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HARP Refinances Hold Steady in Q2

refinance-appLoans refinanced through the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) held steady for the second quarter of 2015.

According to the Federal Housing Finance Agency's (FHFA) Refinance Report, the total number of loans refinanced through HARP in the second quarter was nearly the same as the number recorded in first quarter.

FHFA's report found that second quarter HARP refinances completed between April and June reached 31,561, a difference of 87 from the 31,648 HARP refinances completed from January through March. Additionally, HARP volume represented 5 percent of total refinance volume in the second quarter of 2015.

A total of 3,333,654 million borrowers have refinanced their homes through HARP since the program began in 2009, the report stated.

The report found that borrowers with loan‐to‐value ratios greater than 105 percent accounted for 24 percent of the volume of HARP loans from January 2015 to June 2015, while 7 percent of the loans refinanced through HARP had a loan‐to‐value ratio greater than 125 percent in June.

In addition, 29 percent of underwater borrowers' HARP refinances were for shorter‐term 15‐ and 20‐year mortgages, which build equity faster than traditional 30‐year mortgages. Florida and Georgia and borrowers appear to be doing the most refinancing, occupying 13 or more percent of total refinances in June.

FHFA recorded lower delinquency rates for borrowers who refinanced through HARP compared to borrowers eligible for HARP who did not refinance through the program.

harpFHFA estimates that more than 578,000 borrowers nationwide still have a financial incentive to refinance through the program as of March.

The top five states with the highest numbers of "in-the-money" borrowers, or those that meet the basic HARP eligibility requirements, have a remaining mortgage balance of $50,000 or more, have a remaining term of greater than 10 years, and an interest rate at least 1.5 percent higher than current market rates, that remain eligible for a HARP refinance are Florida, Ohio, Illinois, Michigan, and Georgia.

Nationwide, these borrowers could save, on average, as much as $200 per month on their mortgage payments, or $2,400 per year.

Click here to view the FHFA's Q2 Refinance Report. 

About Author: Xhevrije West

Xhevrije West is a writer and editor based in Dallas, Texas. She has worked for a number of publications including The Syracuse New Times, Dallas Flow Magazine, and Bellwethr Magazine. She completed her Bachelors at Alcorn State University and went on to complete her Masters at Syracuse University.
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