In an interest-only loan or mortgage the borrower only pays interest each month. This makes it cheaper than a conventional mortgage, in which part of each month's payment goes towards the principal and part goes towards interest. These loans have become popular because the monthly payments are lower, allowing borrowers to afford a larger home.
However, these loans can be dangerous, especially in a down housing market. The interest rates are generally fixed for the first 1, 3 or 5 years. After that, they convert to a conventional loan, with a higher monthly payment. Most borrowers take on these loans because they assume they will sell the home before the interest rate increases. In a down market, they may not be able to sell. If they cannot afford the increased payment, they may have to default on the loan, and foreclose on the home. So, when the rate starts to adjust, you would need to refinance again. And, either get a fixed or another interest only adjustable. And, yes, I do believe you mean ARM. Although, if you have extra money every so often, you can pay down the principal in extra payments.
· 1 decade ago