Refinance now? New HARP Guidelines Released

The government’s new HARP 2.0 Refinance Program is available to U.S. homeowners as of March 17, 2012. 

What Is HARP?

HARP was started in April 2009. It goes by several names. The government calls it HARP, as in Home Affordable Refinance Program. The program is also known as the Making Home Affordable plan, the Obama Refi plan, DU Refi +, and Relief Refinance.
In order to be eligible for the HARP refinance program :
  1. Your loan must be backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.
  2. Your current mortgage must have a securitization date prior to June 1, 2009
If you meet these two criteria, you may be HARP-eligible. If your mortgage is FHA, USDA or a jumbo mortgage, you are not HARP-eligible.

Basics of the new guidelines:

  • No  limit to loan to value
  • All properties owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac are eligible as long as they are still used for what they were originally financed as (a primary residence converted to an investment property doesn’t qualify)
  • An investor that has recently lost a property to foreclosure or short sale and wants to refinance his others will be able to
  • Maximum cash back is $250
  • Closing costs may be financed into the new loan
  • Full documentation is still required (verifying income and assets)
  • Current loan must have been originated prior to May 31, 2009
  • Minor rate adjustment

Contact your mortgage broker or banker for more information.


  1. Unknown on March 22, 2012 at 6:07 pm

    This is good info, won’t work for everybody, but will be worth giving a look. It would be like getting free money in a way.

  2. CRC on March 22, 2012 at 6:29 pm

    Especially if you are underwater on it . . .