How can I refinance my mortgage when my home value is less than the loan value?

I'd like to take advantage of historic low rates and will go a long way towards lowering my monthly bills

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Answered by Chad Freeman, Branch ManagerPRO+ in Bethesda, MD
Thanks for the question. Hopefully you either have an actual appraisal, a real estate broker opinion, or you just have a good handle on property values in your area. I say this because for many home owners, a home value is based more on "a feeling" and not actual data.

There are a couple of options that you have available to you. The first, which is generally not the preferred option for most home owners, is that you place a sizeable cash contribution into the proposed refinance, thereby reducing the "loan-to-value".

A second and more favorable option for most home owners, is to see if you qualify for the HARP program. This stands for Home Affordable Refinance Program and it is a standard Fannie Mae/Freddie mac program that specifically addresses refinancing for home owners who are underwater. I have written about this here on Money Tips and you can find additional information at knowyouroptions.com. I highly recommend working with a qualified loan officer to research qualifying for this program.

Lastly, there could be some other creative options available to you such as obtaining a line of credit to pay down the current loan and bring the value in line with a refinance. Again, speaking to a qualified loan officer will go a long ay in understanding all of these options and seeing what may work best for you. Good luck. | 08.01.14 @ 14:56
Comments 2  
Jenna Dobkin — Thank you, Chad! This is a great place to start. | 08.01.14 @ 22:27
Johnny — More info on HARP: http://www.moneytips.com/what-is-a-harp-loan | 09.10.14 @ 01:53
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$commenter.renderDisplayableName() — {comment} | 12.08.16 @ 20:10
Answered by Barry Hill, Mortgage Broker in Santa Rosa, CA
If you haven't refinanced since June of 2006 then Google "Fannie Mae loan look up" or "Freddie Mac loan look up". Enter your info. If you are eligible, then it won't matter if you are upside down. You would be looking at a higher rate vs a standard loan, though. | 10.14.14 @ 18:37
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$commenter.renderDisplayableName() — {comment} | 12.08.16 @ 20:10
You do have options. From an FHA Streamline Refinance, the HARP Program and even VA Streamlines. Obviously there's more questions to be asked to determine the best option out there. Go talk with Home Loans For All. They'll be able to help you for sure. | 06.17.15 @ 18:09
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$commenter.renderDisplayableName() — {comment} | 12.08.16 @ 20:10
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