I am ecstatic to announce that we got our house refinanced. We are DONE with Bank of America! Dave Ramsey calls them, "The old Boa" and that's what it felt like..... Like they were constantly squeezing us to death financially.
Not that we owe any less, we are just now with a local bank. We were very, very happy with the process, and dealing with Chad Oehlert at Citizen's State Bank in Paola. He was very helpful, explaining everything, patiently enduring all my questions, and finding answers on anything he didn't know. I highly recommend them - and the best part is, they won't sell our loan. So if we have problems or questions, we call the bank at Paola and talk to someone we know. That alone was worth any closing costs. (Which were half of any other quote I've gotten.) And we didn't have to pay any of those out of pocket.
We got an appraisal on the house, and it was actually less than the one we got last year when we tried to refinance, but still enough that we own 22% equity in our house. So that means NO MORE PMI!!!!
In case you aren't familiar with what PMI is, it's an "insurance" you're required to pay if you don't have a big downpayment for your house. It should be illegal. Because you sign your property as collateral, yet they still charge you this insurance in case you don't make your payments. So they take something monthly from you "in case" and will take your house, too, if you get behind. Complete crap, in my book. And we've paid Bank of America over $4000 in this required "insurance." Money which we will never get back, even though we were always early with our payments.
Anyhow. I'm excited about it. We're saving about $200 a month, and if we keep paying ahead, we'll pay off the house early and save something like $70,000 in interest. And I tell you what, the thought of being completely debt-free gets me downright giddy with excitement.