Helpful Mortgage And Real Estate Advice

Save Our Housing Economy: Help Encourage HARP Refinance Before Deadline

By on July 1, 2014 in Mortgage Programs

Save our housing economy
Between 2013 and 2014, home refinancing numbers dropped 56 percent, showing a market halt to an otherwise recovering housing industry. One of the key factors may have been rising interest rates, reflecting values based on credit scores. Rates were even smaller in 2012 at slightly lower than 4 percent.

The need for refinancing is still great today. The federal government is marketing their HARP, or Home Affordable Refinance Program, to the masses to increase refinancing applications and boost the national economy.

Raising Awareness

The federal government’s head loan regulator for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac is currently forming town hall meetings in various cities for HARP awareness. With many lending options in the news, consumers may be confused about their refinancing options. Being understandably wary, consumers are simply struggling each month to pay the mortgage without any relief.

The Savings

Homeowners that don’t take advantage of HARP’s savings are missing out on a huge financial opportunity. As much as $250 each month can be cut from mortgages, freeing up funds for other essentials, such as college or retirement savings. The savings stem from several lending strategies backed by HARP. Lenders may reduce interest rates, cut principal down or extend the payment term lengths, for example. The goal is to keep homeowners in their home with ample funds to pay for life’s basics. Every month shouldn’t be a major financial struggle.

How To Qualify

Homeowners don’t need to jump through hoops to obtain a HARP loan. They simply visit their lender and ask about the program. The original mortgage must be from June 2009 or before that date. The property cannot have more than 20 percent equity during HARP processing either. Loans must also be Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae types to qualify as well. Lenders go over the specifics with homeowners to find the best solution within HARP. It benefits both the homeowner and bank when mortgages are easily paid on-time.

Deadline Is Approaching

In 2009, HARP began its helpful refinancing process for millions of Americans. In fact, nearly 3.1 million people have benefited since HARP’s inception. When HARP was improved in 2012, even more people qualified and modified their loans. There is no longer a cap to homeowners loan-to-value ratio with this refinance program. Homeowners can owe more than their property is worth and still obtain a HARP loan in most cases. However, HARP is set to expire December 2015. It’s critical for any applicants to start their HARP process immediately to reap the program benefits. Entire families may save their home for generations to come.

Millions of Americans benefit substantially from HARP refinancing loans, helping them free money for other pursuits. Neighborhoods blossom into growing economies with some equity built into each home. It’s time for HARP to help all homeowners who qualify to create a healthier economy.

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About the Author

About the Author: Jessica Lucas is the managing editor for Mortgage Home Base, a top real estate finance blog dedicated to helping borrowers and home buyers understand the home loan process. Follow Jessica on Google +, and share your comments here. .
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