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Definitive guide to select a lender for home refinance
Definitive Guide to Select a Lender for Home Refinance
As you choice a lender for a home refinance, it will be significant to find a trustworthy company that
will provide you with high-quality service and competitive rates.
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The key items to consider when selecting a mortgage lender are costs and service. Understanding
the terms of your loan (the amount of the monthly payment, the number of years until it's paid off, the
interest rate, fees, whether or not a penalty is accessed if you pay off the loan early) will provide
insight into the various costs. Conversations with your prospective lender or mortgage broker and a
review of the good faith estimate the lender provides will enable you to make a reasonable
The good faith estimate is a legally mandated document designed to protect borrowers by requiring
lenders to provide standardized disclosure of the costs associated with a loan. This written estimate
details the fees you will be required to pay at closing, including the cost for all points, processing,
legal fees, filing and closing fees.
While the law does not dictate the price that each lender charges for the various services they offer,
the good faith estimate does provide a useful tool for comparison shopping. One loan provider may
charge more for legal fees and less for filing fees. Another may have lower overall fees but charge a
higher interest rate. A careful review of good faith estimates from the lenders you are considering will
help you find the best deal.
How to compare mortgage brokers when refinancing
Not all mortgage brokers are as qualified or reliable as others, so this requires you to compare the
services offered by a few brokers before picking one.
To start, look for ASIC registrations and Mortgage & Finance Association of Australia (MFAA) or the
Finance Brokers Association of Australia (FBAA) membership. The former is a prerequisite for
mortgage brokers to operate in Australia, and ASIC enforces a strict level of education and
experience amongst the nation’s mortgage brokers. MFAA or FBAA memberships show that the
broker in question follows high standards in regard to legal requirements and that they offer thorough
transparency in everything they do.
The number and quality of lenders on the panel of one mortgage broker is not the same as
another’s, so you will need to look into this. When you have narrowed your choice down to a few
mortgage brokers, you can use feedback and online reviews from previous customers to make a
A good mortgage broker should use technology to find the best deals for you, which normally
requires the use of suitable software. Make sure your broker takes the time to explain all the details
of your new loan, from interest rates and costs to fees and features. Expect high levels of customer
service even if you’re not paying your broker—because someone is.
Refinancing requires you to look for a home loan all over again, so if you want to save some time
you should think about using the services of a mortgage broker. A good mortgage broker brings
expertise to the table and can also help you save money.
Should I Use a Mortgage Broker to Refinance?
Underwriting guidelines, profit targets and cash-flow levels vary from bank to bank. All of these
factors have an influence on mortgage rates, so interest rates can vary dramatically from one
institution to the next. In order to purchase or refinance a home, you must provide a lender with your
tax returns, bank statements and other personal information. The application process is often
lengthy and it is even more time-consuming if you shop around for rates. If you work with a broker,
you simply provide all your information to that individual. The broker then does the legwork and
scours the nation for the best rates. You may end up finding the best deal at a bank that you never
would have come across without the help of a broker.
Mortgage contracts are complex. Some banks offer reduced interest rates but offset that by
increasing the closing costs. Other banks offer teaser rates that regularly reset during the course of
the loan. Early payoff penalties and processing fees can add to the total cost. The average
consumer may find it difficult to compare contracts that include so many different stipulations and
options. As a lending professional, a broker has the expertise to compare these offerings and locate
the best deal.
Converting Between Adjustable-Rate and Fixed-Rate Mortgages
While ARMs often start out offering lower rates than fixed-rate mortgages, periodic adjustments can
result in rate increases that are higher than the rate available through a fixed-rate mortgage. When
this occurs, converting to a fixed-rate mortgage results in a lower interest rate and eliminates
concern over future interest-rate hikes.
Conversely, converting from a fixed-rate loan to an ARM can be a sound financial strategy in a
falling-interest-rate environment. If rates continue to fall, the periodic rate adjustments on an ARM
result in decreasing rates and smaller monthly mortgage payments, eliminating the need to refinance
every time rates drop. With mortgage interest rates rising, on the other hand, as they have begun to
do, this would be an unwise strategy.
Converting to an ARM, which often has a lower monthly payment than a fixed-term mortgage, may
be a good idea for homeowners who don't plan to stay in their home for more than a few years. If
interest rates are falling, these homeowners can reduce their loan's interest rate and monthly
payment, but they won't have to worry about interest rates rising in the future because they won't be
there that long.