 steps that will help lock in the lowest refinance rate possible:

No.1: Raise your credit score

“Typically, a credit score of 740 or higher puts borrowers in the best tier for a conventional loan program,” says Michael Smith, first vice president business development manager for mortgage lending for California Bank and Trust in San Diego.

Most lenders require a minimum credit score of 620 to 640, but you’ll pay a higher mortgage rate for conventional loans unless your score is 740 or above. However, some portfolio lenders set their own guidelines.

No. 2: Lower your debt

Paying bills on time and paying down your credit card balance can reduce your debt-to-income ratio, or DTI, which improves your chances of qualifying for a low mortgage rate, says Jablonski.

A good rule of thumb is to make sure your debt-to-income ratio is no more than 36 percent, and even lower is better.

“Don’t buy a new car, make other major purchases or fill out multiple credit applications before you refinance, because all of those actions can hurt your credit profile,” says Smith.

Even if you have a high credit score, you may be denied a refinance altogether or subjected to higher interest rates if your DTI ratio is too high, says Jablonski.

No. 3: Increase your home equity

Remember that your credit scores and the loan-to-value ratio of your property could have a much bigger impact on your refinance rate than a slight shift in average mortgage rates, says Malcolm Hollensteiner, director of retail lending sales for TD Bank in Vienna, Virginia.

“Both a lower-than-average credit score and a high loan-to-value can lead to a more expensive interest rate,” he says.

If you are underwater on your mortgage, a Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) loan may be your best option.

No. 4: Organize your financial documentation

You should get your credit reports from all three bureaus to make sure there are no mistakes that need correcting before you apply for a refinance, says Smith.

A refinance application typically requires two years of tax returns with W2s, two recent pay stubs, and your two most recent bank and investment statements.

“Gathering these materials ahead of time can expedite the loan process and prevent you from paying extra for an extension of your rate lock,” says Smith.

No. 5: Save cash for closing costs

Closing costs average about 2 percent of the loan amount.

“You can pay cash for the closing costs or, if you have enough equity, you can roll these costs into your new loan,” says Hollensteiner. “Another option that some lenders offer is to pay a higher interest rate for a lender credit to cover those costs.”

Shop smart for your refinance

Once your preparations are complete, you can begin to shop around for the refinance that works best for you.

No. 6: Start online

Deborah Ames Naylor, executive vice president of Pentagon Federal Credit Union in Alexandria, Virginia, recommends starting online with a refinance calculator that estimates your monthly payments at various loan terms.

“A shorter term loan will have a lower interest rate than a 30-year fixed-rate loan, but the payment will be higher because you’re paying it off faster,” says Naylor. “It’s important to decide what payment you’re comfortable making before you see a lender, because that payment could be much less than the payment you qualify for.”

No. 7: Decide on a loan term

Barry Habib, founder and CEO of MBS Highway in New York City, says the loan term you choose needs to be made in the context of your other financial obligations and plans.

“If you have $30,000 in credit card debt and no savings for college, you may want to go for a 30-year loan to keep the payments as low as possible,” says Habib. “Someone else may want a shorter term to build equity faster while another borrower might want a longer loan so they can keep their tax deduction as long as possible.”

No. 8: Talk to multiple lenders

Once you ve decided on your loan term ,it s time to research loan products available from a credit union, a regional or community bank, a direct lender and a national bank to find out what special programs they offer, says Naylor.

“Many lenders offer ‘portfolio loans,’ ones they keep in-house instead of selling on the secondary market,” she says. “They can be more flexible with those loans and offer special promotions.”

Instead of choosing a lender solely based on current mortgage rates, Russ Anderson, senior vice president and a centralized sales executive with Bank of America in Los Angeles, says you need to find a lender you can trust. “People get too wrapped up in the rate rather than finding someone who will communicate with them,” he says. “You need to find someone you trust, who will be engaged in your family’s financial situation.”

No. 9: Review all your loan options

Lenders can discuss various loan products when you interview them.

“There’s a broad product mix of conventional financing, government-backed programs like FHA loans and special refinancing programs through the Making Home Affordable program,” says Anderson. “A good lender can present the pros and cons of each of these programs in the context of your individual finances.”

No. 10: Decide how you will finance your refinance

You ll also need to decide how to pay for your refinance. Closing costs and lender fees can be paid at closing, wrapped into your loan balance or you can opt for a “no-cost” refinance.

“A no-cost refinance means that your lender will pay the fees and you’ll pay a slightly higher interest rate of one-eighth to one-fourth percent,” says Habib.

HSH.com’s Tri-Refi refinance calculator can help you decide the best way to finance your refinance. Here’s how:

HSH.com s Refinance Calculator

No. 11: Compare mortgage rates and fees

Advertised mortgage rates are sometimes based on paying points, so you need to make sure you compare loans with zero points or the same number of points.

