Is now a good time to make the move into your first home? Maybe you’re considering refinancing an existing mortgage to take advantage of better interest rates, but you’re unsure if it’s the right financial move?
With so many factors at play, finding a trusted source with local knowledge and experience you can count on is essential.
“People want to know whether the rates are going to stay low, and what will happen with the market. While there’s no crystal ball, the analysts I work with all suggest that interest rates will continue to remain low,” says Jodi Longley, a loan officer with CMG Financial.
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“I’m telling everyone, if you’re in a higher interest rate now and it’s beneficial to refinance, then do it, but you have a variety of factors to consider, and it’s important that we sit down and explore those. We’ll look at the pros and cons, and a few different options and see where the potential savings are.”
For example, do you plan to sell in the next few years? If so, you won’t see the benefits of a slightly lower rate. Or perhaps you’re looking at pulling out equity to pay down debts or undertake some home improvements – all of these scenarios create different variables.
“My specialty is asking the questions that will ensure you’re refinancing for the right reasons, and the more questions I ask, the more I get to know you,” Longley says, but concedes, “I’m not a typical lender. I want to educate my clients and keep them up to date with what’s going on, and how it affects them; the online lender is not going to do that.
“When you have a relationship with a lender you can work together to ensure you’re always in the right mortgage for where you are right now,” Longley adds, highlighting why it’s always a good idea to conduct an annual mortgage review with your lender.
Essentials for first-time buyers
For first-time homebuyers, Longley suggests starting the mortgage process early.
“When you’re thinking about buying a home – even if you’re just seeing what’s out there – start the lending process,” she advises. “The best way to get your offer accepted is to have pre-approval from a local lender who has strong relationships in the community and a good reputation.”