If you’re saddled with a Wells Fargo mortgage, now would be a good time to slash your rate and payment through little effort by hitting up the bank’s streamlined refinancing program, which under certain circumstances lets you refi without being gouged for closing costs.
You can find lower rates elsewhere, but you’ll probably have to shell out upwards of $3,000 in fees to nab them. Granted, in most cases it’s probably worth paying the closing costs because if you find a low enough rate you’ll make up for the upfront fees in the long run, but paying that much only makes sense if you’re sure you’ll stay in your house for a couple more years.
I used the offer and shaved an eighth of a percentage point off my rate, dropped my payment by more than $200 a month and rolled less than $200 in administrative fees into my principal.
To get a streamlined mortgage refi, you need to (among other requirements) have no home equity lines of credit, owe less than what your property is worth and not have changed the names on the title since you closed the first time. Access your current mortgage through WellsFargo.com, click on the link to the right of your balance that says “refinance your mortgage,” fill out an online application and if approved you’ll be asked to send in your tax forms, pay stubs and bank account statements. Next you’ll be sent a contract you’ll need to have notarized, which I recommend doing at a Wells Fargo branch because they’ll do it for free even though they’ll also try to upsell you some new credit cards and savings accounts.