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Refinancing could save you thousands – and give you greater flexibility

 

Reducing the interest you pay on your mortgage could help you save thousands of dollars in interest over the period of your loan. As there’s plenty of competition in the home loan sector, it could be worth looking around for a lower rate.

What is refinancing?

Refinancing is the process of replacing an existing loan with a new one. When it comes to home loans, it means your existing home loan is paid off and replaced with a new one. This is different from a second mortgage, where you draw on the equity you have built up in your home.

How can it help me save?

If you were paying 5.37 per cent interest on a principal and interest home loan of $600,000 for a 25 year term. Your monthly principal and interest payments per month will total $3,648.00. If you swapped to a mortgage at a lesser rate of 5.24 per cent, however, you’d pay just $3,602 a month. Over 25 years, that saving each month would add up to 13,800 in total savings.

Another savings option when refinancing is to choose a loan with a lower interest rate but continue with the same monthly payments as you were making on the higher rate. This approach will see you pay less interest and pay your mortgage off faster.

Alternatively, refinancing can help save money by consolidating debt from high-interest credit cards or personal loans into a single home loan with a lower rate of interest.

 Features to consider

Most mortgages offer a number of features and benefits. If you’re considering refinancing, it’s a good idea to think about which features are important to you before starting a search for a lower interest rate.

  • Variable rate or fixed rate. A fixed rate gives you more certainty over the longer term. A variable rate fluctuates with the market, so you’ll save when it’s down but there’s always a risk it will rise. (In January 1990, for example, the Australian home loan interest rate reached an all-time high of 17.5 per cent.)
  • Offset account. Cash in hand can be offset against your loan balance until you need to spend it, potentially saving interest.
  • A line of credit. If you have a lot of equity in your home, a lender might be prepared to offer you a relatively inexpensive line of credit secured against the property.
  • Repayment flexibility. Repaying a loan fortnightly rather than monthly can make it easier to fit in your budgeting plans.
  • Early pay out. You may want the option of paying a loan out early with minimal penalty.

Weighing up the costs

There can be costs associated with refinancing and it’s important to factor these in to your decision-making. For example, if you took out your loan before 30 June 2011, the lender might be able to charge you an exit fee for terminating the loan ahead of schedule. If yours is a fixed-rate mortgage, you might have to pay a break fee.

For a new mortgage, you may have to pay an establishment fee and the ongoing administration fees could be higher than you’re currently paying. And if your loan has redraw facilities, there may be a charge each time you take money out of your account.

Do the maths

You can use an online mortgage calculator to work out what repayments will be for different loan amounts at different interest rates.

You can also compare fees and charges to ensure they won’t offset any savings in interest over the life of a loan. The Australian Security & Investment Commission’s MoneySmart website has a useful mortgage switching calculator that can help you assess overall costs. 

A broker can help

Refinancing can be a serious financial decision with a number of variables to consider. A good broker can help establish the type of loan that may work best for you, how much you can borrow and any extra features you want. They can then gather information from many different lenders and help assess the costs and benefits associated with each loan.

As well as doing the legwork for you, they can guide you through the refinancing process and apply their knowledge and understanding of mortgages to help you achieve the best outcome if you decide to go ahead.

This article provides general information only and may not reflect the publisher’s opinion. None of the authors, the publisher or their employees are liable for any inaccuracies, errors or omissions in the publication or any change to information in the publication. This publication or any part of it may be reproduced only with the publisher’s prior permission. It was prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Please consult your financial adviser, broker or accountant before acting on information in this publication.

Make it happen

The staff at MAKE Finance Group are experienced and dedicated to providing our clients with exceptional levels of advice and service.

As a full service finance broker, we can save you time and stress as we negotiate with Banks and Financiers on your behalf. Whether it is asset or equipment finance, business finance and advice or even a home loan, we will go to the market on your behalf and find the best possible deal available.

Let us worry about the financials, as we make it happen for you.

Why Partner with Us?

The staff at MAKE Finance Group are experienced and dedicated to providing our clients with exceptional levels of advice and service.

MAKE Finance Group holds sought after commercial lending accreditations and access to a substantial panel of lenders for both Equipment and Business Finance.

As a finance broker MAKE Finance Group saves you time and stress as we negotiate with Banks and Financiers on your behalf. This allows you to keep focused on your business while we do the finance work.

This ensures you receive the best offers with the objective of saving money and increasing profitability.

Testimonials

Here is what a couple of our clients have said about MAKE Finance Group.
  • Geoff at MAKE Finance Group made the process of purchasing an investment property a seamless process. Thanks for your patience Geoff. I would highly recommend Geoff and his team at MAKE for all your finance needs. Cathy, Warrnambool

  • Geoff and the team at MAKE Finance were unbelievably helpful when we needed to refinance our business loan. After a stressful and confusing ordeal with our existing lender, Geoff made re-financing so easy, and it tool very little work from our end to sort everything out. We are so happy with everything sorted and not having to worry about our finance arrangements. We would encourage anyone with any financing needs to go and see Geoff and the team at MAKE Finance, thanks Geoff! Philip and Jenni, Holbrook

  • Thank you to the team at MAKE Finance Group, for helping me purchase my first truck. I cannot thank them enough as they went above and beyond all my expectations and made the whole process easy and stress free, I would highly recommend them to anyone. Rob, Canberra

  • Applying for a business loan (direct through a Bank) was becoming a stressful and difficult task for us as everything had to be discussed over the phone followed by numerous paperwork. Geoff at MAKE Finance Group was our savior. Your personalised service made the application for our business loan & business vehicle loan so easy. We now operate a very successful business & we could not have done this without you. We love your work! Lloyd & Kristy Franchisee of Jim’s Mowing Wodonga East

  • “MAKE Finance Group were an absolute pleasure to deal with. Right from the very beginning, even when we were just asking questions as to how home loans work and how much we could afford, they made the process incredibly easy and put everything into terms that we could understand. There’s a lot involved with buying your first home, but it felt effortless with the superb help from both Jess & Geoff. MAKE Finance Group definitely come highly recommend from us – thanks guys!” Sophie & Zach, Albury

  • “Buying a new car was a big deal for me as I had a very strong love for my only car of 10 years.  I approached MAKE Finance Group to help me source a loan for my new car, and they made me feel 100% positive about making the change, as the process that they followed to obtain the loan was flawless. They came to me which I hugely appreciated, everything was in order and all follow ups and questions were answered without hesitation. I cannot recommend them enough for their professional and friendly service.” Stephanie, Albury

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