Looking for Congress’ Mortgage Stimulus Program? Here is Why Fannie Mae’s New Refinance Option “RefiNow™” Could be a Better Choice
Under a directive from the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have expanded access to refinancing options for clients who meet certain low-income thresholds. Qualifying homeowners can now use a new refinance option to reduce their monthly housing costs and improve their financial situation.
Getting mortgage help starts by checking if your loan is owned by Fannie Mae. Fill in the information at the following link and take advantage of the current low-interest rate environment by refinancing your existing Fannie Mae-backed loans:
RefiNowTM is an affordable refinancing option by Fannie Mae available to all qualified borrowers who start their mortgage application on or after June 5, 2021. This program can only be used to refinance a one-unit primary residence. RefiNowTM helps homeowners by requiring a reduction in their interest rate by a minimum of 50 basis points and a savings of at least $50 in their monthly mortgage payment. Qualifying borrowers are guaranteed an interest rate reduction of 0.50% or more. For example, if your current interest rate is 4.5% and you qualify for Fannie Mae’s RefiNow program, your new interest rate would be 4.0% or possibly lower. If approved, the program estimates you could save up to $3,000.00 per year, or between $100.00–$250.00 per month. Borrowers may also receive a credit of up to $500.00 toward an appraisal on their property if it’s required.
According to the official Lender Letter, there are certain requirements to qualify for an existing Fannie Mae loan being refinanced, such as being seasoned at least 12 months but no more than 120 months and not being an existing high LTV refinance loan, DU Refi Plus® loan, or Refi Plus® loan. The existing loans must also not be subject to recourse, repurchase agreement, indemnification, outstanding repurchase demand, or credit enhancement.
The requirements for a new RefiNowTM loan include:
- have maximum LTV, CLTV, and HCLTV ratios as permitted in the Eligibility Matrix;
- have a loan limit that conforms to the general loan limits;
- be a limited cash-out refinance with: financed closing costs, prepaid items, and points that do not exceed $5,000, and cash out less than or equal to $250.00;
- have identical borrowers on the new loan as the existing loan;
- not be a Texas Section 50(a)(6) loan;
- not be subject to a temporary interest rate buydown.
Applicants also need to meet certain requirements to qualify for RefiNowTM :
- Their income must be less than or equal to 80% of the applicable Area Median Income;
(You can also check the Area Median Income at the following link: https://ami-lookup-tool.fanniemae.com/amilookuptool/)
- A FICO score of at least 620;
- A LTV or loan-to-value ratio up to 97%;
(the amount the applicant owes on their mortgage relative to the value of their property)
- A DTI or debt-to-income ratio of 65% or less;
(That means that less than 65% of the applicant’s monthly total income goes toward existing debts, including their current mortgage)
- No missed mortgage payment in the past 6 months (or only one missed mortgage payment in the past 12 months);
- At least 3% existing equity in the applicant’s home.
The RefiNowTM program offers significant savings for homeowners, so do your research and take advantage of lower interest rates. Consult a loan officer or mortgage broker about your financial situation and get more specific advice.