Mortgage Refinance in Portland: How the Math Is Changing in 2024

May 24, 2017
Last updated:
January 4, 2024
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When mortgage rates are low, that presents an opportunity for homeowners to refinance their mortgages to take advantage of lower rates and huge savings. But rates are high these days. What does this mean for homeowners who want to capitalize on refinances?

In this article, we’ll go through the current refinancing activity market in Portland and across the country and help you determine if now is the right time for you to refinance.

Mortgage Refinance Update for Portland, Oregon

For months, refinancing activity in Portland has dipped as mortgage rates have continued to inch up over the past couple of years. As of the week of December 29, 2023, the mortgage rate for a 30-year fixed-rate mortgage sits at 6.61%. This is higher than where it was the same time last year.

Given the increase in mortgage rates, refinance activity has slowed over the past year. According to the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) Refinance Index, refinance activity decreased over recent months. Mortgage interest rates have reached their highest levels since early 2020, putting downward pressure on refinance activity.

However, on the heels of news of dips in mortgage rates over the coming months, refinance activity has picked up. In fact, the MBA’s Refinance Index was 18% higher this past week compared to the same week in 2022.

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Home Prices Rising Across Portland and the Entire State

Rising home values may also enable more Portland homeowners to refinance their mortgage loans in 2024. While home prices have dipped over the past year, they’ve made incredible gains over the past 5 years.

Right now, home prices in Portland are averaging $519,746, which is over 20% higher than in 2018. This increase in property values is allowing homeowners to capitalize on major gains in home equity.

In the state of Oregon as a whole, the average home price is currently $483,939. Prices have decreased 0.3% over the past 12 months, according to Zillow. However, they’ve soared over 40% over the past 5 years.

Rising house values give homeowners more equity, which can make it easier to qualify for a refinance loan.

Related: Portland Real Estate Prediction: Low Inventory Will Boost Prices

When Does Refinancing Make Sense?

So how do you know if it’s a good time to refinance your home in Portland? When does refinancing work to your advantage, financially speaking? Fortunately, there’s no guesswork involved here. It’s just basic math.

Assuming you want to refinance primarily to reduce your monthly payments, all you have to do is calculate your “break-even” point. This is the point at which your accrued monthly savings (from the new home loan) begin to exceed your upfront closing costs. If you keep the loan beyond that point, it works out to your financial advantage.

To determine your break-even, you’ll need to know the following:

  • How much will you pay in closing costs on the new loan?
  • How much will you save each month after refinancing?

By dividing the cost of the refi by the amount of money saved each month, you can determine how many months it would take to reach your break-even point.

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Let’s Run the Numbers For Refinancing

Could you benefit from refinancing your Portland home in 2024? We can help you decide by evaluating your current loan situation and your financing goals. Sammamish Mortgage is a local, family-owned company based in Bellevue, Washington. We currently lend in all of Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Colorado and provide qualified borrowers with a variety of mortgage programs to suit their needs, including our Diamond Homebuyer Program, Cash Buyer Program, and Bridge Loans. We have been helping borrowers since 1992, and we’d be happy to help you too. Please contact us if you have mortgage-related questions.

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