WASHINGTON (4/12/13)--The life of a government mortgage financing program known as HARP--the Home Affordable Refinance Program--was extended by two years yesterday when the Federal Housing Finance Agency directed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to extend it to Dec. 31, 2015. The program was set to expire Dec. 31, 2013.
FHFA Acting Director Edward DeMarco called the HARP program a "useful tool for reducing risk," which has helped more than two million homeowners refinance their mortgages if held by Fannie or Freddie.
He announced that his agency soon will launch a nationwide campaign to inform more homeowners about HARP and its eligibility requirements and to motivate them to explore their options and utilize HARP before the program ends.
HARP was launched in 2009 to let troubled homeowners bypass a requirement that they have at least 20% equity in their home to be able to refinance their mortgages at lower rates. Late in 2011 changes were made to the program--removing certain restrictions--to help more underwater borrowers benefit from refinancing their home mortgages through HARP.
Use the resource link to access FHFA's Refinance Report.