Last Thursday evening, President Obama delivered a speech before Congress to encourage American homeowners. “To help responsible homeowners we’re going to work with Federal housing agencies to help more people refinance their mortgages at interest rates that are now near 4% – a step that can put more than $2,000 a year in a family’s pocket, and give a lift to an economy still burdened by the drop in housing prices.”
Whether this means a new program or a revision of the existing Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) remains unclear. Small tweaks to enhance HARP’s effectiveness could be made fairly easily, but bigger revisions or a new plan altogether would require Congress to pass such legislation.
While the government has attempted to lend a helping hand to underwater homeowners by offering a variety of refinance, remodification, or principal reduction programs, some have fallen short of expectations. With others, it’s too soon to tell.
- Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP)
- Second Lien Modification Program
- Hardest Hit States Fund
- Home Affordable Foreclosures Alternatives (HAFA)
- Principle Reduction Alternative (PRA)
- Home Affordable Unemployment Program (HAUP)
- FHA Short Refinance
- Emergency Homeowner’s Loan Program (EHLP)
- Extended Forbearance for FHA Loans
Check out CNNMoney’s complete scorecard on the above.