There are many reasons why you might want to refinance your home. You could be trying to get a co-signer, such as a parent, off the mortgage. You could be trying to refinance for more than you owe, to get some cash in the bank. By far the most common reason to get a home refinance is to lower monthly mortgage payment. Regardless, you're going to have to do some prep work.
Get Your Credit in Order
A refinance generally occurs after your credit score has improved. Even if you've been making your payments on time to your bank for a long time, this may not matter to them; they want to see your actual score improve. They also want to see reduced amounts of debt.
If your credit is in order, you're a lower risk candidate. From there, they can offer you better interest rates on your mortgage loan.
Put Together Your Financial Documents
In many ways, a refinancing is just like getting a mortgage. You're going to need to compile your financial documents all over again: your pay stubs and tax returns for the last few years, in addition to relevant bank statements.
Many of the restrictions for a mortgage are still going to apply. If your income has gone down, you may no longer meet the debt-to-income requirements. This could hold you back from getting a refinancing. You can ask your mortgage loan officer about the current requirements for the loan before attempting a refinance.
Compare Different Companies
You don't have to get a refinance with the same company you got your mortgage through. In fact, often it's detrimental. Instead, you can shop around to get the lowest possible rates. Don't worry: it will all look like a single credit pull to your credit report.
When comparing rates, don't forget to also compare the loan terms. A 15-year loan is a very different beast from a 20-year loan. If you want to pay off your mortgage faster, you may be able to consolidate your loan into fewer months. If you just want lower costs, you could extend your loan, turning a 10-year loan into a 30-year loan again.
By refinancing your home, you can improve your own financial agility and liquidity by lowering your interest rates and your monthly payment. If you don't yet have the credit or income needed to refinance your loan, you can begin working on it now.
For more information, contact your local home refinancing services.