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How Can You Reduce Your Total Loan Cost?

Last modified: Dec 10, 2022

Purchasing a house or vehicle in cash isn't something anyone can afford. So taking out a loan is the best solution.

Considering that loans are financial aids that must be paid back with interest and additional taxes, you want this debt to be as manageable as possible. That said, how can you reduce your total loan cost? Read on to find out.

How Can I Reduce My Total Loan Cost?

Unsurprisingly, some of your most significant life decisions come with a hefty price tag. As a result, taking out a loan from a trustworthy lender is the most straightforward alternative to cover that cost.

Although this may sound easy at first, it can negatively affect your financial situation in the future. That's why you should know how to pay off your loan cost.

But first, we'll take a step back to understand how much is the actual cost of borrowing.

Understanding Your Total Cost of Borrowing

Before looking for a borrower, it's essential to examine all costs of getting a loan on your vehicle, house, or education.

Here's what you need to look for:

  • Loan amount. The chosen sum of money will influence the interest rate and terms available. The less you borrow, the less you'll have to pay off in the future.
  • Interest rate / Annual Percentage Rate (APR). Your credit history determines the APR from which you can be eligible. An excellent credit score will translate into a convenient APR.
  • Loan Term. Adding extra money to your monthly payment can help reduce the term and interest rates.
  • Loan Fees. The most common fees include prepayment penalty and origination, annual, and transfer fees.

Before Taking a Loan, Look For the following:

Lower Monthly Payments

Monthly payments can take a massive toll on your financial performance. That's why reducing the due amount can create some extra room in your budget. Here are a few tricks on how to do that:

  • Lower your rate if your credit score has improved.
  • Merge your loans and credit cards in one monthly payment with a lower interest rate or longer term.
  • Consider extending the length of your loan.
  • Opt for pay-down strategies.

Loan That Can Withstand Income Changes

Especially if you're in college, it can be challenging to pay off student loans. There's where income-driven repayment (IDR) steps in.

Offered by the federal government, IDR plans help borrowers lower monthly bills based on income and family size.

Switching to one of these plans is typically the best option if:

  • You cannot carry out current payments and want to avoid late fees.
  • You have the requirements to apply for the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program.
  • You have a lot of student debt, a low salary, and no job.

Borrow Money Against Appreciating Assets

You should only sometimes see debt from a positive perspective. However, in some cases, loans can assist you in working towards your financial goal. The more assets you have, the more lending options are available.

Here are three popular asset-backed lending options to choose from:

  • Home-equity line of credit for home improvement, liquidity, and debt consolidation.
  • The margin for additional investments and short-term liquidity.
  • Securities-based lines of credit for bridge financing and liquidity needs.

In terms of repayment, asset-backed loans are typically more flexible than a traditional mortgage.

Secure Lower Interest Rates

If you're applying for a personal loan, don't accept the first offer—it might not always be your best choice. Besides comparing lenders, here are other strategies you can adopt to reduce the total loan cost.

  • Get a co-signer
  • Sign up for an autopay discount
  • Make use of collateral
  • Cooperate with a credit union
  • Select a shorter payback term
  • Improve your credit rating
  • Reduce the debt-to-income ratio

Choose the Right Lender

The best way to choose the most suitable lender is by browsing around. First, keep going even with your current bank because it's the easiest choice. Then, look for other banks, local credit unions, and online lenders.

Inquire potential lenders about rates, terms, down payment requirements, and other expenses related to the type of loan.

After Taking a Loan, Look For the following:

Reviewing and Tracing Your Loan Regularly

If you want to develop a repayment strategy, knowing where you're standing with your financial situation is crucial.

For example, property loans should be reviewed every five years. But, of course, if you took your loan when you were a newlywed and had children, the situation was much different than in the present. In this case, you should apport some changes to your loan to stretch your budget further.

Make Extra Payments

If you still need to learn how to pay off your loan cost, making extra payments can be an excellent way to minimize your debt. As the extra money is applied to the principal balance, it's only normal that even interest will decrease.

Paying large sums to reduce your overall debt is unnecessary—even an extra $100 per month can make quite the difference.

Use Points to Reduce Interest Rates

Using points allows you to pay more upfront and get a reduced loan interest rate.

Points are the go-to option for people who take a long time to repay their loans. But remember—the lender, type of loan, and market will determine the actual amount of your interest rate reduction. So, for each point paid, you may earn a massive decrease in your interest rate.

Switch From Fixed Rates to Variable Rates

Fixed rates will stay the same throughout the life of the loan. On the other hand, variable rates fluctuate over time.

The vast majority of borrowers typically select fixed rates as they want to avoid unpredictable payments. However, switching to a variable rate can be your best option if you're 100% sure your interest rate will decrease in the long run.

Reducing Cost by Loan Type

Reducing your loan is different for every type of debt. So let's take a closer look.

Home Loans

You can minimize the overall cost of your home loans by qualifying for the lowest interest rate, selecting a short-term loan, and shopping around for the lowest fees. You'll start to see the difference even if you achieve only one option out of the three.

A down payment between 3% and 20% of the property's worth can also help you decrease the value of your mortgage in the long run.

Related: Best Mortgage Protection Insurance Companies Of 2022.

Home Equity Lines of Credit

If you have equity lines of credit in your house and would like to borrow against it, you can reduce your overall debt by selecting a lender that doesn't charge any closing fee. If you choose the same bank or credit union that held your first mortgage, you can significantly diminish your closing costs.

Student Loans

Suppose you are paying off your student loan before the deadline. That can bring a vast set of benefits. Student loans are deferred for the first six months, meaning you won't have to pay. But the downfall is that interest rates continue accumulating even though you didn't start with your payments.

You should adhere to monthly payments during the deferment period to prevent those interests from arising.

Credit Card Loans

The best way to reduce your credit card debt is to pay it in full every month. Remember that credit card loans are not an expansion of your income. Instead, use it to safeguard significant transactions and pay them in full before the due date.

Bottom Line

Loans can be expensive if you want to purchase a new home or invest in your education.

Before applying for a loan, understand all the expenses that come with it. That said, how can you reduce your total loan cost? First, save enough money to make extra monthly payments and lower your interest rates.


Can loan payments be lowered?

Generally, federal providers only offer long-term monthly payments reduction like income-driven repayments. On the other hand, private lenders can provide borrowers with reduced monthly payments or interest rates for a short time.

Can I negotiate my student loans?

If you are behind with your payments but have some cash saved up, your lender might be open to offering you a deal. This works best if you can pay off a vast portion of your current debt on the spot.

What increases your total loan cost?

Now that we replied to the question, "How can you reduce your total loan cost," it's essential to know what increases it. Learning more about it can help you prevent your balance from growing.

  • Repayment delays
  • Lesser payments than the required amount
  • Extended repayment
  • Calculation errors.


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