Q: I have a variable Home Equity Line of Credit which is at 5.8%. This seems high with all of the low interest mortgages around. I have been remodeling my home with the HELOC and still have the kitchen to re-do. Would I be better off trying to find a lower rate at another bank or credit union?
A: You should consider shopping for a better line of credit. Start with the lender who has your current one; they might offer you better terms. Please know that mortgage lenders who hold second liens (like your home equity lender) face strong market risks at the moment, and so aren't in a big hurry to offer rock-bottom rates for new offers. Talk to your existing lender, but be prepared to scour your local market for other offers.
- What is a rate and term refinance?
Homeowners have a variety of reasons for refinancing and each reason can indicate that one refinance option or another makes the most sense.
- Are ten-year fixed-rate mortgages (FRM) available anywhere?
Sure! Virtually all lenders who sell product to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac will be able to offer you mortgage with a 10-year term. However, interest rates are usually the same as the lender's 15-year offerings.
- Can I get copies of checks from a past refinance?
It's not going to be easy, that's for sure.
- Can I refinance an underwater ‘kiddie condo’?
If the home is underwater, HARP is really your only option.
- Will shopping around for a refinance affect my credit?
Credit bureaus usually treat multiple applications to different lenders as a single entry in your credit file.