“It’s important to shop for the same loan on the same day to get a true comparison of mortgage rates, because mortgage rates change every day,” says Smith. “You need to explain to each loan officer all the criteria for your refinance, not just ask ‘what’s today’s rate on a $200,000 loan?’ You should also ask about loan processing times.”

Shopping by APR can be confusing, since different lender fees and policies can affect the outcome. It is possible for two loans to have identical rates and fees and different APRs. Conversely, two loans could have the same APR but different interest rates. Because of this, it is usually better for you to focus instead on the two most important components of APR: interest rate and fees.

The most important component of your refinance will generally be the interest rate, so you’ll of course want to pay attention to that. Fees and closing costs matter, but whether you want or need to pay them will depend upon your situation. There are times when paying costs to obtain the lowest mortgage refinance rates can make sense and times when it does not.

No. 12: Know when to lock-in your rate

Once you ve finalized your loan decision you should consult your lender about when to lock-in your rate.

“Processing times for different lenders can range from 30 to 45 days to more than 90 days,” says Smith. “Typically, lenders will do a 30- or 45-day rate lock, so you should be consulting with your lender to determine the appropriate day to lock your loan. If you have to extend the lock or re-lock your loan, that will likely cost you more money.”

While shopping around for a refinance may take a little longer than refinancing with your current lender, the rewards can last as long as your loan.


Refinance Calculator: know how much you can save through refinancing, Calculators4Mortgages, refinance mortgage.#Refinance #mortgage


Refinance Calculator

Should I Refinance Now? Our mortgage refinance calculator tells if you’ll save money, lower your payments save on interest fees. Simply enter information like principal loan balance, and current payment and interest rates to find out if refinancing is the right thing to do now.

How to use the Refinance calculator

When using a refinance calculator, you’ll be asked to enter the following information for your current mortgage loan:

  • The original loan amount
  • Interest rate (APR)
  • Total length (repayment term): mortgage loans usually have repayment terms of 15 or 30 years.
  • Time remaining : If you have a 30 year loan, and have made payments for five years, the time remaining would be 25 years
  • Remaining principle on current loan: This is your present mortgage balance. Your monthly mortgage statement should show this information.

Now you’ll enter the refinancing terms you’re considering:

  • Amount refinanced: This is the amount you want to borrow for your new mortgage.
  • Interest rate of new mortgage: Enter the interest rate for the new mortgage
  • Term length : Enter how long you’ll have to repay the new loan. (Typically 15 or 30 years for mortgage refinancing loans).
  • Cash out amount, if any: Enter any additional cash you’re taking out, for debt consolidation / payoff, home improvement, vacations, medical expenses or whatever.
  • Closing costs, discount points, down payment amount: The refinance calculator displays an estimated amount of closing costs, not including discount points, on the next screen. You can use this estimate if you don’t know the amount of closing costs.

Use the drop-down window to select the appropriate option for paying closing costs:

  • Paid by cash or check: You’re contributing funds to cover closing costs
  • Rolled into the loan: Your refinanced mortgage amount will include closing costs.
  • Paid by Lender: Your mortgage lender pays the closing costs (but you’ll pay a slightly higher interest rate).

After clicking the “calculate” button, the first section of the next screen displays a comparison of your current and proposed mortgage amounts, interest rates, and if applicable, any cash out amount and closing costs for the new mortgage.

  1. Lauren 12, Aug, 2012

Staying with your current lender eases the refi process, and may be best if their rate is comparable to the other lenders. If you do have money to invest in closing costs, and are willing to pay for a lower rate, use the refinance calculator to determine how many months it will take before you recoup your closing costs in monthly savings and make sure there is little chance of you selling the home before that time. We wish you well in your search. One of two things will happen, you’ll either find a way to save yourself some money by refinancing now, or you’ll find yourself better prepared to take advantage of the next refinance opportunity that comes your way. Either way you win. Too many people just resign themselves to their current loan and aren’t so proactive at exploring opportunities for improving their situation. Calculators4Mortgages applauds you for being such a proactive manager of your financial affairs.

I have a april 2004 manufactured home and need refinance my current 15yr mortgage at 4.75%. I am more than 6yrs into biweekly payment and the left over amount is lower than the current value of the house. I was offered a lower rate 15yrs loan but it doesn’t save me anything and extend the period of loan till 2026 which I don’t want. The calculator doesn’t help on biweekly payents started sometime in the middle of last 6yrs. I was also offered no closing cost.Can anybody help me out with this problem. I would like to save money if I refinance. Lower payment but need to have some saving too.

We part way through both a 1st and a 2ndwith different $ amounts and time remaining. Do you have a calculator that can help us figure out if we should refi both into a new loan.

This is the best, most helpful site for getting mortgage refinancing information. Thank you!


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What Is a Streamline Refinance?

Refinance second mortgage

Mortgage Q A: “What is a streamline refinance?”

While qualifying for a mortgage refinance is generally a lot harder than it has been in the past (now that lenders actually care how your mortgage performs), there are less cumbersome options available.

