Experienced Refinancing Advice

by The Voice of Experience

Refinancing Advice from an experienced homeowner... Hi Kate, Having refinanced multiple properties over the last 25 years, there are many questions to be asked of the lender, however, the best place to start is with those that I have stated.


The most important question to ask a lender when refinancing a mortgage is what the interest rate(s) will be on the loan for both 15 and 30 year fixed rate loans. This includes not just the simple stated interest rate and term, but the rate adjusted for any expenses included in the processing of the loan.

As a general rule of thumb, unless you can save money on your monthly payment, there is no reason to refinance your existing note.

After determining that the interest rate is competitive and acceptable, you must ask what the closing costs on the loan will be, when they are payable and whether all or part of this expense can be financed as part of the loan.

Without a thorough understanding of the costs of the loan, you can't compare one lender to another accurately.

Low interest rates are often negated by high expenses or points and can make the low rate look more attractive than it is without full analysis.

Finally, you must ask how long it will take to process your loan and how long the interest rate can be locked in or fixed from the date of the original rate quote until the loan is actually closed. If the rate is only locked in for a short period and is subject to an increase in the interest rate, you do not have a good quote.

Lock in periods should be at least 30 if not 60 days in length. Short lock in periods suggest the possibility of bait and switch tactics and should be avoided.

Experienced Refinancing Advice

Dear Voice of Experience,

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