- Put down a good down payment. You will be financing less after a good down payment, and that will make a considerable difference on the amount of your monthly payment. 20% down is the best!
- Always check the annual percentage rate (APR) at several banks, including mortgage brokers. Make sure you are getting the best deal. Compare costs for closing and fees as well to be sure you have the best deal.
- Fixed rates may look more expensive to you at first, but the lower starting rates in adjustable rate mortgages can balloon over time and cost you much more.
- A Federal Housing Authority (FHA) Loan can be a good deal for those who have little cash. They only require 3% down and the loans are insured.
- The overall cost of your loan is the most important figure. Loans taken for longer terms will cost more in interest; your disclosure figure will tell you the amount. Weight your ability to pay monthly against the cost of the whole loan.
- You will have to insure your home for a mortgage. The usual route is to have Private Mortgage Insurance, but this is a bit higher than Lender-paid Insurance. This insurance the lender will pay. Your interest rate will be slightly higher for this savings.
- At closing still be aware. Some lenders will inundate you with junk fees. Stand your ground. Ask what each fee is for and to whom it will be paid. If the fee is generic (like administration or processing fees) fight to have them removed.
- Consider refinancing when interest rates come down. Just be sure to know what the closing costs will be, and it is best to keep the new loan several years to make the change worth it. Always consider what the overall cost of each loan is, however, to make sure the savings on a lower interest rate for a longer loan term is not more than your present loan. TIP: Go to LendingTree.com and get up to 4 offers for a home loan and compare!
- Pay off your mortgage by 65.
- If that is only possible by downsizing, do it.
- Don’t take out equity loans that will increase your mortgage unless absolutely necessary.
- Make double payments whenever you can to save time and interest.
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