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HARP 2.0 Gains Momentum in Colorado

By: Morris Newman | September 13th, 2012

More than 20% of homes in Colorado are underwater. They’re not flooded, but rather their owners owe more on their mortgages than homes are currently worth. For many Coloradans, the HARP 2.0 refinance program may be the way to refinance and turn their upside-down mortgage finances right side up again.

The rapid fall in home prices following the financial meltdown of 2007-08 left many people with underwater mortgages. Being underwater is considered a red flag to lenders, economists and other experts, because underwater home owners are the group at greatest risk of losing their homes. Homeowners who are underwater are often unable to refinance their homes, because most lenders won’t refinance a home that’s worth less than the value of the unpaid principal on the mortgage.

HARP 2.0 is able to refinance homes for more than 100% of the loan-to-value (LTV), that is, the loan amount in relation to the home value (LTV). In many cases, HARP borrowers opt to borrow more than 125% of the LTV. In this way, homeowners can refinance at current rock-bottom interest rates, while making it easier to hold on their homes and wait for the market to slowly recover.

The goal of HARP 2.0 is to strengthen homeownership. Communities and home values both suffer when people lose or abandon their homes, creating vacant and abandoned properties. Refinancing underwater mortgages is a “win-win-win,” that is good for homeowners, their neighbors and the housing market at large.

To be eligible for HARP, the home loan must be owned by either Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac, the “super agencies” that own the majority of mortgages in the country. Borrowers must also have a good payment history. On average, homeowners can see their payments fall by about $250 monthly. That’s $3,000 annually, or enough for a family vacation—and the peace of mind of being able to hold on to one’s house.

FreeRateUpdate.com surveys more than two dozen wholesale and direct lenders’ rate sheets to determine the most accurate mortgage rates available to well qualified consumers at a standard 0.7-1.0% point origination fee.


Latest HARP Mortgage News April 16th, 2014

  • FHA Loans, Refis Cast a Long Shadow in Colorado’s Capitol City

    By: Morris Newman | September 13th, 2012

    FHA mortgages are popular in metro Denver, where the federally backed loans are used in more than one in four of all home-purchase loans. Currently, 27.8% of all home purchases made in the first half of 2012 used FHA loans, … Continue reading

  • Colorado Mortgage Rates: Mortgage Rates in Colorado Stable After Recent Hikes

    By: Vanessa Rodriguez | January 24th, 2011

    Mortgages rates in Colorado were up at the start of the week. Colorado mortgage rates were 0.125 percent higher than last week’s rates. A 30-year fixed rate conforming mortgage in Colorado has a mortgage rate of 4.625 percent. A 15-year fixed rate conforming mortgage has a rate of 4.000 percent. A Colorado 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage, the mortgage rate is 3.125 percent. Those Colorado borrowers who exceed the qualification standards can expect to obtain a home mortgage loan at these low mortgage rates with only 0.7 to 1.0 origination points. Continue reading