We have some low rates as of 7/17/2010 The lowest Ive seen since 2004. Now is a great time to buy a home or two.
6% 200,000 30 year fixed rate for 720 credit score will have principal/ interest payment of $1199
4.375% 200,000 20 year fixed rate for same credit score with 80% loan to value (LTV) has principle/interest payment (P&I) of $1251
The payment increases $52/mo but instead of 30 years, you are triming the term of the loan by several years.
Let us say the existing loan is a 30 year fixed at 5.5% with a P&I payment of $1136, the payment only increases $115 but the largest benefit is to shorten the length or terms of the loan.
With my mortgage I try to always pay at least 50 dollars extra every month to be applied to principal. This will reduce several years off the length of your loan. This type of payment can be just as good if not better than having your home refinanced. Now if you refi and pay extra you will pay your home off even faster
National Mortgage Licensing System (nmls)#72244 North Carolina