Personal Finance: It’s time to refinance if you haven’t already
News from Chattanooga Times Free Press:

If you are a homeowner with a mortgage and you have not refinanced within the past couple of years, now may be the time.

Responding to recent signs of improvement in the economic environment, interest rates have been inching higher off of their historic lows. The rates on 30-year home mortgages crept above 4 percent last week after having plumbed the depths of modern memory, leading to speculation that the long decline in rates may be ending.

Perhaps, although the same prediction was proffered when the 30-year mortgage dropped to 5 percent. Nevertheless, by any objective standard, rates are so low today that any small additional relief would be immaterial. So if you have been waiting to find the bottom, or even if you refinanced within the past couple of years at a rate above 5 percent, it may pay you to lock in now.

Home financing rates this low would have been inconceivable to an earlier generation. In 1982, David Letterman debuted on NBC, gas cost 91 cents per gallon, and the rate on a 30-year single family home mortgage was 15.1 percent.

This means a homeowner who borrowed $ 100,000 then and made his last payment this month would have disgorged a whopping $ 358,000 in interest along the way. Of course, no one actually did, since most borrowers refinanced as rates receded or sold the home along the way, but the exercise is instructive when…………… continues on Chattanooga Times Free Press

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