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  1. #1

    Freddie Mac HARP Mortgage Refinance Facts

    I still can't believe we successfully refinanced our home. I hope the following 411 helps other folks out there. Read on.

    After a short sale this year on an investment property (and settlement with our 2nd mortgage holder on our principal residence) marring our credit, I believed we would never be able to take advantage of current low rates and be able to refinance our 1st mortgage (principal residence).

    Out of curiosity, I contacted Chase (our current 1st mortgage holder) to inquire about HARP. Just in case they had a special program, because they already held our mortgage (I already knew we did not qualify for a traditional HARP refi with any other lender). I was very skeptical initially, because we've had terrible experiences with Chase, including the 2x they rejected us for HAMP. Low and behold, they did have a special streamlined HARP for current Chase loans, and after minimal fuss and about 40 days later, we signed loan docs yesterday to complete our refinance with a new low rate of 3.875% (15 yr fixed). Our previous rate was 6.125%.

    Some surprising facts regarding our successful Freddie Mac HARP refi: Although our credit was not in the toilet, it was pretty bad after the short sale the rolling late on the 2nd (dropped about 100 points). Also, no way in hell our DTI (debt-to-income) ratio would have passed muster with any bank on the planet. It was like 95% percent! However, because Chase was the current mortgage holder already, neither the bad credit nor the ridiculous DTI ratios were a factor. I'm still in shocked disbelief.

  2. #2
    Some important notes: Although we defaulted on both our investment property mortgages (short sold) and our 2nd, our 1st mortgage with Chase was NEVER late in all the time we held it (about 6 yrs). Also, our LTV was about 90% (not upside down) although our LO said 105% - 125% LTV still ok. Our loan amount was also conforming, not high balance or jumbo.

    Overall, we are extremely happy. It's good to know that banks can bend the rules slightly, on their own loans, to allow people to successfully complete HARP refis.

  3. #3
    Great story - thanks for sharing it. It certainly doesn't sound like a typical Chase story; I'm very surprised they cooperated, and am certainly glad you got it done. Congratulations!

  4. #4
    Thanks tomeason! It is quite unusual, actually extremely unusual, but it did happen to us. I hope this info might help others who are thinking (like we did) that there was no hope at all.

  5. #5
    That is not bending the rules, that is following the rules.That type of refi is standard for fannie and freddie loans, and all servicers are suppose to offer them to any customer who has been current for the past 12 payments. It is a non-qualifying loan except for the 12 months current qualifier.

  6. #6
    menace, Thanks for your informative post, as usual. What I find unusual in this instance is that it was Chase following the rules, and Chase following guidelines is indeed quite unusual and exceptional, as Chase normally does whatever it pleases, regardless of guidelines and criteria.


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