The Home Affordable Refinance Program, or HARP, can offer a viable home refinancing option to homeowners who owe close to or more on their mortgages than their homes are worth. For homeowners who have been unable to qualify for a traditional mortgage refinance due to a decline in their home's value, the HARP loan program may offer a solution. HARP allows eligible homeowners with little or no equity to refinance to lower interest rates and have more affordable payments.
Homeowners with existing mortgages that meet the following criteria may be eligible for the HARP loan program:
If you do qualify, the next step would be to submit an application through eLEND. The process will be very similar to that of a traditional refinance loan, but with much more flexible requirements when it comes to loan-to-value.
The loan-to-value ratio measures the amount of equity the homeowner has or will have in the property. Many refinance loans require at least 5 to 20% equity, but with HARP, homeowners may be able to qualify with zero or even negative equity (meaning that the loan amount is more than the current value of the property). Borrowers will still need to qualify based on credit history, income, and other factors.
HARP is set to expire on December 31, 2015.