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Wednesday, February 25, 2009

How To Get The Lowest Home Rates

By Dianne Logan

Even though an economy in recession has put almost all financial dealings to a minimum, it is actually the right time to get a home loan for many reasons. If you have been planning to buy a house, then this is definitely the best time to do so with house prices at an absolute low. Secondly, home loan prices have also dropped, and if you have a regular monthly income that can easily support a loan payment, then you can actually end up saving thousands of dollars in the long run.

However, it pays to remember that even cheap home loans often turn out to be extremely costly over a long term simply because they are taken for long periods of time, and you often end up paying an amount equal to or more than the principal as interest by the time you finish off your home loan payments. Taking all steps to ensure that you get the lowest possible home loan rates can therefore end up saving you loads of money by the time you finish off paying your home loan.

Some things that will help you get the lowest home loan rates are:

A Good Credit Score: If you live in the US, then you can actually bargain for good home loan rates if you have a credit score above 680. No matter what your credit score, there is always scope for improvement, so it is advised that you actually spend some time in improving your score before applying for a home loan. The easiest way of doing this is to get your free credit report from any one of the three agencies that provide it, and correct any errors that might be present, like a wrong address, or a default that has never happened etc. Also cancel all the credit cards that you hardly use and pay all your bills on time for a month or two. Then get another free credit report and when you are sure that your score has improved as much as it can, apply for a home loan.

Try To Avail Of A Scheme: There are a number of organizations in the US like the FHA (Federal Housing Administration), VA (Veterans Administration) and the Rural Development Services that tie up with various financial institutions and banks to provide citizens with low interest home loans. Before you apply for a home loan, check out whether you are eligible for any government assisted schemes, because if you are, you can actually save thousands on fees and interest on your home loan.

Shop Around: Due to a high level of competition among lenders in the current scenario, you might find that there is a huge variation in the home loan rates offered by different lenders to the same person. Therefore, make sure that you shop around properly before finalizing a home loan. Get free quotes from as many lenders as possible and compare them. Even if the interest rates seem similar, dont forget to check all the fees and payments applicable, because this is where a lot of unscrupulous lenders are making the big bucks. You will also find that online lenders will offer you better rates than brick and mortar ones, so give preference to one provided the firm is solid, honest and reputable.

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