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Making Home Affordable…if you qualify!

Article by Elin M Bullmann

Making Home Affordable is part of President Obama’s comprehensive strategy to get the housing market back on track. Through the Making Home Affordable Program, up to 9 million American families may be eligible to refinance or modify their loans to a payment that is affordable now and into the future.

The problem is that millions of American families won’t qualify. Yes, on the surface it sounds like everyone’s got a new lease on life, but let’s look at the details.

Eligible borrowers who are current on their mortgages but have been unable to take advantage of today’s lower interest rates because their homes have decreased in value, may now have the opportunity to refinance. Through the Home Affordable Refinance Program, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will allow the refinancing of mortgage loans that they own or that they placed in mortgage backed securities.
Now that’s sounds good right, well only if your loan is backed or owned by Fannie or Freddie and if it’s not you don’t qualify.

You can find out if you have a Fannie or Freddie backed loan through the following links:

1-800-7FANNIE (8am to 8pm EST).
www.fanniemae.com/loanlookup

Freddie Mac
1-800-FREDDIE (8am to 8pm EST)

www.freddiemac.com/mymortgage

Let’s say your loan is backed by either Fannie or Freddy, if you were more than 30 days late on a payment in the last 12 months you don’t qualify.

The biggest problem facing American families is that their house is worth much less than they paid for it and in many cases less than they owe. Home values have been dropping for 2 years and left many no choice but, to “walk away”.

I owe more than my property is worth. Do I still qualify to refinance under the Making Home Affordable Program?

Eligible loans will include those where the first mortgage will not exceed 105% of the current market value of the property. For example, if your property is worth $ 200,000 but you owe $ 210,000 or less on your first mortgage you may qualify. The current value of your property will be determined after you apply to refinance. However, if you bought your house within the last 3 years, you likely owe much more than your house is worth today and you won’t qualify.

How do I apply for a Home Affordable Refinance?

You should call your mortgage servicer or lender and ask about the Home Affordable Refinance application process. The number is on your monthly mortgage bill or coupon book. Please be patient. Lenders and servicers are implementing the program now and it may take time before they are ready to process all applications. In the meantime, it will help your lender and speed up the application process if you gather some information and documents before you call.
Additionally, beginning April 4, 2009, borrowers whose loans are owned or securitized by Fannie Mae may also apply through any Fannie Mae approved lender.

Elin Bullmann is the author and instructor of “How to Survive Foreclosure or Avoid it Altogether” a 200+ page eBook covering every aspect you need to be aware of when facing foreclosure. Dozens of experts were interviewed for their best advice and most serious warnings on foreclosure, pre-foreclosure, foreclosure postponement, loan modification, short sale, bankruptcy versus foreclosure, tax, and legal tactics.

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