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Refinancing gives homeowners a chance to take out a new loan, either simply to cover the first mortgage at a better rate with lower monthly payments or to finance home improvement and other large expenses. Some homeowners even refinance to cover a first and second mortgage, to roll both loans into one.
Also, homeowners purchasing a vehicle may wish to use cash-out refinancing. Home loans generally come at a much lower rate than the ones found when financing a car. If you refinance and close a loan that repays the first mortgage as well as the price of a car, you have not only rolled two payments into one significantly lower monthly payment, but bought the car at a much lower interest rate. This process will have saved your household money both monthly and in the long run.
As a general rule, most people claim the best time to refinance is when rates have dropped 2% or more since you closed your first mortgage. However, refinancing may still be worth the trouble for as low as 1.5% or 1% difference. Whether or not going through the loan process is advisable for less than a 2% drop depends on your existing loans. If you have an adjustable rate mortgage and are worried about how the rates will move in the future, the added security of a fixed rate alone may make refinancing worthwhile.