Getting a Second Mortgage

A second mortgage is a loan that is secured by the equity in your home. When you obtain a second mortgage loan the lender will place a lien on your house. This lien will be recorded in 2nd position after your primary or 1st mortgage lender’s lien, hence the term second mortgage. A second mortgage is also sometimes referred to as a home equity loan. There is no difference between a home equity loan and a second mortgage. These are just two different terms for the same subject. A second mortgage can either be a fixed-rate loan or an adjustable-rate credit line. Interest rates and loan program terms will vary from lender to lender so it is important to shop around and compare before committing to any one offer.

A second mortgages are ideal when you just want to tap into your equity, plan to move soon, or are unsure about the amount you want to borrow. Another plus of a second mortgage loan is that the interest you pay back on the loan may be tax deductible. Consult your tax advisor regarding your personal situation but in most cases the interest is 100% fully deductible as long as the combined loan to value of your 1st and 2nd mortgage do not exceed the value of your home.

Loan proceeds from a second mortgage loan can be used for just about anything. Many consumers take out 2nd mortgage loans to consolidate debt, do home improvements or pay for their kids college education. Whatever you decide to do with your loan proceeds it is important to remember that if you default on your payment you can lose your home so you will want to make sure that you are taking the loan out for a worthwhile purpose.

A second mortgages aren’t for everyone. You should weigh the cost of PMI and payments when choosing your financing options. Borrowing more than 80% of your home’s value will subject you to private mortgage insurance. Your monthly payments should also be a factor in your decision. By taking out equity when refinancing your home, you will have a lower payment than if you had both a mortgage and 2nd mortgage payment. Also, if you refinance in the future, you will have to pay off your 2nd mortgage.

History of Mortgages

Most people know what a mortgage is, due to the fact that many people have one. But, do you know how the mortgage itself came about? Here is some basic history on the mortgage and where it came from:

In the beginning, a mortgage was just a conveyance of land for a fee. The buyer paid the seller a set rate, with no interest, and the seller would sign over the land to the buyer. There were usually conditions that had to be met before the land would be the property of the buyer, just like today, but usually it was based upon the assumption that the land would produce the money to pay back the seller. So, a mortgage was written due to this fact, and the mortgage stayed in effect no matter if the land produced or not.

But this old arrangement was very lopsided in that the seller of the property, or the lender who was holding the deed to the land, had absolute power over it and could do whatever they liked, which included selling it, not allowing payment, refusing payoff, and other issues which caused major problems for the buyer, who held no ground at all. With time, and blatant abuse of the mortgage system, the courts began to uphold more of the buyer’s rights so that they had more to stand on when it came to owning their land. Eventually, they were allowed to demand the deed be free and clear upon the payoff of the property. There were still steps taken to ensure that the seller still had enough rights to keep their interest safe and make sure that their money was paid.

In the U.S., some states have created their own version of the mortgage, which is why they are referred to as “lien states”. In England and Wales, the Law of Property Act of 1925 created a close parallel to the U.S.’s stance on mortgages. In 1934, mortgages began to be widely used again in the U.S., and the Federal Housing Administration helped to lower the down payments on homes to make it easier for buyers to purchase a home. During that time, around 40% of people in the United Sates owned homes. Now, that number is closer to 70%, due to the lower interest rates.

Although mortgages today have evolved into many different forms, they are still basically the same essential contract that they were in the beginning. Now, there are many more laws and regulations to help protect the buyer, seller, and creditor. There are also many different ways to lock in a low interest rate, you just need to talk to your mortgage broker about what the rates are now and what kinds of programs they offer to keep those interest rates low throughout the life of your loan.

Confidence In Variable Rate Mortgages On The Increase

According to a recent report consumers confidence in variable rate mortgage products is on the increase in the UK, following a substantial period of consumers tending to shy away from variable rate products, preferring instead to opt for more stable, yet more expensive, fixed rate deals. The series of five interest rate hikes between August 2006 and July 2007 resulted in many homeowners trying to remortgage to fixed rate deals in order to try and avoid the effects of further interest rate rises, as well as resulting in first time buyers opting for fixed rates to avoid the pitfalls of rising repayments during the first few years of mortgage repayments.

However, since July of this year the Bank of England has kept interest rates firmly on hold at 5.75%, making it latest announcement to keep rates stable just last week. It is thought that part of the reason for the bank’s decision to keep rates on hold is the possible of effects of the global credit crunch upon the UK’s economy, resulting in the Bank of England taking a wait and see stance. Another reason for keeping rates on hold for the moment, state experts, is that CPI inflation is now within the government’s target of 2%, coming in at 1.8%, which is its lowest in a year.

Predictions from analysts and economists that the Bank of England will not raise interest rates again for the remainder of the year has seen renewed interest in variable rate mortgages from consumers in the UK, with many breathing a sigh of relief over the fact that repayments are unlikely to be affected by further interest rate rises this year. This renewed interest has been further fuelled by additional speculation that interest rates may even fall by the end of this year, with many economists expecting – or urging – the Bank of England to cut interest rates. Many are now expecting rates to fall by at least a quarter point by the end of the year.

Interest in fixed rate mortgages peaked recently, as homeowners and first time buyers struggled to find a solution to the problem of rising repayments resulting from the hike in interest rates. However, some experts have even predicted that interest rates could fall back to around 5% by the end of next year, so many consumers may want to avoid tying themselves into more expensive fixed rate deals under fears that they may end up paying way over the odds in six or twelve months’ time.