Hawaii experiencing a refinance boom - Hawaii News Now - KGMB and KHNL

Hawaii experiencing a refinance boom

Wendy Iwasaki Wendy Iwasaki
Chad Mizuuchi Chad Mizuuchi

By Paul Drewes - bio | email

HAWAII KAI (KHNL) - The housing market is falling fast from foreclosures, and many island residents are reeling from the recession. But now some Hawaii homeowners are scrambling to refinance their mortgages. A move that could save hundreds, even thousands of dollars a month.

Wendy Iwasaki spends a lot of time in her kitchen, which she fixed up just the way she likes during a previous refinance of her mortgage. Now, this time around she is looking to save money.

"I estimate that I can get a $500 savings per month on my current loan," said the Hawaii Kai resident.

Because of dropping federal rates, many mortgage brokers are now quoting rates close to 4.5 percent for people with good credit.

"We're in a refinance boom. Rates are at a record low," said Chad Mizuuchi, with Pacific Mortgage Group.

That has sparked some homeowners to act quickly in an effort to save money.

"With the interest rates dropping I've been watching, I've been looking on line. But I stay in touch with my mortgage broker and he told me rates are bottoming so come down!" said Iwasaki.

And the phones have ringing off the hook at mortgage brokers as island residents rush to refinance.

While some homeowners will be able to lower their payments, not all will be able to take advantage of this re-financing boom.

"Even though rates are at a record low, we can't save everyone. There are people out there that can't qualify for mortgage due to low credit score or because of tougher lending guidelines," said Mizuuchi.

The lower interest rates could help homeowners looking to get out of adjustable rate mortgages, but would probably not benefit those in the most need of help - homeowners facing foreclosure.

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