FHFA Offers New Streamlined Refi Product, Extends HARP Through September 2017

August 25, 2016

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (GSEs) will implement a new refinance offering aimed at borrowers with high loan-to-value (LTV) ratios. The new refinance offering will provide liquidity for borrowers who are current on their mortgage but are unable to refinance through traditional programs because their LTV ratio exceeds the GSE’s maximum limits.

"Providing a sustainable refinance opportunity for high LTV borrowers who have demonstrated responsibility by remaining current on their mortgage makes financial sense both for borrowers and for the Enterprises," said FHFA Director Melvin L. Watt. "This new offering will give borrowers the opportunity to refinance when rates are low, making their mortgages more affordable and thus reducing credit risk exposure for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac."

The new high LTV streamlined refinance offering will not be available to borrowers until October 2017. Because of this, the FHFA is extending the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) through Sept. 30, 2017 to ensure that high LTV borrowers have a refinance option. According to FHFA, more than 3.4 million homeowners have refinanced their mortgage through HARP.  More than 300,000 U.S. homeowners could still refinance through HARP.

Contact ALTA at 202-296-3671 or communications@alta.org.