Online Amortization Schedules

Online amortization schedule calculators are some of the best online available. They are web-based, so they do not need additional software or applications. Amortization schedules can be calculated immediately online on one of their web pages.

Ewmortgage.com is a mortgage advisor website that features a Java-based interactive amortization table (http://www.ewmortgage.com/mortgage/), and other mortgage-related applications such as APR/front end calculator, 5/25 and 7/23 balloon convertible mortgage calculator, car leasing payment calculator, monthly payment table generator, income qualification calculator, nominal and effective interest rate calculator, etc.

Realdata.com, real estate investment and development software developers, offers a web-based amortization utility (http://realdata.com/ds/amort2.shtml) and a Microsoft Excel version (http://realdata.com/ds/amort.xls) that can be downloaded for free. The web tool is Java-based so you need to enable JavaScript in your browser.

Calculators4mortgages.com also has a Java-based Amortization Schedule (http://www.calculators4mortgages.com/Calculators/Amortization-Schedule/amortization_schedule.html) that calculates the monthly payment of a specific loan and breaks down the amount of principal and interest paid over the term of the loan.

HSH Associates (http://www.hsh.com/calc-amort.html), a consumer loan information website, features an amortization calculator to generate an amortization schedule (by month or by year), as well the monthly payment for a mortgage paid either monthly or bi-weekly. It is also capable of demonstrating the effects of prepaying your mortgage on an irregular or regular basis. There is also a JavaScript version available.

Century21.com, a real estate website, lets you calculate amortization schedules and save, and email the result or amortization table. However, you need to register to use the save and email features. Registration also allows you to store your search criteria, file agent information and build a custom library. Entry method is standard such as loan amount, interest rate, loan term and monthly payment.

Understanding Real Estate Terminology

Purchasing a home can be a complicated and confusing process, especially for first-time buyers. Throughout the process, first-time home buyers will encounter a variety of unfamiliar real state terms. There are several key terms associates with purchasing real estate that are helpful to learn.
For example, many buyers confuse the terms broker and salesperson. A broker is a properly licensed individual, or corporation, who serves as a special agent in the purchase and sale of real estate, a salesperson is an individual employed or associated by written agreement by the broker as an independent contractor. The salesperson facilitates the purchase or sale of real estate.
Once you decide to purchase, a salesperson will prepare a sales contract to present to the seller along with your earnest money deposit. The sales contract is the document through which the seller agrees to give possession and title of property to the buyer upon full payment of the purchase price and performance of agreed-upon conditions. The earnest money is a buyer’s partial payment, as a show of good faith, to make the contract binding. Often, the earnest money is held in an escrow account. Escrow is the process by which money is held by a disinterested party until the terms of the escrow instructions are fulfilled.
After the buyer and seller have signed the contract, the buyer must obtain a mortgage note by presenting the contract to a mortgage lender. The note is the buyer’s promise to pay the purchase price of the real estate in addition to a stated interest rate over a specified period of time. A mortgage lender places a lien on the property, or mortgage, and this secures the mortgage note.
The buyer pays interest money to the lender exchange for the use of money borrowed. Interest is usually referred to as APR or annual percentage rate. Interest is paid on the principle, the capital sum the buyer owes. Interest payments may be disguised in the form of points. Points are an up-front cost which may be paid by either the buyer or seller or both in conventional loans.
In general, there are two types of conventional loans that a buyer can obtain. A fixed rate loan has the same rate of interest for the life of the loan, usually 14 to 30 years. An adjustable rate loan or adjustable rate mortgage (ARM) provides a discounted initial rate, which changes after a set period of time. The rate can’t exceed the interest rate cap or ceiling allowed on such loans for any one adjustment period. Some ARMs have a lifetime cap on interest. The buyer makes the loan and interest payments to the lender through amortization, the systematic payment and retirement of debt over a set period of time.
Once the contract has been signed and a mortgage note obtained, the buyer and seller must legally close the real estate transaction. The closing is a meeting where the buyer, seller and their attorneys review, sign and exchange the final documents. At the closing, the buyer receives the appraisal report, an estimate of the property’s value with the appraiser’s signature, certification and sporting documents. The buyer also receives the title and the deed. The title shows evidence of the buyer’s ownership of the property while the deed legally transfers the title from the seller to the buyer. The final document the buyer receives at closing is a title insurance policy, insurance against the loss of the title if it’s found to be imperfect.
Buyers should plan on a least four to twelve weeks for a typical real estate transaction. The process is difficult and at times, intimidating. A general understanding of real estate terminology and chronology of the transaction, however, will help any real estate novice to confidently buy his or her first home.

How Offset Mortgages Work for Fixed and Tracker Mortgages

For consumers who are looking to save money on their home loans, the first option is usually to opt for a home loan that offers the lowest interest rate. While this path works well for those that want to limit themselves to the standard products currently on the market, a home loan option that more and more people are considering is an offset mortgage. With these loans consumers offset the value of the loan with another investment, such as savings in a current a account. While offsetting was previously considered a niche product, with Bank of England interest rates currently so low, this product is gaining in popularity with more and more homebuyers. As a result, many lenders are now offering offset home loans that are increasingly competitive and also more affordable for the average homebuyer. This article will discuss what offset home loans are, and what their advantages and disadvantages are.

Offsetting

When consumers take out a standard loan on their property, they typically expect to pay a certain interest rate for the entire sum borrowed. So a 100,000 loan with an APR of five per cent will see the borrower paying 5,000 per year in interest on that loan. Offset loans, however, work a bit differently. With these loans, the borrower can still take out the same 100,000 loan, but he would then offset that loan with whatever savings he has, such as a current account or, in some cases, an Isa. As a result, he will no longer earn interest from his savings, but he will be able to reduce his interest payments on his offset mortgage. For example, that same borrower with a 100,000 loan who offsets it with 25,000 in savings would effectively only pay interest on 75,000 of the loan.

Advantages

Since current Bank of England interest rates are extremely low, most consumers are making even less than the rate of inflation on the savings they have in their current accounts. In contrast, interest rates on home loans are typically much higher than the Bank of England rate, meaning sacrificing the interest from savings for the sake of paying less in interest rates on a home loan makes financial sense for many people. Additionally, since the interest made on current accounts is taxable, homeowners will effectively be able to avoid paying tax on those savings by using that account to offset a home loan. Finally, in most instances monthly repayments are based on the total value of the loan, meaning that even though that same homeowner is only paying interest on 75,000 of a 100,000 loan, he will still be making repayments based on the full 100,000. As a result, he will in effect be able to pay down his loan faster.

Disadvantages

While an offset loan can be a great way to pay less in interest, it is not necessarily for everybody. As with standard home loans, offset loans are available as either fixed-rate or tracker mortgages. The difference, however, is that the interest rates are usually slightly higher for an offset loan than they would be for a standard loan. As a result, an offset loan is likely to work best for those who have a large amount of savings that they want to use as an offset. While many tracker mortgages, and even some fixed-rate loans, will offer attractive rates to begin with, it is important to keep in mind that these are typically introductory offers. Once that introductory period ends consumers could be stuck with an interest rate that is uncompetitive even with a large offset. Also, while consumers will still be able to access their savings, they need to be aware that if they withdraw money from their savings then the amount offset against their loan will likewise decrease. Finally, there are often additional restrictions, such as high minimum deposits and rules stipulating that the account that is being used to offset the loan must be held with the same lending institution that is offering the loan.

While offset home loans are not necessarily for everyone, consumers who have a large or even moderate amount of savings should be aware of them. In the past few years, these loans have become increasingly affordable and are now available to anyone that wants to make sure their money is working a little bit harder.