Let’s break it down…
There are ALWAYS costs on any refinance loan… no matter the mortgage company, loan officer, bank or lender. There are appraisal costs, attorney fees, title insurance, recording fees and – here in the State of Georgia – an “intangible tax” on all mortgages. Apart from some loans that don’t require an appraisal, all other fees will be charged in your refinance. They are misleadingly hidden in a couple of ways. This does not mean that what the lender is doing is bad; it simply means that the way they are describing it is somewhat deceptive. The most common way they get away with it is they roll the costs into the loan. This means that if your current balance is $150,000 and you have $3,000 in closing costs, the new loan amount is $153,000. Therefore, the more appropriate terminology is a “nothing out of pocket” refi. Another way mortgage companies like to hide fees for a “no closing cost refinance” is by paying all of the settlement fees on your behalf, seemingly out of the goodness of their hearts, and then they charge you a higher interest rate to make up the difference. You can see this in loans with large lender credits. Don’t be surprised if you are, in fact, paying for those costs (and possibly even more) by taking out a higher rate for the life of the loan. That said, there is NOTHING wrong with rolling the closing costs into the loan or financing those costs through a higher interest rate if your mortgage lender is upfront and honest with you.
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At Mortgage Atlanta, integrity is the foundation of our culture. You can always expect us to shoot straight with you and never EVER push the concept of a “no closing cost refi.” Scout’s honor!