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Mortgage Payments - Can You Afford It

by Cheryl Scott-Daniels

Depends If You Can Afford It

Affordability, stability and flexibility are the three reasons homebuyers overwhelmingly choose a 30-year term.  The payments are lower, easier to qualify for the mortgage and they can always make additional principal contributions.

However, for those who can afford a higher payment and commit to the 15-year term, there are three additional reasons: lower mortgage interest rate, build equity faster and retire the debt sooner.

The 30-year, fixed-rate mortgage is the loan of choice for first-time buyers who are more likely to use a minimum down payment and are concerned with affordable payments.  For a more experienced buyer who doesn't mind and can qualify making larger payments, there are some advantages.

Consider a $200,000 mortgage at 30 year and 15-year terms with recent mortgage rates at 4.2% and 3.31% respectively.  The payment is $433.15 less on the 30-year term but the interest being charged is higher.  The total interest paid by the borrower if each of the loans was retired would be almost three times more for the 30-year term.

Let's look at a $300,000 mortgage with 4.41% being quoted on the 30-year and 3.84% on the 15-year.  The property taxes and insurance would be the same on either loan.  The interest rate is a little over a half a percent lower on the 15-year loan, but it also has a $691.03 higher principal and interest payment due to the shorter term.

The principal contribution on the first payment of the 30-year loan is $401.56 and it is $1,235.09 on the 15-year loan.  The mortgage is being reduced by $833.53 more which exceeds the increased payment on the 15-year by $142.50.  Interestingly, over three times more is being paid toward the principal.

Some people might suggest getting a 30-year loan and then, making the payments as if they were on a 15-year loan.  That would certainly accelerate amortization and save interest.  The real challenge is the discipline to make the payments on a consistent basis if you don't have to.  Many experts cite that one of the benefits of homeownership is a forced savings that occurs due to the amortization that is not necessarily done by renters.

Use this 30-year vs. 15-year financial app to compare mortgages in your price range.  A 15-year mortgage will be approximately half a percent cheaper in rate.  You can also check current rates at

Stately Weston Retreat Overlooking the Aspetuck River

by Cheryl Scott-Daniels

17 Aspetuck Glenn in Weston was featured as a hot property in CT Post yesterday. Bernadette Blaze wrote that this 2.64 acre property overlooking the Aspetuck River, is an ideal location for an enchanting retreat with an abundance of privacy, glori­ous natural surroundings and convenient to the town and beach. The owners have found that this creates the perfect combination of solitude without seclusion. 

"Our cul-de-sac gives us the ultimate privacy," the owners commented. "The neighbors are great and we really enjoy our periodic neighborhood gatherings. And the house is 10 minutes from Compo Beach, so we enjoy the beach all year long." 

Read the whole article here:

Stone pillars frame the entry to the tranquil setting at the end of a cul-de-sac, encompassed by mature trees and approached by a winding circular driveway. Beautiful stone­work accents the exterior along the entry, front steps, foundation and chimney, setting an impressive tone that is carried throughout the home's 5,323 square feet. Five bed­rooms, four-full-and-two-half baths provide plenty of space for family or guests. 

Inside, the dramatic two-story foyer introduces an atmosphere of casual elegance that is ideal for entertaining and everyday living among finely appointed living space. Beautiful inlaid hardwood floors extend from the foyer into the formal living room, which is further enhanced by crown moldings, a handsome fireplace and French doors that open to a private study. On the opposite side of the foyer, the formal dining room is ideal for holidays meals and gatherings. 

From the dining room, French doors open to a stunning gourmet kitchen. Here, this bright and open space is brimming with beauty in form as well as function and leaves nothing to be desired among an expansive island with seating for at least four, sophisticated cabinetry, elegant backsplash and top-of-the­line Sub-Zero and Viking applianc­es. 

The sunny dining area opens onto an expansive deck that spans the back of the home and overlooks the neatly manicured grounds and winding river, perfect for outdoor entertaining or simply relaxing and taking in the peaceful surround­ings, a space that the owners have come to greatly appreciate. 

"Sitting on the deck, drinking a glass of wine, listening to the sounds of the river and enjoying the scenic views is very romantic," the owner adds. "Gazing at the stars on a clear night makes it even more special." 

The kitchen flows into the inviting family room forming the heart of the home, creating a central hub. 
"The open layout unites the kitch­en with a tremendous family room with a vaulted ceiling, large windows and a beautiful floor to ceiling stone fireplace," says listing agent Cheryl Scott-Daniels. "This large area accommodates multiple seat­ing groupings with ample space for various simultaneous activities." 

On the upper level, an open land­ing overlooks the foyer and has French doors to a balcony overlookng the front of the property. The luxurious master bedroom suite features a tray ceiling, his and hers walk-in closets and an impressive master bath with jacuzzi tub, double vanity and walk-in, glass-enclosed shower. A second bedroom enjoys a walk-in closet and en-suite bath, while two more bedrooms share a Jack-and-Jill style bath. 

Casual entertaining and leisure can be enjoyed in the finished walk out lower level featuring additional living space, bedroom and full bath. This versatile space can suit a vari­ety of needs such as in-law, guest or au pair accommodations, as well as a recreation room, home theater, office or gym. 

Additional features include a main level laundry, a three-car garage and a security system.

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Contact Information

Photo of Cheryl Scott-Daniels  Real Estate
Cheryl Scott-Daniels
CSD Select Homes
991 Post Rd East
Westport CT 06880
Fax: 866-806-6909