In his White House Speech last night before a joint session of Congress, President Obama revealed his intent to help American homeowners refinance their mortgages to take advantage of the historically low rates we are currently seeing.
While President Obama did not touch on specifics, White House officials have said the U.S. Treasury was having talks with both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and their regulator, the Federal Housing Finance Agency, on potential ways to open up refinancing as an option for more Americans.
From the President’s Speech:
“To help responsible home owners, we’re going to work with federal housing agencies to help more people refinance their mortgages at interest rates that are now near 4 percent,” Obama said during his speech. He then signaled that said that such a move would “put more than $2,000 a year in a family’s pocketbook and give a lift to an economy still burdened by the drop in housing prices.”
Concern Moving Forward, Can This Work?
While the President’s intent is surely appreciated by many, there is concern about the ability of such actions to actually come to fruition. A prime example of government intervention that failed to achieve its intended goals is HARP, the Home Affordable Refinance Program launched in 2009. It was designed to allow homeowners that would normally not qualify with little to no equity in their homes to take similarly take advantage of low interest rates, with the requirement that they had loans backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. The goal of the program was to help “four or five million” home owners, but in reality only 838,000 homeowners had been helped as of June.
Do You Need Government Intervention or Can you Lock In A Low Rate Now?
If you are looking for the answer to this question, we can help. You may not need to wait and may be eligible now to lock in historically low mortgage rates now. If in doubt, please contact us for a free consultation where we can help you understand your options.