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Academic English

“Refinancing Mortgage Loans”

Level: Topic: Speakers: Length:
difficult refinancing mortgages man 01:03

Pre-Listening Exercise

Taking out a loan is often the only way people can afford major investments or purchases such as a college education or home. However, what advantages are there to refinancing a mortgage loan at a lower interest rate? Use the Internet to learn more about this.


“get the ax” = be fired
“Justin got the ax at work yesterday, and now he’s really worried about paying his mortgage.”

“be loaded” = be rich, wealthy
He’s really loaded, so he can afford to make big house payments.”

Listening Exercise

A. Listen to the recording and answer the questions.

Post-Listening Exercise

Discuss with a partner the advantages and disadvantages of taking out loans to pay for expenses? Are there times when taking out loans is justified? Are there situations when you have to use credit cards to make purchases? If so, when? What are some basic steps to avoid getting into serious debt?

Online Investigation

At some point in our life, we might find ourselves in a situation where we need to take out a college student loan or a home mortgage loan, either for ourselves or for a family member. However, taking out a loan can be a confusing and complex process if you don’t know what to do. Use the Internet to find out the following basic factors to get you started:

  1. Are there some good reasons for which you might want to borrow money?
  2. What are some of the fees and other costs associated with taking out a loan?
  3. What are the penalties for not paying back a loan on time?
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