The Home Affordable Refinance Program, or HARP, has been a HUGE source of refinancing loans for our clients. It has allowed us to refinance homes for thousands of clients, helping them achieve their goals, whether they want to lower their payments, lower their commitment in term of years, or simply lock into a fixed rate. HARP loans are a federal program that allows home owners that have their loans through Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae to obtain a newer, more affordable home loan through HARP, helping them to keep their family in their home. Refinancing with a HARP loan is easy, with the systems that we have in place it is simply most streamlined process in the industry.
The HARP Loan program was originated in March, 2009 by the Federal Housing Finance Agency to help home owners that may be underwater or behind on their loans, families that were in danger of being foreclosed upon and unable to get out from under the loans because of the dropping home values caused by the massive market correction. However, this seemed unfair to those who had been current on their loans, and were making payments on their homes, despite the high rates. HARP 2.0 then followed, allowing those borrowers who weren’t underwater on their loans to refinance at these more favorable rates, in December, 2011. The requirements also loosened, allowing those who owed more than 125% to refinance without getting Private Mortgage Insurance. The mortgage lender was now guaranteed to not be held for fraud on the original loan, which led to more lenders signing up for the program. More often than not, we close HARP loans without even needing an appraisal at all.