Home loan tips to help you own your house outright quicker
READ and learn with Gladstone Suncorp Bank mobile banking manager Ally Ingram as she teachers how to own your home, not your debt.
Paying off your home loan sooner opens up a rich world of opportunity.
Extra money for that holiday, parking a new car in your garage or taking early retirement could be yours if you take a few simple steps to reduce the term of your home loan and save some extra money for yourself.
Before doing anything, though, it's best to check the rules and regulations with your individual lender.
Once armed with all the right information, however, it's time to make some important moves toward owning your home outright.
Tip one: Pay more often
When you take out a home loan with a bank, the most common option given to you is monthly repayments.
That's not the only option available to you.
Instead, divide your monthly payment by two and pay that amount each fortnight.
Not only will you slash years off your repayment schedule but you'll also pay much less interest.
Effectively what you'll be doing is making a couple of extra payments a year and it can make an enormous difference.
Tip two: Top up your repayments
Adding a little extra to your monthly or fortnightly repayment can go a long way to reducing the amount of interest you pay and in the length of the loan, putting even more money back in your pocket.
Again, check with your lender to see that they will allow it.
If they do, when you get a windfall - your tax return or a work bonus - use it to get ahead on your loan repayments.
Tip three - Maintain the same repayment, even if the interest rate drops
A drop in interest rates can immediately trigger a desire to reduce mortgage repayments so there's a little more cash coming into the household.
If you maintain the same level of repayments then the long-term benefits will be much more rewarding and, again, you'll be able to sign those final repayment documents a lot sooner.
Check out your bank's website and punch some figures into its home-loan calculator.
Once you start seeing the real dollar savings you can achieve, it might be just the motivation you need to keep up those payment levels.
These aren't complex ideas and the long-term goal of owning your own home can be realised far sooner than you originally anticipated, leaving you more time and money to follow your own dreams.
Getting out of debt more quickly is achievable.
Finding that extra $20 a fortnight for an extra payment could simply be a matter of making your own coffee at work instead of buying one or taking lunch instead of visiting the cafe.
Admittedly budgets are tight for some of us but if you do get a chance to put in place any of these tips, you'll be banking your very own Lotto win.
Disclaimer: Financial product advice is provided by representatives of Suncorp Financial Services Pty Ltd. Any advice given is general advice and it may not be right for you. You should contact a financial planner for advice specific to your circumstances.