Second mortgages are nothing new to most Canadian homeowners; however, not everyone has an equal understanding of what a second mortgage really is and how it can benefit them. For starters, a second mortgage is a secured loan with the security being the home equity. It is a type of home loan that allows homeowners to tap into their home equity.
Second Mortgages Come in Different Forms
Do you know that there are different types of second mortgages? As a loan product, a second mortgage can be accessed as a lump sum in the form of a home equity loan, or as a revolving line of credit in the form of a HELOC.
Most Canadians get a second mortgage to help them consolidate debt. By using a second mortgage to pay off high-interest debts, they save on interest as well as make payments easier to manage for themselves. Another common use for a second mortgage is to finance home upgrades or home renovations. By doing this, a homeowner can significantly increase the value of his or her home and effectively make the debt pay for itself.
Your Home is On the Line if You Apply for a Second Mortgage
Because this type of loan products uses your home equity as collateral to the lender, the lender is entitled to take the collateral in the event that you fail on your obligation to pay. If you are sure that you can pay, though, this loan product offers significantly lower interest than unsecured loans.
There are Flexible Payment Options
Do you know that some types of second mortgages allow you to make interest-only payments? This gives you more room to maneuver with your finances such as when you use the second mortgage to pay for renovations to increase your home’s value, pay only the interest, and pay the loan after you sold your home for a much higher price.
Your Home Equity Can Be Used for Lots of Things!
Need money for an investment opportunity? Use your home equity! Have expensive tuition? Pay that with your home equity! These are just a few of the ways that you can leverage your home equity to make your life easier.
You Can Borrow A Lot or a Little
The amount that you can borrow is based on the equity you have on your home. If you’ve built huge home equity and need a lump sum, then get a home equity loan. If you need recurring smaller amounts for a period of time, then a HELOC is for you. These loans allow you to borrow 60-85% of your home equity depending on other factors.
Borrowing Isn’t Free
Because borrowing from your home equity requires paperwork and other processes, there are fees that you have to pay. The fees can vary from lender to lender so it is best to ask around before you make a decision. Don’t forget to ask about early payment fees as well.
Interest Rates Vary Too
Depending on the type of second mortgage you go for, the interest payments can vary by as much as thousands of dollars because of the difference in interest rates. If you can talk to a mortgage broker who is connected with a lot of lenders, you stand a better chance of getting the best interest rate.