The Federal Stimulus Program is a plan enacted by the Obama Administration to get the economy back on track after the housing meltdown in 2008. The component of the Federal Stimulus Program that is relevant to the mortgage industry is HARP (Home Affordable Refinance Program).
Although it’s been around for some time, in August 2017 the Federal Housing Finance Agency, FHFA, announced they would extend it through December 2018. Are you one of the 143,000 homeowners that can still benefit from this great consumer oriented program?
The HARP program is designed for borrowers who have a high loan to value ratio on their property. Many homeowners suffered dramatically when housing values plummeted and they are still struggling to build equity. Not all areas of the country have recovered as robustly as others.
If you are still underwater or think you don’t have enough equity to make a refinance worthwhile it is to your advantage to contact a lender now to review your loan before this program expires in December 2018.
You must meet the following guidelines to be eligible:
- Current on your mortgage with no late payments
- Primary residence, 1 unit second home or 1-4 investment
- Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac loan
- Loan Originated before May 31, 2009
- LTV is greater that 80%
The number of homeowners who are underwater on their mortgage – meaning they owe a lender more than their home is worth – is still more than double what was normal in the years before the bubble according to a study done by Marketwatch.com. In this same article the author stated, “It may seem jarring that many homeowners still haven’t climbed above water so many years after the bubble burst, even in a housing market supposedly starved for inventory. And yet that doesn’t even account for the homeowners who have some equity, but not enough to make financial sense to sell their properties.”
The HARP program is certainly worth investigating before it ends. Although mortgage interest rates are climbing, they are still incredibly low and a refinance could make sense for many reasons that trump the rising rates.
Mortgage Equity Partners is a lender that offers HARP refinancing options, as well as a full portfolio of mortgage loan programs. Reach out to one of our professional loan officers or call 877-866-4511.