i turn REALTY into REALiTY

New HARP Guidelines

Now May Be The Time To Refinance Your Home!

Now May Be The Time To Refinance Your Home!

On Tuesday, The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA)  announced changes to the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) in an effort to help eligible borrowers who may benefit from refinancing their mortgage. As a result of the announcement, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will be making the following changes, noted below.  These changes are designed to assist borrowers who have demonstrated an acceptable payment history on their existing Fannie Mae / Freddie Mac mortgage loans, but may not have been able to refinance in the past, due to their home appraising for lower than the amount the borrowers currently owe.

The Changes:

-Fannie Mae / Freddie Mac are removing the maximum loan to value (LTV) ratio limit for Refi Plus mortgage loans. No longer is the limit for the LTV set at 125% of the home’s worth. There will be no cap to the amount owed  vs. the appraised value of the home.
-Mortgage loans with previous late payments will now be excepted…  provided there have been no late payments on the mortgage in the past 12 months.
-Fannie Mae is removing the requirement that the borrower (on the new loan) meet the standard waiting period and re-establishment of credit criteria following a bankruptcy or foreclosure.

Is My Current Loan Eligible For a Refinance?

In order to take advantage of these changes to the HARP program, your CURRENT loan must be held by a Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac investor. You can determine whether your mortgage is owned by either Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae by checking the following websites:
Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae.

When Will These Changes Take Effect?

These changes do not go into effect until December 1st, 2011, and you may not be able to actually close the loan prior to March 1st, 2012, but that is currently being determined. There are a few other parameters that are still unclear, and you may wish to check with your personal loan officer for the latest updates.

What do I do now?

If you believe these changes may benefit you, contact your loan officer ASAP.  Rates remain very low and these new guidelines will open up refinancing opportunities for many people.  This current economy has affected many people, but there are some signs that things are beginning to get better.  This new change to the HARP is certainly one step in the right direction.

Many thanks to Troy Chambers with The Legacy Group for providing me with this update.  You can contact him at (425) 818-3785 or email him at troyc@legacyg.com if you have additional questions.

When REALiTY BiTES, Bite Back!

Tags: , , ,

Leave a Reply