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It's been a bit since I mentioned refinancing our mortgage. We hadn't dropped the idea – it's just that there hasn't been much changed. We haven't heard anything from the mortgage specialist.

Earlier this month we decided to see if the streamlined refinance option our current lender offers would be a good deal for us. Currently their advertised rates for a 15 year loan is 3.250% (3.565% APR) and they're advertising that the fees are less if we stay with them. Curious to how much we could save, we sent in a request for a quote. We were told that it would take about 2 business days to get a response.

After not hearing anything for almost a week, we sent in another request and did get a response this time. We had to get some information for them:

  • Our Original Loan #
  • Our Homes's Current Assessment
  • What Homes are Being Sold For in Our Neighborhood

I understand the first piece of information, but aren't the second two part of the refinance process? What information do I have access to that they don't have? I would think that the lender has people hired whose jobs is to look into this stuff? Oh well…

Our Current Mortgage Situation and Our Goals for It

Since I had to give the information fairly quickly, I'm glad that I do a monthly review – it meant that I had some of that information on hand.

Here’s where we stand with the mortgage right now:

  • Total Loan Amount: $108,055.92
  • Interest Rate: 5.00%
  • Loan Term: 30 years, fixed rate

We’re also currently sending in an extra $175/month to decrease the mortgage principal even faster. What we'd like to do is to get our mortgage down to a 15 year fixed rate without greatly changing our total mortgage payments (scheduled mortgage payments plus our additional mortgage payments).

Finishing our mortgage in 15 years is a big plus for a small increase in our mortgage payment. Not having a mortgage in about half the time is extremely tempting. According to one estimate, we could save over $40,000 in interest payments over the life of the loan by cutting the mortgage in half.

Time to Look at Other Options

While I wait to just get a quote from her I'm going to look around and see if another lender can offer something reasonable. I'm starting with GoBankingRates today and see what kind of offers we can get. I'm also looking at Costco to see if our memberships get us a deal. I hope to have an update at least by the time I write the next net worth review.

Thoughts on Refinancing

How many of you have refinanced your mortgages in the last year? Did you stay with the same lender or did you go with a different one?

Photo Credit: woodleywonderworks

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About Elle Martinez

Elle Martinez helps families at Couple Money achieve financial freedom by sharing tips for reducing debt, increase income, and building net worth. Learn how to live on one income and have fun with the second..

9 comments add your comment

  1. We re-financed last year. We had been sending $200 extra a month. Re-financing to a 15-year 3.375% mortgage made the base payment go up by about $160 (so within what we were sending anyways) and increased the principle by $400 per month on top of it. So, that has proven to be quite awesome. We used the same lender. I filled out the ‘interested in a re-fi’ section on their website and my phone rang about 20 minutes later.

    • Wow; what great and fast service! That’s some big savings you guys made with the refinance. We still haven’t heard anything. I wish we can get an estimate from our lender at WF.

  2. We have also been talking about refinancing. Interest rates are really low right now and it could help us get ahead. We are booking a meeting with our broker to determine our options.

  3. great plan with the refi – rates are low and it should save you quite a bit of money!

  4. Just refi’ed a no-cost mortgage, 30 year fixed, at 3.875% (Los Angeles).

  5. We just used amerisave. They had lower rates than anywhere else we looked and gave a credit that covered our closing costs so it was an amazing deal. They do make you pay for the appraisal upfront though so if you are unsure whether your house will appraise for what you need it to you could get stuck paying for an appraisal but not getting approved.

  6. We recently refinanced with the same bank, from 5%, we are now at 3.5% on a 15 year mortgage.
    Between a 2.5% after tax cost for this loan, and a kid going into college 5 years from now, I prefer to hold off on the prepayments. We’ve saved aggressively for college, but nothing is 100%. Costs keep rising, and it would be nice to be able to handle grad school if that’s in the future.