Want to lower your mortgage? | NevadaAppeal.com

Want to lower your mortgage?

StatePoint
The Home Affordable Refinance Program may help homeowners reduce monthly payments.
STATEPOINT |

Are you a homeowner who is current on your mortgage and looking to lower your interest rate? Alternatively, would you like to shorten your mortgage term and build equity faster?

You may be able to take advantage of a long standing federal program to save hundreds of dollars on your mortgage payment every month or shorten your mortgage term and save money in the long run.

The Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) is a unique program that helps certain homeowners refinance their mortgage to a more affordable monthly payment and at better terms. With HARP now extended through December 2016, homeowners across the country have more time to take advantage of this program to save money every month.

If you purchased a home before June 2009, have little or no equity in your home but are current on your mortgage payment (meaning no 30-day-plus late payments in the last six months and no more than one in the past 12 months), and the loan is owned by Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae, you may be eligible to refinance your mortgage through HARP.

More than 3.3 million Americans have taken advantage of HARP since 2009, saving them $200 on average per month. Here’s how you can take advantage of this program:

• Gather your basic financial information before you contact your mortgage company. You’ll need: Your latest mortgage statements, including information on a second mortgage (if applicable); and your current income details (paystub or income tax return).

• Find out if Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac owns your loan. In order to qualify for HARP, your loan must be owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. Contact your mortgage company or visit http://www.knowyouroptions.com/loanlookup or https://ww3.freddiemac.com/loanlookup/.

If your loan is owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, ask your lender if it is an approved HARP lender. Be prepared to provide the information necessary to verify your current source of income. If your lender is not an approved HARP lender, find out who is near you on the Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac websites.

• Go through the application, approval and closing process. If your lender determines you qualify for HARP, they will guide you through the process.

HARP has no appraisal requirements or loan-to-value limits, so you can apply regardless of how far your home may have fallen in value. Without this program, qualifying for refinancing can be virtually impossible for homeowners who are underwater.

Remember, the opportunity to get a HARP refinance expires December 31, 2016 and there is still time to take advantage of low mortgage rates.

Make 2015 the year you take the step to save money on your home loan. Call your lender to apply now and begin to save. For more information, visit http://www.HARP.gov.