Federal Government Looks to Spread Awareness of Refinancing Options>PRWEB.COM NewswireChicago, IL PRWEB October 03, 2013The Federal Savings Bank is continuously informing current lien holders of various refinance opportunities. With refinance activity on the decline, the Federal Housing Finance Agency is doing all it can to spread awareness about the Home Affordable Refinance Program.However, theres more to the FHFAs awareness campaign than just spurring on mortgage activity. The government agency has said that too many Americans who are eligible to benefit from the program have not done so due to a lack of knowledge regarding HARP.”Theres a perception among some that youve got to be delinquent in order to have some government-sponsored program that can help you,” FHFA Acting Director Edward J. DeMarco told Bloomberg on September 23rd. “What we want to do is correct that misperception.”
In California, once the notice of default has been recorded, you have approximately 120 days to save your home before it is auctioned. Once you get the notice in the mail don’t waste any time!
Here are 5 things to do immediately….
- Call your lender and ask them what solutions they have. Banks are moving away from foreclosures and new programs are coming along all the time. The best way to be sure you have the latest information is to call the lender. If you want to keep your home, begin the process under as many avenues as are available, including non-profit programs.
- Find out who owns your mortgage. Even if your loan is with BofA, it could be owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac (Question #9 in FAQ), If it is, you may qualify for a government program and be able to refinance without an appraisal (HARP2), to modify your loan (HAMP), or to do short sale and get a cash incentive to help with relocation expenses. (HAFA).
- Get professional advice from your tax preparer and an attorney about your financial options and the effect a short sale would have on your finances.
- Operate on the 120 day timeline. This is the typical timeline from Notice of Default to foreclosure and then auction. In that 120 day period is your opportunity to a) get a loan modification consent from the bank, b) short sale your property, or c) find a way to bring your mortgage current.
- Contact a certified short sale Realtor, such as myself, if you want or need to sell your home. Get that ball rolling as soon as possible.
Until the Home Owner’s Bill of Rights takes effect on January 1, 2013, the banks are under no legal obligation to stop the foreclosure process, even if they have told you they would work with you on a loan modification.One last thing: That Notice of Default you got; it is public record. So, put your guard up regarding people who may try to contact you. Some of them may be legitimate, but some may be working a scam.
HARP 2.0: What it is; What it isn’t
October 26th, 2011 in CDPE by Alex Charfen
When the Obama Administration announced a series of changes to the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) early this week, our phones started ringing with inquiries from the media for our input concerning the impact. And we had even more questions about HARP during our CDPE Advanced Broadcast yesterday afternoon.
The new HARP is by no means a game changer.
Here’s essentially what we’ve had to say about the revamped government mortgage refinancing program:
HARP 2.0, as the media has started to refer to it, has some merit, but it’s scope is very limited and it will have little or no impact on foreclosures or the estimated 6.4 million homeowners nationwide who are behind on their mortgage payments. The new HARP just expands the net of those who were eligible for help under the original version.
HARP was created in April of 2009 to help borrowers whose loans were backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, but did not have enough equity or negative equity to refinance. Under the original version of HARP, borrowers who were current on their payments and owed up to 125 percent of the current value of their homes could refinance their mortgage.
The original HARP fell short of expectations. Over the past two and a half years, only 838,000 homeowners have benefited from the program. The new HARP has broadened the base with looser eligibility requirements.
Borrowers with FHA, Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac mortgages that were sold to Fannie or Freddie before May 31, 2009, will be able to refinance, no matter how far underwater they are. Banks will only have to verify that borrowers have made their last six payments, that they’ve haven’t missed more than one payment over the past year, and that they have a job or another source of regular income.
Other key changes:
- Appraisals are no longer required if there is a reliable automated valuation model (AVM)–a significant hurdle in the previous plan.
- Risk-based fees have been eliminated for borrowers who refinance to 15-year mortgages.
- Existing mortgage insurance coverage can be transferred much easier than under the original HARP.
While the new HARP won’t help homeowners who are behind on their payments and at risk for foreclosure, it is a welcome relief for homeowners who have been caught in the Catch-22 of not being able to refinance because they owe more on their mortgage than their home is worth, and at the same time, don’t qualify for a short sale or a loan mod because they are current on their payments and still have income and assets sufficient to cover their costs.
More money into the pockets of this segment will mean more dollars back into the economy, potentially heading off strategic defaults and keeping and stemming the tide of homes entering the foreclosure pipeline.