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Mortgage

FHFA: Are you eligible for HARP?

Chart shows massive amount of eligible borrowers left

In total, only 3.1 million mortgages have been refinanced through HARP, millions of mortgage less than the once-target number.

But the Federal Housing Finance Agency is quickly moving into overdrive to capture this additional market share. 

"We know that there are hundreds of thousands of borrowers who can still benefit from Home Affordable Refinance Program and are essentially leaving money on the table by not taking advantage of the program," said FHFA Director Mel Watt, the head of the regulator overseeing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac

"By engaging directly with local community leaders, faith-based organizations, local elected officials and lenders, our goal is to leverage these trusted sources to reach as many 'in-the-money' borrowers as we can," Watt continued.

Watt along with housing experts and community leaders will meet in a town hall-style meeting at the Woodson Regional Library in Chicago on July 8 to discuss the benefits of HARP and encourage the approximately 36,000 Chicago residents still eligible to participate in the program.  

This is the start of a nationwide public campaign that will visit targeted cities with the highest number of in-the-money borrowers who have yet to take advantage of a HARP refinance.

But HARP refinances are significantly dwindling, and in the first quarter of 2014, the number of mortgages refinanced through the program was 76,930. Meanwhile, in the state of Florida alone, there are 82,435 loans eligible for HARP. And between Michigan, Ohio and Illinois there are over 130,000 eligible loans, with 44,341, 46,920 and 43,144 potential refis in each states, respectively.

The FHFA released a new interactive map as well to show the number of estimated in-the-money borrowers eligible for the program across the country. It even dives down to specifics of every zip code, county and metropolitan statistical area in the country.

Borrowers are considered in-the-money if they have a remaining balance of either $50,000 or more on their mortgage, have a remaining term on their mortgage greater than 10 years and their mortgage interest rate is at least 1.5% higher than current market rates, in addition to basic HARP eligibility requirements. 

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