Feel whoozy these days when you think about your mortgage and climbing interest rates? The Bank of Canada says rates may climb several percentage points this year. Homeowners, with floating mortgages and variable interest rates, may be hardest hit. More so, if you overextended your budget to buy the most home possible, at the lowest floating rate you could find. Now that great room may not seem so great. Even a one- or two- point rise in interest rates can mean hundreds of dollars difference each month on big mortgages. Where can you find those dollars to help you keep your home, and meet this rising cost?
Get professional advice. Even in extreme circumstances-illness, job loss, or other dire situation-there are experts who will show you how to save money-yes, even hundreds of dollars each month. These experts are often available to you for free, through your mortgage lender, bank, or government service. Some are even available online, and you can submit your questions anonymously, by email. Use them. They know their stuff.
Don’t be embarrassed to ask for help. Money management is something few of us have ever been taught. And it’s only through hard money knocks that we get smart about our finances. Save yourself some pain, and ask for help before your debt overwhelms you. For example, it’s sometimes possible to lower your monthly mortgage payments by re-amortizing your loan over a different period, or making fewer payments. You can contact your credit card company and ask for a lower interest rate. Does this feel like you’re admitting financial defeat? You’re not. This is a smart financial tactic to keep your debt under control, your bill payments out of arrears, and you out of collections.
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