What You Need to Know about Variable Rate Mortgages
We all know that the mortgage market all around the world is not in the best of shape right now. However, it is not completely frozen. There are still individuals securing mortgages in Australia and all around the world. And, as always, they have been given two mortgage options to choose from. One is the variable rate mortgage and the other is the fixed rate mortgage.
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The fixed rate mortgage is a mortgage where the interest rate and the payment stay the same throughout the life of the mortgage. That means your payment of $600 per month is going to be $600 per month at the end of the loan. But the variable rate mortgage is an entirely different beast.
The variable rate mortgage
The variable rate mortgage is the type of mortgage where the rate will change throughout the life of the loan. Actually, it will increase.
This is the type of loan that individuals will take because they cannot afford the high payment of a fixed rate mortgage from the very beginning. They like the lower payment in the beginning because they’re pretty sure that they will be able to pay the higher rate in the future due to pay raises, career changes, etc.
Some blame the variable rate mortgage for the mortgage situation throughout the world. Individuals took out variable rate mortgages and were not able to make the payments when the rates increased. Although this may be true for some, it is not true for all. There are plenty of individuals who were able to pay their variable rate mortgages. The trick, however, is making sure that you are able to handle the increased payment. If you can handle the increased payment, you are avoiding or reducing a balloon payment at the end of the loan. This is something that tends to be a part of fixed rate mortgages. A balloon payment is a lump sum payment at the end of the loan and some individuals simply refinance that part of the loan or they may refinance the entire home. A variable rate mortgage can help you minimize the impact of a balloon payment.
So how can you determine if you’re able to handle it?
Well, think about how much you can afford now. Could you almost afford a fixed rate mortgage? If so, then there is a chance you will be fine when the rate increases. However, it is hard to tell what is going to happen in the future. The future is very unpredictable. But if you stay on top of things, you should be okay. This means familiarizing yourself with the loan. This means knowing when the rate is going to increase so that you can be prepared. When you are prepared, you can cut corners where you need to cut corners and you can ensure that your income flow is what you need it to be when the time comes.
Should you do it?
Whether or not you take a variable rate mortgage is up to you. No one can tell you otherwise. Just make sure that you understand everything there is to understand about the loan. It is those who don’t understand the loans that really mess up in the end, but those who do understand are the ones who are able to adapt to the changes that occur.