Have equity in your home? Want a lower payment? An appraisal from Premier Appraisal of SoCal can help you get rid of your PMI.

It's generally inferred that a 20% down payment is accepted when purchasing a home. Because the liability for the lender is usually only the remainder between the home value and the sum remaining on the loan, the 20% provides a nice cushion against the costs of foreclosure, selling the home again, and regular value changeson the chance that a borrower defaults.

During the recent mortgage boom of the mid 2000s, it became customary to see lenders requiring down payments of 10, 5 or even 0 percent. How does a lender manage the added risk of the low down payment? The solution is Private Mortgage Insurance or PMI. This added policy covers the lender in the event a borrower defaults on the loan and the market price of the home is less than what the borrower still owes on the loan.

Since the $40-$50 a month per $100,000 borrowed is compiled into the mortgage monthly payment and often isn't even tax deductible, PMI can be expensive to a borrower. Unlike a piggyback loan where the lender takes in all the damages, PMI is lucrative for the lender because they collect the money, and they receive payment if the borrower doesn't pay.

Does your monthly mortgage payment include PMI? Contact us, you may be able to save money by removing your PMI.

How can homebuyers avoid bearing the expense of PMI?

With the utilization of The Homeowners Protection Act of 1998, on most loans lenders are obligated to automatically terminate the PMI when the principal balance of the loan equals 78 percent of the initial loan amount. The law promises that, at the request of the homeowner, the PMI must be dropped when the principal amount reaches just 80 percent. So, wise home owners can get off the hook a little earlier.

Since it can take many years to get to the point where the principal is just 20% of the original amount borrowed, it's important to know how your home has appreciated in value. After all, all of the appreciation you've obtained over time counts towards dismissing PMI. So why should you pay it after the balance of your loan has dropped below the 80% mark? Despite the fact that nationwide trends signify declining home values, realize that real estate is local. Your neighborhood may not be heeding the national trends and/or your home could have gained equity before things cooled off.

The difficult thing for almost all home owners to know is just when their home's equity rises above the 20% point. A certified, licensed real estate appraiser can surely help. As appraisers, it's our job to know the market dynamics of our area. At Premier Appraisal of SoCal, we're experts at pinpointing value trends in Mission Viejo, Orange County and surrounding areas, and we know when property values have risen or declined. Faced with data from an appraiser, the mortgage company will often cancel the PMI with little effort. At that time, the homeowner can retain the savings from that point on.

Want to learn more about PMI and the Homeowners Protection Act? Click this link:
Cancellation of Private Mortgage Insurance: Federal Law May Save You Hundreds of Dollars Each Year