May 25, 2012

Surviving the amortization woes

Cerritos Trails Drina Model
When you find yourself having difficulty paying for your mortgage loan, don't worry coz you're definitely not alone. In fact, at some point, all of us experience anxiety over paying the monthly amortization. Based on experience, the difficulty can actually be lessened or even the amount can be lowered with these steps, and they can help us get by.
1. Save and pay in advance to principal
Not only for rainy days when you need something to save you from having to pay the penalty but more so to have some amount to pay come mortgage anniversary. Paying a lump sum amount no matter how small it is is helpful in lowering your future payments for the property (of course holding other factors constant). If you earn extra money here and there or get that big bonus, it is wisest to save it to pay an "advance to principal." If you realize that only a small portion of the monthly amortization actually goes to paying the principal loan (in our case, only roughly 30 percent which means 70 percent are interest payments), you would appreciate more the importance of paying in advance to principal.
2. Ask for a rate reduction from the bank
I used to be passive when it comes to the interest rate that the bank impose. Well, the time of blankly staring at the bank notices on interest rates is over for me. I always ask for a rate reduction every time. I simply send an email stating why I am asking for a lower rate, and guess what - I always get our rate reduced. Cite the current inflation which gives you headache in budgeting or if you are receiving remittances where the Peso-Dollar exchange rate matters a lot to you, air your concerns over the Peso appreciating a lot making the Peso equivalent of your dollar receipts lower than it used to be. Convince the bank why they should give you a lower one. Most likely they will give in, a percent or two perhaps.
3. Budget, budget, and execute it
Avoid facing the inevitable circumstance of paying penalty by carefully guarding your budget. If you think you will be short of funds, make adjustments early on. Our bank gives us at least a week grace period, I assume other banks have that sort of allowance, so there's actually enough time to make remedies. Don't wait until the last minute before you act.
Want to read other saving tips? Check out how you can cut grocery expenses.

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