Now that you know what an ARM is and how it works, you may be wondering what the advantages and disadvantages are. So let’s explore that issue.
Offering adjustable rates allows lenders to transfer part of the interest rate risk from themselves to the borrower. If you get a fixed rate mortgage and the interest rate then goes up, it costs the lender money. However, if you have an adjustable rate mortgage, as the interest rate goes up, so does your payment, thus compensating the lender. Adjustable rate mortgages are particularly useful when unpredictable interest rates make fixed rate loans hard to get.
One of the main advantages of an adjustable rate mortgage is that the initial interest rate is lower than that of a fixed rate mortgage. A lower rate means lower payments, which may help you qualify for a larger loan. This is an important detail if you expect your future earnings to rise. In this case, the ARM will allow you to qualify for a larger loan amount earlier rather than later.
However, this information should only be used with care. If you use an ARM to qualify for a larger loan amount than a fixed rate would allow you and the interest rate then rises drastically or your income doesn’t rise, you may not be able to afford the larger monthly payments, thus causing you to default on your loan.
A situation in which an adjustable rate mortgage makes sense would be if you are only going to keep the house for a short period of time. If you are only planning to own your house for only a few years, the risk of the interest rate rising goes down. This means that you will get a better rate with an ARM, making it a good choice. However, if you plan on staying in your home for a long period of time, a fixed rate may be a better option.
The lesson here is to have a plan. Know what your goals are in purchasing a home and plan for all eventualities. Do your research when shopping for an ARM and consider the worst-case scenario.
I am writing this letter of recommendation,because I called Havasu Realty about a home I had driven by in Lake Havasu City and wanted to see the inside. Suzan James just happened to be on the phone desk that day. She said she could show me the home that afternoon. That was my introduction to Suzan, who showed me a dozen or more homes over the next few weeks.
I explained that I was looking for a fixer-upper because I could probably get more house for my money. She walked me through some homes I'm sure she would rather not have gone through, but with a sense of humor made me feel comfortable looking for my dirty fixer-upper.
I have to say that by the time I found my home I felt very secure talking to Suzan about older homes. She explained how she worked with her husband, who is a contractor, so she could point out things to watch out for in buying an older home.
Finding Suzan on the other end of the phone that day was a blessing, she's a real trooper, a ray of sunshine.
I feel as if I've found a new friend here in Havasu. Thank you Suzan.