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How can I pay off my mortgage faster?

If you are wondering, ‘how can i pay off my mortgage faster?’ – for most of us, owning property is our biggest investment, but it doesn’t have to be the most expensive.

Regardless of what we owe, paying down the mortgage is a smart money move.

How can I pay off my mortgage faster – Easier said than done?

In fact there are numerous ways to reduce mortgage debt without putting undue strain on stretched finances.

Here’s 5 that won’t dent the budget.

1. Pay down the principal early

Did you know the point at which you pay the most interest is in the first years of your loan? That’s when the principal is at its highest, so the sooner you pay down the principal the better off you’ll be.

2. Make more payments

One of the simplest strategies to pay off your home loan faster and save on interest is to make extra repayments. By paying down your mortgage fortnightly, with many lenders you’ll pay 13 payments a year instead of 12. Of course, if you can make even more payments throughout the year, such as a lump-sum amount, you could save thousands of dollars and reduce your loan term. And given rates are at all-time lows, rounding up your repayment to pay that little extra also helps.

Before taking action on how can I pay off my mortgage faster

3. Check out package deals

Ask for a discount on your loan. Some lenders offer professional packages to specific professional groups or members of professional organisations that can shave up to 1 per cent or more off your mortgage rate. If you don’t ask, you’ll never know whether you’re eligible. And there’s often further savings tied to a package such as discounted home insurance, and fee-free credit card or transaction accounts. Also look into the benefits of all-in-one loans or 100 percent offset loans, which allow you to pay all your income into an offset account and then repay all your debt from the one account.

4. Consolidate all your debts

If you have more than one credit card or loan, pay off the one with the highest interest rate first, or tackle the smallest debt first. Better still, most lenders allow you to refinance all your debts under your home loan or an unsecured debt consolidation loan. If you have a mortgage and equity in your home, incorporating your personal debt onto your mortgage and increasing repayments could save a significant amount of interest. Consider what you’ll save by transferring credit card or personal loan debts with interest rates of around 15 to 20 percent to your home loan where interest rates are under 3 per cent! Just remember though, you need to increase your repayments so these debts don’t hang around for the life of your mortgage.

If you are really serious about ‘how can I pay off my mortgage faster’

5. Split your loan, or pay more off your fixed rate

It seems we don’t have to worry too much about an interest rate rise. However if you want to stick to a budget, fixing your loan is the way forward. But don’t fix the lot. You can hedge your bets by taking out a a split loan, which allows you to take part of your loan as fixed and part as variable. This way you can still make those extra repayments or lump sum amounts on the variable component of your “combination” loan. Already locked your loan down to a fixed rate? Check with your provider whether you can make extra repayments without penalty. Most lenders will allow you to pay an extra $10,000 a year off your fixed loan without incurring extra fees.

There are many more ways to reduce mortgage debt and save on tax at the same time.

ASIC publish a handy guide to paying off your mortgage faster too.

If you’d like to chat about finance, please contact us.

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