Friday, August 12, 2016

When Should You Refinance Your Mortgage

When Should You (1).jpg
When it comes to refinancing your mortgage, you need to determine the best possible plan and method of refinancing. At the St. Cloud Federal Credit Union, we can help you determine the most beneficial mortgage plan for you and your family.

What is Refinancing?

Refinancing a mortgage means paying off an existing loan and replacing it with a new one. Dependent on your financial situation, refinancing can save you money and give you flexibility. It can help shorten the term of your loan or help you build equity more efficiently.

When is the Best Time to Refinance?

People refinance their mortgage when you are buying a new home or property, financing a home addition, constructing a new home, or buying an investment property. People who wish to refinance their mortgages may also be looking for a lower interest rate, a shorter mortgage term, a fixed-rate mortgage (instead of an adjustable-rate mortgage), or debt consolidation.

The two most common types of refinancing include rate-and-term refinancing and cash-out financing. Understanding these two types of refinancing can help you determine if this is the best possible option for your finances. Learn more about the two most common types of refinancing in a blog by

How Can I Get More Answers about Refinancing? Is it the Best Option for Me?

The New Vanishing Mortgage program offered by the St. Cloud Federal Credit Union was established to benefit members who are approaching the completion of their mortgage and for those who may not have taken advantage of historically low rates due to fees and the hassle of applying. The Vanishing Mortgage program is also open to those who have refinanced but want even lower rates.

Personalized assistance from the Mortgage Department can help you build confidence in your mortgage and loan terms. For more information on refinancing your mortgage and the Vanishing Mortgage program, reach out to representatives from the Mortgage Department at the St. Cloud Federal Credit Union to see if you qualify and to see if you will benefit from refinancing.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

Purchasing a Home: Financial Preparation Planning

According to Gallup’s annual Economy and Personal Finance survey, 56 percent of Americans own a home and 25 percent plan to purchase one in the next 10 years. Experts say you should begin planning to buy your home a year before actually making the purchase. Having a game plan set up ahead of time may save you tons of extra time and money. Here's how you can prepare your credit and finances for your future home investment:

Start with Your Credit Score

accounting-761599_640.jpgStart with knowing where you stand and how lenders will look at you financially. Credit reports will show lenders whether you are routinely late with payments and whether you have run into serious credit problems in the past. Doing this first will give you time to work on building your credit score if necessary. Make sure you use an actual FICO score, as this is what most lenders see. Credit reports are kept by the three major agencies; Experian, Equifax, and the TransUnion. You can get a free copy of your credit reports annually from

Convert to a Conservative Budget

Downsize your current living expenses to put towards your new home purchase. Determine your budget with the amount you can afford to repay now in mind, not the maximum you're allowed to borrow. Keep in mind that life changes may come and careers might change down the road. Children, cars, and travel plans are just a few additional costs that can cut into savings, so make sure you have room for these costs in your budget.

Crush Your Debt

It breaks down to this: when you owe less money, you have more disposable income. As you begin to think about shopping for a house, think about other potential debts you have accumulated. Take the added income you have from budgeting and put it toward paying off your debt. Once you owe less on other debts, you’ll have more money to put toward your home (not to mention the boost you’ll see in your credit score). Another piece of advice while you’re getting ready for a mortgage is staying away from new debts, such as car loans or anything larger than $10,000.

Getting prepared to take out a mortgage may seem like a lot of work, but early preparation makes the entire process run much more smoothly. The American dream of owning your own home can turn into a nightmare quick if you aren’t prepared.

At St. Cloud Federal Credit Union, we can help you get that dream house and a real estate investment. Contact us today to talk with our mortgage department and find an approach that works with your lifestyle.