In fact, many lenders offer “streamlined” alternatives to existing borrowers to lower costs and make refinancing more accessible.

Plenty of banks out there have their own “streamline refinance” programs that come with looser credit scoring requirements, easier income and asset verification, and limited paperwork.

And in some cases, you don’t even need to order an appraisal. Put simply, a streamline refinance takes a lot of the legwork (and time) out of the process, and may increase your chances of approval.

However, streamline refinances also come with their own list of requirements, namely that the refinance has a “net tangible benefit.” In other words, it should help the homeowner, not just put money in the pocket of the loan originator.

This generally means that the mortgage rate should drop by an amount that will eclipse any related fees, and/or that the loan is converted from an adjustable-rate mortgage to a fixed-rate mortgage.

Streamline Refinance Guidelines

Here s a condensed list of possible streamline refinance guidelines and rules:

  • Must be current on your existing mortgage
  • Refinance must clearly benefit the borrower
  • No cash out allowed
  • Limited income/asset verification
  • Minimal credit requirements
  • Less paperwork
  • Faster processing
  • Lower closing costs
  • No appraisal necessary

*Keep in mind that these guidelines can vary widely from bank to bank, and not every lender will offer a streamline refinance, or approve you if they do.

FHA Streamline Refinance

Perhaps one of the most popular and well-known streamline refinance options out there comes courtesy of the FHA. In fact, the FHA has permitted streamline refinances since the early 1980s. Of course, they ve become much more popular lately thanks to the mortgage crisis.

They make it easy to refinance your mortgage to a lower mortgage rate, without the need for an appraisal, many of which happen to come in low these days.

And with no credit scoring requirement and limited documentation requirements, most borrowers can qualify for a streamline refinance quite effortlessly, even if they don t have adequate income, assets, or employment. The idea here is that a borrower with smaller monthly mortgage payments is a less risky borrower, which is good for the hard-hit FHA.

There are just a handful of simple requirements necessary for approval. As long as your existing mortgage is an FHA loan and in good standing (not delinquent), and the refinance will result in a lower monthly mortgage payment (or you’re converting your ARM to a FRM), you should be good to go. The only thing you really need to worry about is the seasoning requirements, including the following:

you must have made at least six (6) payments on the FHA-insured mortgage before refinancing

six (6) full months must have passed since the first payment due date of the original mortgage

210 days must have passed from the closing date of the original mortgage

Also note that no cash out can be taken out via a FHA streamline refinance. Only rate and term refinances work here.

However, you can get your hands on a no cost refinance, meaning you won’t necessarily need to pay out-of-pocket expenses, but you ll be stuck with a higher interest rate in return.

This is common because the FHA doesn t allow lenders to roll closing costs into the new mortgage amount on a streamline refinance without an appraisal.

Finally, because no appraisal is required, the FHA streamline refinance is an excellent option for those who are underwater on their mortgages.

Tip: President Obama recently lowered mortgage insurance premium costs on FHA Streamline Refinances to help more borrowers take advantage of the record low mortgage rates currently on offer.

VA Streamline Refinance

The FHA isn’t the only one offering streamline refinances. The VA also offers a streamlined “VA loan to VA loan” refinance, known as an “Interest Rate Reduction Refinancing Loan,” or IRRRL for short.

Yes, that’s a lot of “R’s,” but a VA streamline refinance is easy to execute and can save you a lot of money now that mortgage rates are so low.

The same basic rules apply. Your refinance must result in a lower interest rate, or you must switch from an ARM to a fixed-rate mortgage, and no cash out is permitted.

The VA does not require an appraisal or a credit underwriting package, and you have the option of rolling the refinance costs into the new loan or opting for a no cost refinance.

Additionally, a Certificate of Eligibility from the VA is not required, making a refinance a snap compared to the usual process.

HARP Streamline Refinance

You may have also heard of HARP and HARP 2.0, a streamlined loan program that allows underwater homeowners to refinance their mortgage, no matter how high their loan-to-value ratio (LTV) is.

The same simple qualification requirements (or lack thereof) apply here, though your loan must be owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, and must have been sold to the pair on or before May 31, 2009.

Additionally, your current LTV must be north of 80%, which isn’t a problem for most homeowners these days.

Finally, you must be current on your mortgage at the time of refinance, with no late payments in the past six months and no more than one late payment in the preceding 12 months.

Assuming you qualify, you should be able to get your hands on a much lower mortgage rate, even with an excessively high LTV, all with limited fees and closing costs.

Is Streamlining Your Refinance the Best Deal?

While a streamline refinance may be your easiest option, it may not be the best choice for you.

Whenever you’re in the market for a refinance, it’d be wise to take the time to shop around.

That means looking beyond your current lender and/or loan type to see if there’s something better out there.

You may find a lower mortgage rate with a new lender that will justify a more lengthy qualification process.

Sure, it can be a pain to refinance your mortgage, but the savings afforded each month and over your lifetime should definitely be worth your time.


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