The Great Recession of 2008–2009 hit hard in many business and industries. It was especially damaging to the real estate world, including homeowners. Many families experienced great hardships, as the values of their home significantly dropped in a short amount of time. This effectively destroyed equity in many homeowners’ homes and put people in seemingly hopeless situations where it seemed they’d never be able to sell their homes. The effects of this crisis still today with homeowners. Fortunately, there is help. With a HARP loan, homeowners may refinance their mortgages and get more favorable rates, even if they owe more than their homes are currently worth. Here are some more highlights of this refinance option.
Helps the Underwater Homeowner
Government sponsored, the HARP home loan is designed to give relief to homeowners whose current mortgage balances are higher than the appraised value of their homes. Instead of feeling hopeless, homeowners now have the option of refinancing to lower rates and payments, thus helping them pay down their mortgage and get their heads above water. For those eligible, this makes possible what previously seemed out of reach and impossible.
Qualification 1: No Late Payments
Paying mortgages on time is important for anyone regardless of the loan type. Missed or late payments will harm credit, result in late fees and even lead to foreclosures. When comes to a HARP loan, you can only qualify if you’ve been good about making your payments by the due date. Any homeowners who have one or more late payments in the past 12 months will not be eligible for HARP. But if you have a clean record in this area, you could be in good shape to benefit from this type of loan.
Qualification 2: Must be a Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae Home
Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae are government sponsored home loans designed to help make home ownership more affordable and available for people. Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae purchases home loans on the secondary market, pools these mortgages together and then sells them to investors. If your home is a Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae home, you’ve met an important qualification for HARP.
Qualification 3: Not in Foreclosure
The dreaded foreclosure is undesirable for homeowners, but sometimes it becomes inevitable or necessary when homeowners can no longer make their payments. Foreclosure severely damages one’s credit and causes loss of home ownership. The foreclosure process can be long, but if it has started, you cannot be a candidate for a HARP loan. On other words, you need to be current on your loan and in good standing.
Qualification 4: New to HARP
HARP is a wonderful program that has helped numerous homeowners across the U.S. get their mortgages back on track. However, if you’ve used this program before, you aren’t eligible to benefit from it again. However, if you haven’t taken advantage of it in the past, call today to get more information and get out from under water.
There is a way to escape the shackles of negative equity. With a HARP loan, you can have your mortgage where you want to be again.