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Second Mortgage Financing

If you are like most homeowners, you probably have a first mortgage loan on your home. Typically, such loans are for 25 to 30 years, with the monthly payments adjusted so that the loan is paid in full at the end of the term.

As you make monthly mortgage payments and the value of the home increases, your interest in the property (equity) grows. After a while, some homeowners may wish to borrow against the equity in their home to get cash, to make home improvements, to educate their children, or to consolidate personal debts. Because such loans are in addition to the first mortgage on the home, they are commonly called "second mortgage" loans.

Second mortgage loans are different from first mortgages in several ways. They often carry a higher interest rate, and they usually are for a shorter time, 15 years or less. In addition, they may require a large single payment at the end of the term, commonly known as a balloon payment.

Traditionally, second mortgage loans are offered with a fixed loan amount and a predetermined repayment schedule. Some lenders now offer lines of credit that allow you to obtain cash advances with a credit card or to write checks up to a certain credit limit. These often are called "home equity lines" because the equity in your home is collateral for the amount of credit you request. As you pay off the outstanding balance, you can reuse the line of credit during the loan period.

  • Second mortgages are different from first mortgages.
    They often carry a higher interest rate and are usually
    for a shorter period of time.

  • Traditionally, second mortgage loans are offered with a
    fixed amount and a predetermined repayment schedule.

  • Shop around and make comparisons when you are
    looking for a lender

  • Ask local banks, savings and loans, credit unions,
    or finance companies about their loan terms.

  • Be sure to understand how much your monthly
    payments will be and what they include.

Second Mortgage Articles

Frequently Asked Questions About Second Mortgages

Lines of Credit vs Traditional Second Mortgage Loans

Refinance or Modify Your Mortgage

What You Should Know About Home Equity Credit Lines

Home Equity Loans: The 3-Day Cancellation Rule

Home Equity Scams: Borrowers Beware!

Looking For The Best Mortgage: Shop, Compare, Negotiate


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