6 Common Mortgage Mistakes

6 Common Mortgage Mistakes


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It’s funny what you can learn from a block party. Here in Kenosha County, we wind down from the long commute into Illinois for 15 to 30% higher wages, close the street occasionally, bring out the BBQs, and have a fine time getting to know our neighbors on the weekends. One participant, Dodie from Hawaii, was visiting her friends on the street. When asked what she does, replied, “I’m a mortgage broker.” Somewhere in the conversation, she told us about the 6 common mortgage mistakes.

Dodie suddenly took on a serious expression. This, we realized, was important to her.

First, Adjustable Rate Mortgages (ARMs) have been one of the 6 common mortgage mistakes. Many people took out ARMs that shouldn’t have.  They tried to buy as much house as they could. The rates were low and fixed for five to seven years and then the rates spiked and the homeowner was unable to pay the new mortgage payments some $500 per month higher. ARMs can be great if you plan to live in the house less than five years. Longer than that, get a fixed rate for 15 to 30 years.

Second, let the bank assume the risk. When you take out a mortgage for thirty years, you want to bet that interest rates are going higher and the bank who borrows short and lends long to you will face the interest rate risk. You also want to have the ability to refinance. If interest rates go down substantially, you can save a lot of money by paying off the old mortgage and taking out a new lower rate mortgage. BTW, suppose you started with a 30-year mortgage and three years later, you want to refinance. One of the 6 common mortgage mistakes would be to choose another 30 year mortgage. You can choose a 27-year or something less.

Third, know that your credit history has an effect on the interest rate you pay. The lowest rate right now may be 3.50%, but if your credit history is spotty, you will pay more than 3.50%. Take a look before you seek a mortgage by pulling your FICO Credit report and repairing any errors. Late payments are killers of your credit score.

Fourth, once you have the loan, try to pay something extra on the loan. If your loan payment is $1,013.00, for example, you could pay $1,100 and the loan will get paid off faster saving you interest.  Not identifying where the extra money is to go is a big mistake. You want the extra to go to reducing the principal and you should say so in the memo area. Without proper identification, the extra money could go to reducing next month’s interest.

Fifth, always add your account number to your payment. Without that number in the memo space, the payment could be added to the wrong account, another of the 6 common mortgage mistakes..

Sixth, know the difference between recurring payments and monthly drafts. If you set up a recurring payment, your mortgage company will automatically bill your bank for the latest payment. It may change each year because of taxes and insurance. A monthly draft will be the same each month until you change it. If your mortgage changes, your monthly draft could be under or over the correct amount.

Dodie paused. Our mouths were hanging open. She realized she had given us too much information. “Hey,” she said, “Enough about work. Who’s ready for some ribs and potato salad?”

Kelbry Properties LLC is Kenosha County, Lake County’s and Mchenry County’s premier real estate solutions company. Since our inception, we have been helping homeowners along with improving communities in each and every city we work in.

Through our extensive knowledge of the business, network of resources, and years of expertise, we are able to assist homeowners with a wide variety of real estate problems. We pride ourselves on our reputation for working one-on-one with each customer to handle their individual situations.

With the ability to directly purchase homes and make cash offers, we can create an extremely fast, and hassle-free transaction.

Call us today at 224-321-5300

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