Unravel the Mysteries: A Complete Guide to Understanding Mortgage Points

Are you thinking about buying a house or refinancing your mortgage? If so, you’ve probably heard of mortgage points. But what exactly are they, and are they worthwhile? In this comprehensive tutorial, we’ll go over everything you need to know about mortgage points, including how they operate, the benefits and drawbacks, how to calculate them, and how to choose the best mortgage points.

What exactly are Mortgage Points?

Mortgage Points Explained

Mortgage points, also known as discount points, are fees given to a lender at the closing table in exchange for a lower mortgage interest rate. Each point costs 1% of the loan amount and can reduce your interest rate by 0.25% to 0.5%.

Mortgage Point Varieties

Mortgage points are classified into two types: discount points and origination points. Discount points are the most popular type of interest rate reduction tool. Origination points, on the other hand, are used to cover the lender’s costs associated with loan processing.

Mortgage Points and How They Work

Paying mortgage points is essentially prepaying interest on your loan. This lowers the amount of interest you will pay over the life of your loan, resulting in reduced monthly payments and potentially considerable long-term savings.

Mortgage Points: Pros and Cons
Mortgage Points’ Benefits

Mortgage points have the primary benefit of saving you money over the life of your loan. You will pay less interest over time and potentially save thousands of dollars if you pay for a reduced interest rate upfront.

Mortgage Points’ Drawbacks

The biggest downside of mortgage points is that they have a high initial cost. This can be difficult for many homebuyers, particularly those who are already stretching their budgets to buy a home.

Considerations Before Choosing Mortgage Points

Before determining whether to purchase mortgage points, examine your financial status, how long you intend to stay in your home, and your overall homeownership aspirations. If you want to stay in your house for an extended period of time and have the finances to pay for mortgage points, they may be a good option. Mortgage points, on the other hand, may not be worth it if you plan to move soon or do not have the finances available.

Mortgage Points Calculation Formula

You’ll need to know the entire loan amount, the interest rate, and the number of points you wish to buy to compute mortgage points. The mortgage point calculation formula is as follows:

Total Loan Amount x Points / 100 = Mortgage Points Cost

Mortgage Point Calculation Examples

Assume you’re getting a $200,000 mortgage with a 4.5% interest rate. You wish to purchase two mortgage points for $4,000 up front. Here’s how to figure out how much mortgage points cost:

$200,000 x 2 / 100 = $4,000

Paying $4,000 upfront reduces your interest rate to 4%, resulting in cheaper monthly payments and potentially significant long-term savings.

How to Decide Whether Mortgage Points Are Worth It

You must compute your breakeven threshold to evaluate whether mortgage points are worthwhile. At this time, the savings from your lower interest rate will cover the cost of purchasing mortgage points. Divide the cost of mortgage points by the amount you’ll save each month on your mortgage payment to determine your breakeven point. This will tell you how many months it will take to return your initial investment.

For example, if you spend $4,000 for mortgage points and save $100 per month on your mortgage payment, your breakeven point is 40 months. Purchasing mortgage points may be worthwhile if you intend to stay in your house for more than 40 months.

Considerations for Choosing Mortgage Points

When deciding on mortgage points, examine your entire financial status, how long you intend to stay in your home, and your homeownership ambitions. You should also weigh the costs and benefits of purchasing mortgage points against alternatives such as paying down your principle or investing in other assets.

Avoiding Common Mistakes When Choosing Mortgage Points

One typical mistake to avoid when selecting mortgage points is failing to conduct adequate research. It is critical to understand and analyze the costs and benefits of purchasing mortgage points. You should also avoid purchasing too many mortgage points or purchasing them if you do not intend to stay in your house for an extended period of time.


To summarize, mortgage points can be a viable option for certain purchasers, but they are not for everyone. Before determining whether to purchase mortgage points, examine your financial status, how long you intend to stay in your home, and your overall homeownership aspirations. You should also conduct research, evaluate your options, and, if required, seek professional counsel. You may make an informed decision about whether mortgage points are worth it for you if you follow these guidelines.

This is not intended to be legal or financial advice. Please get expert counsel about your specific circumstances. Equal Housing Lender with the FDIC. Closing Disclosure and Loan Estimate. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Capital Gains, Losses, and Taxation.

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