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5 Most Popular Mortgage Refinance Loans in 2012


The U.S. economy has been fighting to escape the recession and the housing crisis has emerged as the National focus. Meanwhile the Obama Administration, the Federal Reserve and the entire mortgage industry have joined forces with record low refinance rates and aggressive home loan programs. Can these creative financial minds put an end to the unstable housing sector? Only time will tell, but we are giving these entities an “A” for effort.

This will be Remembered as the Era for Record Low Rate Mortgage Refinancing

The Mortgage Bankers Association announced earlier this month that 2012 has seen the lowest rates for mortgage refinancing since they have been keeping records.

The time for securing the best rate from a refinance loan has never been more right than today. Qualifying for these record low interest rates has been a challenge for many who have seen their incomes and credit scores fall in recent years.

The following refinance loans below have emerged as the leading refinance solutions in America at a time when finances are more important  than ever. The stakes are high for refinancing because many homeowners have an opportunity to save thousands of dollars a year.

1. HARP Refinance – The guidelines for the Home Affordable Refinance have seen drastic changes in 2012. Just try and stop these underwater borrowers from refinancing. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac made the “loan to value” stipulations disappear for the first time ever.

2. FHA Streamline Refinance –The Federal Housing Administration nearly copied the refinance guidelines from Fannie and Freddie when the altered the home equity requirements to become a non-factor. No appraisal is needed now for existing FHA customers that seek to lower their interest rate through the streamline program. Another reason why the streamline has become so popular is that it is one of the few loans that do not require income documentation. Refinance lenders simply verify the borrower’s employment rather than examining their W2’s, pay-stubs and tax returns for income like most loans require.

3. Bad Credit Refinance –  The average credit score has plummeted in the last few years causing the demand for refinancing with bad credit to soar. Fortunately, Nationwide has become a subprime leader for refinancing. The VA continues to have no minimum credit score for borrowers seeking a refinance and FHA is only asking for a minimum credit score of 500.

4. Cash Out Refinance – With interest rates shattering record once again in 2012 it should come as no surprise that homeowners have been looking to get refinance and get cash out.  FHA allows cash back on 85% LTV refinancing and VA approved military borrowers to get cash back at 90% LTV. Conventional lenders have been requiring 80% LTV for borrowers that want money back and homeowners who are blessed with 20% home equity in their property continue to tap it because money is so cheap. Imagine how much money people are saving who are consolidating 20% credit card debt into a mortgage below 4 percent.

5. 30-Year Fixed Mortgage Refinance – With fixed 30-year rates available at 3.5% (APR 3.67%)  it makes sense that homeowners would migrate towards the most secure and affordable loan of all-time. With many refinance lenders easing the guidelines for the 30-year mortgage it has become a natural progression for new homeowners to refinance when the rates fall and the guidelines improve.

By now, most consumers understand that mortgage refinance loans cannot be this attractive forever. Expect to see interest rates jump when the housing crisis is visible in the rear-view mirror or if defaults begin to mount again. At the end of the day 2012 will be remembered for high unemployment and historic interest rate opportunities for mortgage refinance loans.

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