HARP – Sweet music for those looking to refinance

Many homeowners today are taking advantage of historically low interest rates, unfortunately with the recent downturn in the housing market some homeowners cannot qualify as their home value is lower than what they actually owe on their mortgage. For these people, a HARP mortgage could be a great option.

HARP, the Home Affordability Refinance Program, was established to help homeowners take advantage of lower rates and/or terms of their current mortgage and more stable mortgage products regardless of what the value of their home it. Just like any mortgage program, there are list of qualifications the homeowner must meet to qualify and the loan will go through an underwriting process.

Realizing the value that the HARP program offered home owners, FNB-Fox Valley participated in a training program to familiarize our team on the benefits provided.

You may be eligible for HARP if you meet the following criteria:

  • Your mortgage must be owned or guaranteed by Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae. You can check this on their websites:
  • Your mortgage must have been sold to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac on or before May 31, 2009.
  • Your mortgage cannot have been refinanced under HARP previously unless it is a Fannie Mae loan that was refinanced under HARP from March-May, 2009.
  • Your current loan-to-value (LTV) ratio must be greater than 80%.
  • You must be current on your mortgage at the time of the refinance, with a good payment history in the past 12 months.

Your current mortgage servicer can help you determine the first two criteria or you can contact a FNB – Fox Valley mortgage lender and we would be happy to assist you. HARP refinance loans require a loan application, underwriting process and refinance fees will apply.

This program does end on December 31, 2013. For more information about HARP and other housing programs that have been designed to help homeowners in today’s market, please visit www.makinghomeaffordable.gov

FNB – Fox Valley has already helped homeowners take advantage of the HARP program. If you have been turned down from another financial institution because your home value has dropped and they did not mention the HARP program (and you meet the eligibility criteria), we would love to help you get into a better rate, term and more stable and affordable mortgage product. For more information, please contact us at mortgages@fnbfoxvalley.com, visit our website at www.fnbfoxvalley.com or call one of our mortgage lenders at 920.720.6900.

Karri Bedor
VP-Mortgage Banking Manager