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Home Affordable Refinance Program Q & A

Q) What is the Home Affordable Refinance Program? (HARP)

A) This is part of the Making Home Affordable program and both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have programs to help homeowners who are upside down on their homes qualify for a low interest rate mortgage. Upside down means that a homeowner owes more than the home is worth on the market.

Q) How do I know if my loan qualifies for a HARP loan?

A) Both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have lookup tools for their databases. Click here for the Fannie Mae lookup tool and click here for the Freddie Mac lookup tool. (both open in new window)

Q) I'm current on my mortgage. Will refinancing with a HARP loan help me?

A) Eligible homeowners who have made their loan payments on time and are current on their mortgages but have been unable to take advantage of today's lower interest rates because their homes have decreased in value may now have the opportunity to refinance.

Q) What are the parameters of these programs?

A) Under the Fannie Mae DU Refi Plus program, you may refinance at 175% of your market value if the home is your primary residence and a single family home (SFR). Condominiums are restricted to 125% LTV. You may resubordinate any existing 2nd mortgage with no upper limit restriction, however, the second mortgage holder must agree to resubordinate and you must demonstrate you can meet the terms of the new first mortgage. Thus you will keep your existing 2nd mortgage. Under the program, a 1st and 2nd mortgage may not be combined. If your current loan has an adjustable rate mortgage, the maximum new first loan is limited to 105% LTV, and any second mortgage holder can resubordinate with no upper limit on CLTV..

Q) What if the qualifying loan isn't on a primary residence?

A) If it is your secondary home, the maximum loan is restricted to 125%. If it is an investment property then the maximum loan is restriced to 105%. Any secondary financing must be resubordinated.

Q) I already refinanced once under HARP. Can I refinance again to to reduce my rate again?

A) No. This is not allowed on either program.

Q) Can I get cash out on a HARP loan?

A) No. This is not allowed on either program.

Q) I was late on my mortgage in the last 12 months. Can I still qualify?

A) It is possible to qualify with only 1 30 day late in the last 12 months, (not in the last 6 months) however it will depend on what the automated underwriting findings say. The only way to find out is to apply for a HARP loan and have it run through the automated underwriting system. Usually homeowners who have fallen behind on their payments will not qualify. To find out if you qualify, please complete a loan application and we will run you through the desktop underwriting system.

Q) I put 20% down when I bought my home. Will I now have to pay mortgage insurance?

A) No. If your current mortgage does not have any MI then the new loan will not have it either.

Q) Can I refinance an investment/rental property with HARP?

Yes, you can refinance an investment/rental property with HARP, but only if the home was originally financed as a primary residence. You cannot refinance with a HARP loan a home that was originally an investment property and is still considered a rental.

Q) Can I refinance a second/vacation home with HARP?

Yes, you can refinance an second/vacation property with HARP, but only if the home was originally financed as an second/vacation property. You can’t refinance with a HARP loan a home that was originally a primary residence and is now considered a second home.

Q) What kind of interest rates are avaialble with HARP?

A) HARP loans have rates which are close to the conventional loan rates. Programs exist for the 30 yr fixed, 15 yr fixed and ARM products as well. Give us a call for a mortgage quote, or click here to receive a mortgage quote on a HARP loan.

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