What are Mortgage Points? – A Complete Guide

We all wish to own a residence of our own, but with each passing day, it’s becoming difficult. Buying a house in the present time isn’t as easy as it was in the past. House prices and mortgage rates are increasing, and the trend will continue in the coming years. So, it’s better to save oneself through mortgage points in advance. These points reduce the rate of a mortgage.

If you don’t plan on buying a house immediately, you could invest in mortgage points and keep them safe. Later on, when you decide on purchasing a property, these points will come in handy. However, before making any decisions, understand the concept of mortgage points. Whether you are a first-time buyer or not, you must know how these points can be beneficial in the long run and why you need them.

Understanding Mortgage Points

In simple words, mortgage points represent the money you pay in advance for your house. Paying upfront allows you to save cash in the future because the overall interest rate decreases for each point you buy. One can say that it is similar to prepaying a specific interest on the upcoming mortgage.

We all know that with each passing year, things get more expensive. The same goes for lands. Since the average value of land will increase, it affects the interest rate. Instead of paying a heftier sum in the future, you can avail the opportunity to get mortgage points and trim the cash you owe to your lender.

Whether you opt for a reverse mortgage or any other loan, having additional mortgage points always comes in handy. According to the experts at All Reverse Mortgage, INC. (https://reverse.mortgage/how-does-it-work), “the number of funds from a reverse mortgage is based on the age of the borrower, home value, and current interest rate.” Thus, when you use these discount points, you will need to pay a lower amount in the future.

How do Mortgage Points Work?

With the help of mortgage points, a borrower can buy down the interest rate. Each point costs 1 percent of the total amount you borrow. For example, if someone borrows $400,000, a single point costs $4000.

There isn’t any limit to how many points you can buy. Someone can buy two points, a half point, or even in fractions.

On average, a single point will lower the interest rate by 0.25 percent. Therefore, if the interest rate is 6 percent, having one mortgage point will reduce it to 5.75 percent. All the points you purchase are written on the loan estimate document and the closing disclosure.

Types of Mortgage Points

We come across two kinds of mortgage points. The first is origination points, paid to lenders when you originate or start processing a home loan. A single origination costs 1 percent of the total loan amount, but your lender can charge for more.

The other type of mortgage point is discount points are prepaid interest. Paying for these points at the start allows you to pay the remaining amount at a lower interest rate. So in the coming years, you owe lesser money.

The main difference between origination and discount points is that the former doesn’t impact the interest rate. Still, sometimes reduced origination points result in high-interest rates.

Finding the Breakeven Point

Mortgage points reduce the overall interest rate. So it comes in handy for people who wish to pay less afterward. When individuals purchase more discounts or mortgage points at the start, they save themselves from paying a massive amount in the future.

However, that doesn’t mean you can buy as many points as you wish. Before deciding on how many points you require, find the break even. That is how long it will take you to pay for the entire loan. You need to find the exact number of points to get maximum profit. After all, it is not a wise decision to end up exhausting all your savings on mortgage points.

When you wish to find the break-even, take the total point’s cost and divide it by the amount you save on your monthly payment. The result will show how long it will take for a mortgage point’s cost to equal interest savings.

What is the Ideal Time to Buy Points?

Most experts recommend buyers buy points only when they can break even in 36 months or less. Buying these points is useless if someone plans to relocate in less than a year. You can only derive benefits from mortgage points when you plan to stay in a place for a long time.

So think wisely about your long-term plans before spending a fortune on discount points. Furthermore, the deduction rate will vary according to the market and lender’s choice. There is no fixed value for any period.

The best time to buy mortgage points is when you start processing a loan. It will reduce the overall interest rate and help you attain tax benefits.