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HARP Is Back!

Nov 02, 2016

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) has just announced it is extending HARP through Sept. 30, 2017.

“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.”

In order to be eligible for the new high LTV program, the FHFA stated that borrowers must fit the following requirements:

►Must not have missed any mortgage payments in the previous six months.

►Must not have missed more than one payment in the previous 12 months.

►Must have a source of income.

►Must receive a benefit from the refinance in one of the following ways:

►Reduced monthly principal and interest payment.

►Lower interest rate.

►Shorter amortization term.

►More stable mortgage product, such as moving from an adjustable-rate mortgage to a fixed-rate mortgage.

How to prepare yourself

Set them with dates and actually hold yourself accountable to attaining them. The number one reason mortgage professionals fail in the business is because they stop growing when the business is booming. The big mortgage shops grow and decline with the market but their trends are always up. This is due to riding market conditions while continuing to grow despite them.

Most loan officers limit themselves to selling few very specific loans, when in fact they can sell everything … it’s time to diversify. There are plenty of loan products out there and the people that are closing the most loans every month are offering all the loan products. Find out what your competitors are doing to beat you every month and replicate. Then find out what they are missing and do that too! Business is often referred to as war for this reason.

Market yourself and your business
Call a marketing company to find out what is working. Marketing firms are the most under used and fantastic way to stay on top of market conditions. They always tell you what is working, and they have a good grasp on the state of the entire nation, not just your region. Spend some time and money getting your name out there. If you are not picking up five to 10 new leads per week, you are missing the boat. Many companies are supplying their loan originators with hundreds of leads per month. If you can close these leads at a rate of 10 to 15 percent, you are in for a really good month.

TagQuest Inc. is a full-service marketing firm specializing in marketing for the mortgage industry. For more information, call (888) 717-8980 or visit TagQuest.com.

This article originally appeared in the October 2016 print edition of National Mortgage Professional Magazine.

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