More borrowers can afford to meet their mortgage repayments when they avail of the government’s loan modification program and take advantage of HARP refinance rates. The interest rates extended to refinancing borrowers under the HARP refinancing program are lower than those of other refinancing options are. The government has likewise mandated cuts in terms of lender fees and charges so that these savings can be passed on to the borrowers as well. For as long as the refinancing borrowers meet the guidelines set by the HARP refinancing program, they can get into the program in order to make their mortgage repayments more affordable. With this measure, the government hopes to curb mortgage delinquency and write off figures by getting more underwater borrowers into the program. Eligible borrowers can take advantage of this refinancing program until December 31, 2013.
HARP refinance rates are among the lowest in the market that borrowers who are nearing delinquency can take advantage of. Under the relaxed refinancing requirements and underwriting policies, even those who might not be able to take loan modification options under normal terms can opt to have their mortgages refinanced. The resulting modified mortgage loan should be more affordable and manageable for these borrowers, mitigating any risks of default. Finance experts, though, would advise borrowers to look at the entire picture and make computations as to the other costs associated with modifying their existing mortgage loans. The HARP federal program is ideal for those borrowers who are still classified as current in their loan repayments but are already experiencing problems trying to refinance their mortgages after the value of their properties have dropped.
To qualify for the HARP refinancing program and to take advantage of HARP refinance rates, the existing loan for the property in question should have been acquired and guaranteed by Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae on or before May 31, 2009. The cap that was originally set with respect to the loan-to-value ratio of the property mortgaged has been lifted under the expanded coverage of the HARP refinancing program. This allows even those whose property’s values have considerably dropped beyond the previous 125% loan-to-value ratio cap to get into the program as well. Furthermore, income-challenged households are also made eligible in the expanded HARP refinancing program when the federal program’s policies with regard to income and credit requirements were relaxed. These relaxed guidelines have made HARP refinance rates more accessible and affordable for those borrowers who are in desperate need of refinancing their existing mortgages.