How to refinance a personal loan? If you find another loan with a lower interest rate than your current one, refinancing is a great way to enhance your financial situation. Is the refinance magical like that? Before jumping into anything new, you have to grasp deeply the information surrounding it. To figure out what you should do, visit Hanfincal and keep reading this article now.
1. What is refinancing a personal loan?
Every borrower is concerned about the interest rate. In some cases, the loan is not a problem; however, the high-interest rate can be fatal to the borrowers’ financial health.
Refinance a personal loan is that you apply for a new loan – either with the same lender or with a different one – and then use the funds you receive to pay off your old loan. After that, you’ll start making payments on your new loan, which has a different interest rate and terms.
You may want to do this for various reasons, but ideally, you should be able to obtain a new, better interest rate as part of the process.
2. Reasons why you want to refinance a personal loan
You have multiple personal loans, and you must pay many interests at once. That exhausts you because it severely devastates your wallet. You now want to end all of your financial woes. Here are some of the reasons why you might want to refinance your loan:
- Reduce your interest rate: This is the first advantage for you. Depending on your credit, you may be able to refinance at a lower interest rate, allowing you to save on interest charges and potentially pay off the loan sooner.
- Consolidate multiple types of debt: A personal loan can be used for almost any personal cost. For instance, if you take out a personal loan to consolidate your debts or credit cards, you could also use it to unify your previous personal loan.
- Reduce your monthly payments: If you refinance and choose a longer repayment term, you may be able to lower your monthly payments. Bear in mind that in case you choose a longer repayment term, you will pay more in interest over time.
However, there are some significant potential disadvantages to consider. Here are a few to remember:
- More interest: You may end up paying more in interest if you choose a longer repayment term. If you choose a longer-term, you may pay much more in interest over the life of the loan.
- Prepayment penalties: In some cases, lenders charge prepayment penalties if you pay off your loan early. If your original loan’s lender imposes this type of penalty, it may reduce your potential refinancing savings.
- Origination fees: Many lenders charge origination fees, ranging from 3% to 8% or more. These fees are deducted before the loan is disbursed, reducing the money you receive.
3. How to refinance a personal loan
- Step 1: Apply for a new personal loan. Pre-qualify with several lenders to determine the interest rate and terms you can get on a new loan. Pre-qualifying does not affect your credit score and allows you to compare new loan offers with the terms of your current loan.
- Step 2: Consider the costs of refinancing. Calculate the interest and fees on the new loan and compare them to the interest and fees on your existing loan to see if refinancing will lower your monthly payments or save you money in the long run.
- Step 3: Pay off your existing loan with the new loan. Some lenders will transfer funds to your bank account, while others may directly pay off your first loan.
- Step 4: Confirm that the old loan has been closed. To avoid additional fees, check your account to ensure no balance on your first loan.
- Step 5: Begin making payments on your new loan. Most lenders allow you to set up recurring payments from your checking account.
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4. When does refinancing a personal loan make sense?
Refinancing is always a good option for finding a new wind to save you from high-interest rates. However, it does not mean that you can refinance whenever you want. Here are some other instances where it might make sense:
- Avoid having to make a balloon payment: Refinance ahead of time to avoid being required to make a much larger payment than the usual monthly amount.
- Change the rate type: You can switch from a variable to a fixed rate by refinancing, giving you consistent monthly payment amounts.
- Improve your credit score: Enhancing your credit score is one of the best ways to qualify for a lower interest rate on your loan. If your credit score has improved, this could be an excellent reason to refinance.
- Your income has decreased, so you require lower monthly payments: You want a longer repayment term to help you lower your monthly payment. However, that may not save you money in the long run.
- You can pay the fees: Fees may be incurred when refinancing loans. If you clear your loan before the repayment period ends, you may be charged a prepayment fee. As a result, you should ensure that refinancing still makes financial sense after fees are deducted.
- End the repayment term soon: If you can pay higher monthly payments, you might want to refinance into a loan with a shorter period.
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5. How personal loan refinancing impacts your credit score
Loans are a two-edged sword, if not used wisely, can become a burden on your shoulders. The term “refinance” refers to the same thing. It has both negative and positive impacts on your credit score.
As usual, refinancing a loan can hurt your score at the beginning. However, borrowers can usually regain their initial credit standing simply by making on-time payments on the new loan.
5.1. Advantages of refinancing a personal loan
- You can select a longer or shorter payoff period based on the available terms.
- Based on your credit score and the current lending climate, lower interest rates may be available.
- You may be able to convert your variable-rate loan to a fixed-rate loan.
- Lower monthly payments result from extending the loan term.
5.2. Disadvantages of refinancing a personal loan
- You may be required to pay prepayment penalties on your initial loan.
- Lenders typically charge origination fees ranging from 0.5% to 1% of the loan amount.
- You have to pay more interest over time if you extend the term of your loan.
- Many lenders require a hard credit inquiry, which can hurt your credit score.
6. Alternatives to refinancing a personal loan
There are only three options for refinancing a personal loan:
- The first option is to pay off the loan balance and close the account.
- The second option, defaulting on the loan, is less appealing. When a loan goes into default, it is turned over to a debt collection agency, which contacts the borrower and collects the unpaid funds. Defaulting can devastate your credit score, hurt your ability to obtain future credit, and may result in the seizure of personal property.
- Another option borrowers have to consider is to access balance transfer credit cards, which allow them to transfer the outstanding loan balance and pay it off over time. Borrowers with good to excellent credit may obtain a 0% interest rate for a 12-month or longer introductory period. As a result, it is a good option for borrowers with a solid credit history. However, bear in mind that many credit cards charge a fee ranging from 3% to 5% of the transferred balance.
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Everything has benefits and drawbacks, and refinancing a personal loan is no exception. One thing you should think about is calculating your current loans and the interest rate you have to pay each month, then finding a new loan with a lower total interest rate that can help you save money in the long run or relieve your financial burden every month. After all, you can decide whether or not to refinance. However, keep in mind that HanFincal is here to assist you with all of your financial concerns.
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