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Have equity in your home? Want a lower payment? An appraisal from Appraisal Express HI, LLC can help you get rid of your PMI.

It's generally inferred that a 20% down payment is the standard when buying a house. Because the liability for the lender is generally only the remainder between the home value and the amount outstanding on the loan, the 20% adds a nice cushion against the charges of foreclosure, reselling the home, and natural value variationson the chance that a borrower is unable to pay.

Banks were working with down payments down to 10, 5 and even 0 percent during the mortgage boom of the mid 2000s. How does a lender manage the increased risk of the small down payment? The answer is Private Mortgage Insurance or PMI. This supplemental policy takes care of the lender if a borrower is unable to pay on the loan and the market price of the home is less than the loan balance.

Since the $40-$50 a month per $100,000 borrowed is lumped into the mortgage payment and generally isn't even tax deductible, PMI is pricey to a borrower. Unlike a piggyback loan where the lender consumes all the losses, PMI is advantageous for the lender because they obtain the money, and they receive payment if the borrower defaults.

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

How can buyers keep from bearing the expense of PMI?

The Homeowners Protection Act of 1998 obligates the lenders on most loans to automatically cancel the PMI when the principal balance of the loan equals 78 percent of the initial loan amount. The law stipulates that, at the request of the homeowner, the PMI must be released when the principal amount equals only 80 percent. So, acute home owners can get off the hook a little early.

It can take many years to get to the point where the principal is just 20% of the initial amount borrowed, so it's necessary to know how your home has appreciated in value. After all, all of the appreciation you've gained over the years counts towards removing PMI. So why should you pay it after your loan balance has dropped below the 80% mark? Despite the fact that nationwide trends predict declining home values, understand that real estate is local. Your neighborhood might not be minding the national trends and/or your home might have secured equity before things simmered down.

The toughest thing for many homeowners to understand is just when their home's equity goes over the 20% point. An accredited, licensed real estate appraiser can definitely help. It's an appraiser's job to keep up with the market dynamics of their area. At Appraisal Express HI, LLC, we know when property values have risen or declined. We're masters at identifying value trends in Kihei, Maui County and surrounding areas. Faced with figures from an appraiser, the mortgage company will usually eliminate 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