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The Importance In Building Equity

Jan 31, 2008
If you already own a home or in the process of buying one, then you have probably heard a great deal about equity and the importance of building it.

When someone is referring to equity, they are talking about the actual difference between what the property is worth and what is owed on it. The difference tells you how much value or equity you have in that piece of property. Your home equity would typically include the down payment and any additional monies that have been used to pay down the principal.

Building equity is important because not only does it protect you from becoming upside down in your mortgage (owing more than what the property is worth) but it also allows you to obtain credit more easily in the event you would like to put a down payment on another house or obtain a loan.

If you have been living in your house for a number of years and are looking to move or perhaps even acquire an investment property, you can use the equity in your home and put it towards a payment on another property. It can also be useful if you need to borrow money to pay for college or other expenses. Equity is built over time using either amortization, appreciation, or a combination of the two.

Amortization refers to the process of paying off the loan in full. When a loan is amortized, it means that the loan is dispersed for a specific time period and it has to be paid in full by a certain date.

A home loan is set up in such a way that the loan should be paid off entirely over the course of the period of the loan. The amount of principal that you owe will go down with every monthly mortgage payment you make.

Each payment you make also brings your mortgage closer to amortization, which increases the amount of equity that you have in your home. This process will take time in the beginning, since your mortgage payment on a tradition fixed loan will include interest and principal and your payments will be going more towards the interest in the first few years.

If you want to build equity as quickly as possible, you can increase your down payment or pay more than the required amount on your mortgage payments. Doing this will also lower the amount of Private Mortgage Insurance you have to pay in the event that you do not make a down payment of at least 20% of the purchase price of the home.

If you buy at the right time and in the right location, there is also a very good chance that you will build equity by means of appreciation. When your home appreciates, it means that the actual market value of the property has increased since the time you initially purchased it.

Simply put, when appreciation rates go up, your property value goes up. The higher your property value, the more your home is worth. When your house appreciates, you build instant equity in your home. Before the real estate market cooled off, many people saw their property values skyrocket in a very short period of time.
About the Author
Zulika van Heerden is an expert on mortgage financing and provides
free information on her site for homeowners. To read more tips and techniques like the ones in this article
go to: http://www.globalproperty.co.za
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