Back to: January 2020


Is Refinancing Your Mortgage a Good Idea?
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There are times when it makes sense to refinance your mortgage. It is, however, important to have a clear financial objective in mind to be able to choose the most appropriate loan.

Since interest rates are at a 40-year low, switching to a lower rate may save you a lot of money – possibly thousands of dollars per year. There are penalties for paying your mortgage loan out prior to renewal, however, these could be offset by the extra money you save through a refinance.

What's your goal?
Before deciding whether or not to refinance, you need to determine what you want to accomplish. Remember, a refinance doesn't pay off the debt; it just restructures it, often at a lower interest rate and a different loan term than the current mortgage.

1- Reducing the interest expense is the most common goal of a refinance. But some homeowners also appreciate the ability to extend the loan back out to 30 years, reducing the monthly payment.

2- Debt consolidation is another goal of refinancing. If you have both a first mortgage and a home equity mortgage, combining the two mortgages into one fixed-rate mortgage levels out the payment over the loan term.

3- Getting cash from your home. The equity you have in your home can act like a savings account that you could access through a home equity loan or a cash-out refinance. This is usually done when you want to finance an important home improvement, pay for college or pay off high-interest credit card debt. Whatever your reason, this may be the right option for you.

When to refinance?
After determining your reasons for refinancing, you need to consider whether the timing and circumstances make this the right time to get a new mortgage.

You may be better off to stay with your current mortgage. For example, if your current mortgage has a high prepayment penalty or if you plan to move from your home in the next few years or when the monthly savings gained from lower monthly payments may not exceed the costs of refinancing.

As a rule of thumb, it pays to refinance if you can get an interest rate at least two percentage points lower than what you are currently paying. Asking yourself a few questions may help you determine if you can save money:

  • How much can I lower my current monthly payment? 
  • How long do I plan to stay in the house after I refinance?
  • How much will I pay in refinancing costs? 

How to refinance?
Refinancing is similar to the process you encountered when you closed on your first mortgage. It requires an application, credit check, new survey, and title search, as well as an appraisal and inspection fees. As you know, this process can be quite lengthy and expensive.

Keep in mind, however, that by refinancing you may extend the time it will take to pay off your mortgage. That said, there are many ways to pay down your mortgage sooner to save you thousands of dollars. Most mortgage products, for instance, include prepayment privileges that enable you to pay up to 20% of the principal per calendar year. This will also help reduce your amortization period (the length of your mortgage), which in turn saves you money.

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With Compliments of

Michele Vyge-Fraser
Real Estate Agent/ Associate Broker/ CNE®


Red Door Realty
1314 Martello Road
Chapter House
Halifax, Nova Scotia,
T: 902-830-6397
NovaScotiaRealEstate@gmail.com
www.RedDoorRealty.ca

Hello :) Happy August!

Our Nova Scotia Real Estate market continues to be hot! Competing offers are still the norm for good listings and our Sellers Market is continuing to drive prices up. While median prices across HRM show $119,250. and, just looking at Halifax, Dartmouth and Bedford, the median selling price for a single family home says $217,750, $350,000 - $450,000 seems to be the range in highest demand. Competing offers are driving prices up 10-15% above list and much more in some cases. Good listings are still in short supply. On the Halifax Peninsula alone there have only been 28 firm single family MLS sales since July 7, though there are currently 17 conditional sales pending and 60 single family active listings. List price continues to matter. If it isn't priced based on the most recent comparable firm sale, there is a good chance that buyers will wait for the seller to adjust the price accordingly. However, once that happens, competing offers seems to become the norm again. 

So where are our prices going? Is there an end in sight for our sellers market? I'm not seeing it yet. Ever curious about the big picture price categories, both locally and across the province,  I ran the MLS sold numbers to when our MLS data was first uploaded to a computerized system... we are still showing less than 4.5% over $500,000. in HRM and less than 3% across the province. With these stats and affordability thresholds it's not hard to see why so many people are considering moving here!  

Across HRM...
  • there are currently 1160 active MLS listings of which 949 are single family.
  • there have been 834 sales firm up since July 7 (median price $119,950.)
  • there are currently 357 conditional sales pending
  • of the 949 current active single family listings, prices range from $32,500 (a real fixer upper/possible tear done in Necum Teuch) to $6,450,000 (a glorious Waterfront Estate in Herring Cove on 115 Gill Cove)

Closer to Halifax, Dartmouth and Bedford...
  • there are currently only 392 active single family home listings
  • prices range from $80,000 (another 'real fixer upper or tear down on 8 Yorkshire Avenue in Dartmouth) to $4,995,000 (a beautiful Northwest Arm Estate on 5960 Ingliwood)
  • there have been 393 sales firm up since July 7 (median price $217,750)
  • there are currently 136 conditional sales pending

To date, since January 1, 2020, 614 of the MLS sales across Nova Scotia have sold for over $500,000 of which 134 have sold since July 7, 2020. (128 are in HRM)

Currently, MLS sales over $500,000 account for approximately 2.8% of the 237,442 multi-class MLS sales across Nova Scotia on record and approximately 4.5% of the 237442 multi-class MLS sales across HRM. 

The highest recorded MLS sale in the last 4 weeks?... is $1,889,000 (this property, in Dartmouth, was on the market for 54 days and sold for 94.5% of the list price...)

Curious about any listings or the possibility of selling? If you are ready to get back into the market or to buy your dream waterfrontage cottage or, anytime you know someone else who is, please contact me anytime! 

Happy Summer!

With Gratitude,
Michele 

 


NATIONAL MORTGAGE RATES
Term Posted
Rates*
Best
Rates*
6 Months 3.34% 3.30%
1 Year 3.59% 3.04%
2 Years 3.74% 2.89%
3 Years 3.89% 2.79%
4 Years 3.95% 2.95%
5 Years 5.34% 2.69%
7 Years 5.80% 2.99%
10 Years 6.10% 3.04%
Variable Rate 2.90%
Prime Rate ** 3.95%
*last updated: Feb 18,2020


www.RedDoorRealty.ca

Halifax Mortgage Specialist Bruce Lusby 

(902) 210-0515

http://mortgageweb.ca/BruceLusby

Halifax, Nova Scotia - updated Oct 6, 2015

Variable:

5yr @ Prime - .65% (2.05%)

HELOC @ Prime +.25% (2.95%)

Fixed:
1yr 2.29%
2yr 2.09%
3yr 2.24%
4yr 2.54%
5yr 2.54%
6yr 3.39%
7yr 3.44%
10yr 3.84%

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The material in this publication is provided for your informational purpose only and is not intended to substitute professional advice. If your property is currently listed with a Real Estate Broker, this publication is not intended as a solicitation.