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Get HARP 2.0 Help for Your Super Underwater Mortgage

Yesterday, I wrote how I am super underwater on my rental property. I also wrote how I am forced to keep it as a rental unless I want to take a huge loss by selling my property for over $35,000 less than I owe, even though I have no intentions of  living in the property again. I’m fortunate that I have reliable tenants and an income to pay the mortgage even if my tenants decides to stop paying me. However, there are millions of Americans who struggle with the same issue of being underwater on their home-turned-forced-rental-property everyday.

HARP for Underwater Mortgages

For struggling homeowners AND myself, there is the Obama Administration’s Making Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP). Specifically, new guidelines have been set forth to help millions of homeowners either, lower their existing mortgage payments or change the term of their mortgage (i.e. change from a 15 year fix to a 30 year fix rate mortgage). I highly recommend that you check out the HARP site, if you haven’t already. YOU CAN EASILY SAVE $100s!

For example, under the existing guidelines, even though my property is $37,000 underwater and has a current interest rate of 6.5%, and would have a loan to value of roughly 131%, I am eligible to refinance at today’s existing rates of sub-4%. Because I have never missed a mortgage payment, and meet other guideline criteria, I am eligible to refinance with my existing lender for my rental property, which is unheard of in the real estate investment world. Normally, an investment property is required to have 25% equity in a home before a refinance is even considered.


HARP  is set up to help everyone, not just distressed homeowners-to-forced-landlords. The guidelines are set up to help people who:

  • Are unemployed
  • Have a Second Mortgage
  • Had Their Home’s Value Fall
  • Want to Lower Their Existing Interest Rate, or
  • Want to Lower Their Monthly Payments

Of course, each program under HARP has its own eligibility criteria, AND one is still at the mercy of their lending institution, but the program is worth checking out.

Visit: Making Home Affordable.gov

I’m currently in the process of refinancing my rental property with HARP. So far it’s going well.

  • Have you attempted to refinance under the newest HARP guidelines? How are things going for you? Do you have an experience to share?


  1. I’m glad that some of the people (e.g., you) that were innocent bystanders, yet ensnared by the real estate collapse, are getting some relief/incentives. You’ve paid your bills on time, are current, and it is in everyone’s best interest that you continue to do so. The banks have enough foreclosures and “strategic defaults” on there hands already. We need to clean up the excess housing inventory and continue to restore credibility to the real estate market. Thanks for doing your part.

    • You’re welcome. Unfortunately, there are too many people who choose not to do their part. This only puts more fuel in the fire. If people who could afford their homes continued to pay, I’d probably not be underwater by so much.

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