Essentials of Borrowing
Should You Get A Home Equity Loan When Refinancing?
Among the most economical lending solution available today are home equity loans and home equity lines of credit. Depending on your personal financial situation, some of the interest can be used as a tax deduction. They are generally flexible and generally offer you the best rates available. There are a lot of advantages to a home equity loan. However, be sure to refinance with extreme caution. There are two different types of home equity loans.
The actual loan usually has a fixed rate with a precise period of time in which the loan needs to be paid off. Also fixed is the payment. This type of loan is ideal for someone who has a precise amount in mind. When consolidating your debts, such as student loans, credit cards, car loans or doing some home improvements, a homeowner will obtain a home equity loan to consolidate their entire payments inro one easy to pay bill. Often times, this creates a lower overall monthly payment.
A more flexible option is a home equity line of credit. This is an open ended loan meaning the payment and rate usually tends to be lower and is variable. A line of credit is generally used like a credit card, with tax benefits. Interest is only paid on the portion of the line you use. The rest is available for when and if you need it. Whenever you make a payment, that portion that is applied to the principle and is then available to use again if need be. Some lenders will offer a card for easier access. This option is great for when you do need to use the money immediately or would like to have the flexibility to keep using the money without going through the loan process over and over again. If you have equity left over, when you refinance your current mortgage, often times you will be offered a home equity line of credit or home equity loan. If you have other debts that are above and beyond your original mortgage, a good way to go is a home equity loan.
You are probably wondering why you wouldn't include all of your debt in your original loan. Well, often times, in order to keep the loan amounts under 80%, debt is split into two different loans. This allows people to take advantage of the best rate available. If you are able to keep the loan amount under 80% of the home appraisal value, then you can easily avoid paying Private Mortgage Insurance, or PMI. Whenever you do not have a need for a second loan when you are refinancing, you can then just put the money towards a line of credit. It is a good thing to have, should an emergency arise. When the need arises, the money is ready for you to use. This will save you the hassle of going through the entire loan process time and time again. Another great benefit is the loan company can simply use the same credit inquiry for this loan that they used for the first loan. One note of precaution though, a line of credit usually has an annual fee attached to it.
Be sure to ask your bank about specials they may be running in order to offset the cost. Sometimes they are willing to negotiate with you so that you will take the offer. As you can clearly see, there are a lot of benefits to both a home equity loan and a home equity line of credit. Before making a decision, be sure to weigh all of your options. So that you are able to make a more informed decision, talk about the cost and ask if there are any hidden fees.
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