Harp 2.0, We Answer Confused Homeowners Questions

HARP 2 Refinancing

Harp 2.0 has confused homeowners seeking refinancing which have led to the outpour of question from our readers.  Below are some of the answers to the common questions our readers were asking about HARP 2.0 and refinancing.

Am I required to refinance with the same lender I did my original loan?
Under HARP 2.0, you’re not required to refinance your mortgage with the same lender who’s currently servicing it.
Smaller lenders seem to be more willing than some of the larger ones to do HARP refinances on mortgages they did not originate. Mortgage brokers, who work with multiple lenders, have it easier in helping you identify other lenders who may be willing to take on your loan.

Can you refinance an investment property or a second home under HARP 2

Yes you can use the HARP 2 program to refinance underwater or low-equity mortgage on either a second home or an investment property of 1-4 units, as well as on your primary residence.

Why only Fannie and Freddie mortgages qualify for HARP 2.0
HARP 2.0 is limited to Fannie and Freddie loans  because both companies fell in government receivership during the market crash. Because of this the government can tell them what rules to follow when refinancing mortgages. Since HARP 2.0 is run through Fannie and Freddie, it can’t be used to refinance mortgages backed by strictly private lenders.

Can you qualify for Harp 2.0 if you have a VA or FHA loan?
Sorry, not under Harp 2. But there is help if you have a VA or FHA loan, you may be able to do a streamline refinance without an appraisal.

How do I know if I qualify for the HARP 2.0 loan?
There are many factors but here are some basics: If you’re loan is currently owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac (we are not talking who you pay your loan to) , the loan was originated before May of 2009, you’ve made your last 12 mortgage payments on time with maybe just 1 30 day late payment and can verify your income, you should qualify. You most likely will not need an appraisal because the program has no limit to the loan to value or combines loan to value.

For HARP 2.0 what documents are needed?
It’s a full doc loan. Tax returns, W2’s, bank statements, pay stubs, etc.

Do you have to have good credit for HARP 2.0 loan?
Credit is checked but they are mainly concerned with the last 12 months of mortgage payments

What fees are associated with HARP 2.0?
Nothing extra to you except that the rates will be slightly higher than “normal” loans.

Can you qualify for HARP 2.0 if you are in an arm?
Yes

What are the consumer benefits of HARP 2.0 for consumer?
Cheaper mortgage payments!

If you are unemployed do can qualify for HARP 2.0?
No

Can Harp 2.0 loan be for people who are not underwater?
Yes, again, speak to a qualified mortgage broker that can determine the best route for your situation.

Is Wells Fargo and other major banks starting Harp 2.0 now?
You do not have to go back to your current mortgage provider (Wells, BofA, etc.). In fact, they may be the hardest place to go to since they are a big bureaucracy. Contact a mortgage broker who will evaluate your situation and put you in the best program. They will be with you every step of the way


When will HARP 2.0 Expire?
HARP is presently set to expire after Dec. 31, 2013.  For more information, visit the Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac web sites at www.Fanniemae.com or www.Freddiemac.com.

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Comments

  1. Doug Smith says

    Your FAQ is incorrect on at least one point – you DO NOT have to be employed to qualify for HARP and there is no income verification unless the new payment will be 20% higher than your old one.

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