We would need to review the note, title, payment history,etc. A payoff would need be provided by the note holder. This would involve a little more work than a nomral refinance, but if you are interested, send me an email and I can work up some numbers for you.
You can refi. Two things to consider. 1) You could trigger an early payoff for your previous lender, which would cost them money. It will not affect you, but if you care, it is something to consider.2) Nothing is free, as it cost lots of money to originate and close a loan, you would be surprised to know how many hands actually work on your loan behind the scenes. That said, you would qualify for a 40% discount on a title policy. You can also reduce some fees by accepting a slightly higher interest rate. It is matter of contacting a lender and having them run the numbers for you. Shoot me an email if you want me to work some up for you.
There seems to be some long winded answers here. I will keep it simple.Ask yourself how long will you be in your home? Then take your closing costs and divide them by your monthly savings. This equation will give you the break even point in months. If the break even in months is less than your estimated time you plan to live in the home, the it is worth doing the refi. (you may need to consult a mortgage company to provide you an estimate in closing costs and monthly savings - of course Zillow Mortgage Marketplace is a great place to start) Remember the big question to the whole things is how long you plan to live at your home.
I must hear this question on every other loan application I take. Who started this myth???Shopping for a mortgage does not lower your credit score. However, numerous inquiries in a VERY short time for LOTS of different types of credit (credit card, auto, mortgage, etc) is a red flag and the repositories do take this into account for scoring. (thought to be very little). The theory being that if someone is applying for credit all over the place there must be an underlying reason they need credit so bad. To what effect it has on the score is a mystery, as each repository has their own scoring system not revealed. (notice you have 3 different scores)
Unfortunately, for the purpose of an appraisal for a loan, you do not have much control of your value. Your home's value is made up mainly by the comparable sales in your neighborhood. +/- a little for the condition, sq ft, etc of your property.If you are trying to sell your home, there are a lot of different things you could do to make your home a more "attractive" purchase for potential buyers, thus possibly increase the sales price. I would search the internet for the differnt ways you could add "marketability".
Martin brings up a couple of good points - if you are in a declining market expect a lot of scrutiny from you lender on your value. Most lenders will reduce thier loan to value requirement by at least 5% for a declining market if they will even lend at all. I feel for you guys in Florida. I have/had a lot of frends working in the industry down there. Brutal.
From a lending standpoint, the value of your home will be determined by the like comparable sales in your neighborhood. The sales must be recent, usually from the last 3 to 6 months. There can be slight adjustments for sq footage, condition, etc. This is what an appraiser is going to look at amoungst a whole host of other things, but should give you a real good idea.