Paying regular additional payments toward the loan principal will provide enormous returns. Borrowers accomplish this goal in several different ways. Paying a single extra payment once per year is likely the simplest to track. Of course, some folks will not be able to swing such an enormous extra payment, so dividing an extra payment into 12 extra monthly payments is a great option too. Another very popular option is to pay half of your payment every other week. The effect here is that you will make one extra monthly payment each year. Each option produces different results, but each will significantly shorten the length of your mortgage and lower the total interest paid over the duration of the loan.
Some people can't manage any extra payments. But remember that most mortgages allow you to make additional payments at any time. Any time you get some extra money, consider using this provision to pay an additional one-time payment on your principal. If, for example, you were to receive a very large gift or tax refund just a few years into your mortgage, paying a few thousand dollars into your home's principal will reduce the period of your loan and save a huge amount on mortgage interest over the life of the loan. For most loans, even this small amount, paid early in the mortgage, could offer huge savings in interest and length of the loan.
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