November 2011 HARP II Eligibility Requirements Announcement

by Ask Kate - November 16, 2011 - Updated December 20th

Ask Kate reports November 2011 HARP II Eligibility Requirements Announcement and updated December 20th: Celebrate with historically low interest rates! Making Home Affordable Refinance Program released further guidelines making it easier for homeowners to qualify for a mortgage refinance through HARP II.



Get the skinny on the HARP II Eligibility Requirements Announcement by 1) Overview, 2) Benefits, 3) Features, 4) Pre-Qualification, and 5) Qualification at Get-Your-Best-Mortgage-rate.com as reported by Ask Kate.

Overview to November 15, 2011 HARP II Eligibility Requirements Announcement

Ask Kate at Get-Your-Best-Mortgage-Rate.com
1. Making Home Affordable Refinance Program helps homeowners with a Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae mortgage (conventional loans) who owe more than their home is worth.

December 20, 2011 Update

This is often referred to as being underwater or having negative equity.

2. Homeowners are not required to use their savings to reduce their mortgage balance in order to qualify.

3. Homeowners are not required to add private mortgage insurance if the current home loan does not have PMI.

4. Homeowners may use ANY participating HARP lender with very few exceptions which will be spelled out clearly in the next couple of weeks.

5 Benefits to November 15, 2011 HARP II Eligibility Requirements Announcement

1. Lower mortgage rates and fees.

2. Negative equity and low appraised values for fixed rate applicants are no longer considered.

3. More homeowners with bankruptcy and foreclosure history may qualify.

4. Many HARP borrowers will not need an appraisal. (For those who do, keep in mind that appraised value no longer excludes fixed rate applicants.)

5. Available to owner occupied, second (vacation) homes, investment properties, and condos.

December 20, 2011 Update

4 Features to November 15, 2011 HARP II Eligibility Requirements Announcement

1. Loan-to-value (LTV) is no longer considered if you are refinancing into a fixed rate mortgage. (Maximum 105% LTV cut-off for adjustable rate mortgages remains.)

2. Loan terms of 20 years or less will not have an adjustment to the fees.

3. Loan terms greater than 20 years will have a maximum .75% cap to the fees.

This means HARP II interest rates could be lower than offered in a traditional refinance process!

4. HARP II exempts homeowners from the 4 year waiting period following a bankruptcy and 7 year waiting period following a foreclosure.

December 20, 2011 Update

4 Pre-Qualification Guidelines to November 15, 2011 HARP II Eligibility Requirements Announcement

1. Your mortgage was sold to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac on or before May 31, 2009.

2. Your monthly house payments are not paid late in the most recent six month period - months 1-6.

3. Your monthly house payments cannot include more than one 30 day late in the previous six month period - months 7-12.

4. Your mortgage loan-to-value must be greater than 80%.

December 20, 2011 Update

4 Qualification Guidelines to November 15, 2011 HARP II Eligibility Requirements Announcement

1. If your new mortgage payment EXCEEDS your current payment by 20%, your...
  • Credit score must be 620 or greater.

  • Debt to income ratio must be under 45%.

  • Income will need to be verified.

  • Cash used for the refinance (if any) must have the source verified.
2. Homeowners must benefit from lower monthly house payments or a stable loan product.

3. One HARP loan per property unless your FNMA HARP refi was between March and May, 2009.

4. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac requirements can vary (ever-so) slightly. Check with your originator to see if this affects your eligibility.

December 20, 2011 Updated Qualification Guidelines to HARP II Eligibility Requirements Announcement

If your new mortgage payment does NOT exceed your current payment by 20%, in many cases...
  • Fannie Mae's standard minimum credit score requirement is waived.

  • Debt ratio maximums are eliminated.

  • Traditional income verification is not necessary although verification of employment and source of non-employment income will be performed.

  • The lender is not required to verify assets.
What you are seeing is Fannie Mae holding lenders less responsible for meeting additional standards and thus a more relaxed underwriting atmosphere between mortgage companies and homeowners.

A big announcement regarding HARP II Refinances from the Obama Administration is scheduled for mid-March, 2012. But in between, I'll be posting more updates.

April 2013 guideline updates for HARP 2.0 Loan Program!

Easy steps to writing your representatives! Who to contact about the HARP program.

So check back often at my Best Mortgage Rate Blog. And watch for Ask Kate notifications in your email like this one - Update on Borrower and Lender Paid Mortgage Insurance for HARP II Refinancing.

Wondering if your Mortgage was sold to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac on or before May 31, 2009?

Here is how to find out:

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Best wishes,

Ask Kate
Back to more Ask Kate Questions and Answers at
Loan Modification - Home Affordable HARP and HAMP - Strategic Default - Real Estate Short Sale - FHA Short Refinance from November 2011 HARP II Eligibility Requirements Announcement

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