NJ Mortgage Closing Costs Second Highest in the Nation
Although the average mortgage closing costs fell 7 percent over the past year, New Jersey still ranks second highest in the nation, according to new report from Bankrate.com.
The average number in the nation is $1,847, which is on a $200,000 loan. Holden Lewis, mortgage analyst for Bankrate.com, said the 7 percent is a margin of error, and that 7 percent isn't a huge difference from last year.
Hawaii had the highest closing cost, at $2,163 on a $200,000 loan. The lowest is Ohio at $1,613. New Jersey ranked second highest in the nation at $2,094.
The reason Hawaii and New Jersey have a higher closing cost is because the cost of living is higher, according to Lewis.
New Jersey's mortgage closing rate actually increased by $120 over last year because prices rose. New Jersey is also an attorney closing state, which makes closing costs more expensive. In some state, like California, only an escrow agent is necessary when a house is being closed.
Lewis said homeowners can save money if they put in the work. He said they really should comparison shop when getting a mortgage and said it's important for consumers to look at more than just interest rates.
He said consumers should look at the closing costs and the monthly mortgage payments and calculating how much they're going to pay out of pocket in the first five years.
"Homebuyers have more say over closing costs than they think," Lewis said. "Costs vary between lenders, so everyone should compare at least three different options. You don't have to go with the lender your agent suggests."
In October, those who have mortgages will find that the numbers will be automatically calculated in new loan documents. This feature is called the Loan Estimate and it is replacing the Good Faith Estimate. The cost for the first five years will be included in the loan estimate and that will make it easier for people to compare one loan offer with another.