Saturday, February 24, 2007

Take a flexible and transparent loan

My friend, who made an analysis of mortgage loans offered in Singapore told me the following:

* the lender promotes preferential interest rate for the first 3 years, sometimes longer
* in reality, the lender has the right to change the interest rate at any time, even during the first year
* the borrower is typically locked into the contract for 2 years
* the lender can raise the rate above their advertised rate, if the interest rate increases
* if the interest rate falls, the borrower does not enjoy the lower rate during the locked in period
* beyond the lock in period, the lender does not reduce the interest rate, unless the borrower takes the initiative to re-finance the loan

Conclusion: This arrangement works against the borrower. In my view, it is better to take a loan on flexible and transparent terms, even if it is more expensive.

1 comment:

Victor Foo said...

With due respect, if Housing and Development Board (HDB), a Singapore statutory board, can change the maximum loan period by passing a rule, why can't the commercial corporations.

We are just at their mercy.

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