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Mortgage Insurers Expand Refi Programs

Mortgage Insurers Expand Refi ProgramsPMI, Radian announce updates

June 25, 2009

By staff

Two mortgage insurers have expanded their guidelines on refinance transactions.

The refinance-to-modification program at PMI Mortgage Insurance Co. has been expanded from just Home Affordable Refinance Program loans owned or guaranteed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac to all loans, a news release today said.

The program enables borrowers with existing mortgage insurance policies to refinance by modifying the existing policy, according to the Walnut Creek, Calif.-based company. The rate and premium are unchanged by the transaction, while no modification fees will be charged.

Borrowers who otherwise wouldn’t qualify for mortgage insurance because of plummeting home values are eligible for refinances under PMI’s program. Qualified loans must be current and reduce either the payment amount, interest rate or principal balance. Other qualifying factors include an extension of the teaser rate period, an extension of the amortization or a refinance out of an exotic loan.

In a June 15, announcement, PMI said it expanded home affordable refinance-to-modification programs from just loans where the existing servicer was handling the refinance to transactions where a new lender was funding the refinance.

In its own announcement today, Radian Guaranty Inc. said it launched a program that helps qualify borrowers for traditional refinances on loans not currently serviced by a new lender. The move was made in conjunction with the Homeowner Affordability and Stability Plan launched earlier this. The program enables borrowers with ineligible loan-to-values to refinance.

“The new program enables Radian to transfer a homeowner’s existing mortgage insurance policy to any new loan that meets the policy’s more flexible eligibility criteria, making it easier for homeowners to refinance their existing mortgage into a more predictable loan type and/or take advantage of today’s lower interest rates to lower their monthly payment,” Radian said.

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