"This program is allowing you to refinanace -- regardless of the value of your home -- down to a current market rate," Mike Metz of Sun State Loans explained.
Those current rates for a 30-year fixed mortgage are running in the 4-percent range. That's about 2 percent less than the rates many borrowers currently have, according to Metz.
There are four basic criteria you have to meet to be eligible for HARP 2.0.
- The existing mortgage must be guaranteed by Fannie Mae or by Freddie Mac
- The existing mortgage must have been securitized by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac prior to June 1, 2009
- The mortgage payment history must be perfect going back 6 months
- The mortgage payment history may not include more than one 30-day late payment going back 12 months
It's important to remember that HARP 2.0 is not a loan modification program. For that, you have to go through your loan servicer, the company or bank to which you make your mortgage payments. HARP 2.0, which runs through Dec. 31, 2013, is strictly about refinancing to lower interest rates.
For more information about HARP 2.0, visit www.HarpPhoenix.com.