MHA Programs[cite::98::cite]

Scroll through for more information on the MHA programs including Home-Affordable, Refinance, Unemployment, and Modification Programs, as well as Home-Affordable Modification Program alternatives.

Home Affordable Modification Program

Help for Homeowners Having Trouble

The Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) assists homeowners having trouble making their monthly payment. HAMP lowers the borrower’s monthly mortgage payment to 31% of his/her gross monthly income. Before a mortgage is permanently modified, the borrower must complete a trial period of three to four months to demonstrate that he/she will be able to make the reduced payments on time.

HAMP Consideration

To be considered for HAMP, you must:

  • Occupy the home as your primary residence
  • Have a mortgage balance less than $729,750 for a one-unit property
  • Have monthly payments on the first mortgage greater than 31
  • Be able to demonstrate financial hardship

HAMP is available for mortgage loans that are owned or guaranteed by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac or owned by one of the participating nongovernment-sponsored enterprises listed on the Making Home Affordable (MHA) web site.

Contact your mortgage servicer to see if you qualify for HAMP.

Second Lien Modification Program (2MP)

The Second Lien Modification Program (2MP) works with Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) to further help struggling homeowners. To take advantage of 2MP, your first lien must be modified through HAMP before the second lien can be considered for 2MP. If your second mortgage servicer is a participant, it may reduce your interest rate, extend the term, forbear (delay your monthly payments for a period) of the lien or, at its discretion, forgive a portion or the entirety of the second lien.

If you qualify for a 2MP and make timely payments, you may be eligible to receive a principal reduction of up to $1,250 ($250 per year for five years). Contact your second mortgage servicer to see if you are eligible and the servicer is participating. If you don’t quality for HAMP, there may be alternative programs.

Quick Tip: Incentive to Pay on Time

A $1,000 incentive can be accrued each year, up to a $5,000 principal reduction for timely monthly payments
on a permanent modification.

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Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP)

Help When Your Loan is Owned by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac

Home Affordable Refinance Programs (HARP) helps homeowners with home loans that are owned by Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae. The HARP loan requires a loan application, approval and closing process.

HARP Qualification

Certain restrictions apply, but you may be eligible for HARP if:

  • You’re current on your Freddie Mac or Fannie Mae loan
  • You haven’t been more than 30 days late in the last 12 months
  • The refinance will improve the long-term affordability of your mortgage
  • You have the ability to make the new payments
  • Your mortgage isn’t insured by FHA, VA or the USDA and is not a nonconforming loan

HARP may allow for higher loan to value limits. Other restrictions apply. Contact your servicer to see if you qualify.

Quick Tip: Ineligible Loans

While mortgages insured by FHA, VA, USDA and nonconforming loans aren’t eligible for Home Affordable Refinance programs, other programs may be available.

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Home Affordable Unemployment Program

Help for Unemployed Homeowners

Home Affordable Unemployment Program (UP) may offer unemployed homeowners temporary assistance of no less than three months forbearance, which either suspends or reduces your monthly mortgage payment. Extensions are based on the servicer’s discretion.

UP Qualification

You may qualify for UP if:

  • You’re currently delinquent on your loan or defaulting is foreseeable
  • You’re unemployed and are eligible for unemployment benefits
  • Your loan hasn’t been previously modified under HAMP
  • You haven’t previously received UP forbearance.

Quick Tip: Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae

Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae may have their own forbearance arrangements with unemployed borrowers.
Contact your servicer to find out.

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HAMP Alternatives

Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives (HAFA)

If you aren’t able to qualify for Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP), and are considering relinquishing your home, you may be eligible for Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternative (HAFA). HAFA options include a short sale or a deed-in-lieu. Upon eligibility, HAFA encourages cooperation from subordinate lien holders, which may release you from future liability for the debt and provides $3,000 in relocation assistance.

Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae Modifications

If you aren’t eligible for HAMP, you may be eligible for a Freddie Mac Standard Modification or a Fannie Mae Alternative Modification. These programs were designed by Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae to include homeowners that may not qualify for HAMP. Requirements for these programs vary.

Quick Tip: What to Expect


Investment properties and second homes may be eligible properties for the Freddie Mac Standard Modification and Fannie Mae Alternative Modification programs. Call your servicer to see if you qualify.

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