Refinancing home loan will require new lender's title insurance policy

Refinancing home loan will require new lender's title insurance policy

For those who closed with Federal Title in the recent past and who may be considering refinancing their mortgage, we'd like to let you know we can provide you substantial savings on your closing costs.

In addition to providing a reissue rate discount on your title insurance premium, Federal Title also offers repeat clients a $200 credit applied toward settlement fees. When you order settlement services through our website, you can save an additional $100.

We'd like to remind you that it's your legal right to choose your own settlement service provider. Often times borrowers are not aware or informed of this right and end up spending more on closing costs than they should.

Get a free and anonymous Quick Quote from us and see how it stacks up to your mortgage lender's title company.

As you may know, we are the leading independent title company serving the DC metro area, and our settlements are conducted by licensed attorneys – not inexperienced notaries. Our online reviews tell our story.

New law will eliminate subordination agreement requirements for some Maryland residential refinances

A homeowner who wants to refinance his or her first mortgage when there are two mortgages on the property is typically required to obtain a subordination agreement for the existing second mortgage.

This is because without such an agreement, when the existing first mortgage is paid off, the existing second mortgage would move up to "first lien" position, which would mean that the refinance first mortgage would end up in "second lien" position, which would not be okay with the refinance lender.

A subordination agreement is an agreement from the existing second mortgage-holder that they will be in second place, behind the refinance first mortgage. 

There is a new law in Maryland that will go into effect on October 1, 2013 that will eliminate the need to obtain a subordination agreement for a second mortgage for certain residential refinances. If the requirements of the law are satisfied, upon recordation, a refinance first mortgage will automatically have the same priority as the existing first mortgage that it replaces.

The requirements are:

  1. The interest rate for the refinance first mortgage must be lower than the interest rate for the existing first mortgage;
  2. The principal amount secured by the refinance first mortgage must be no more than the unpaid outstanding principal balance of the existing first mortgage plus an amount to pay closing costs of up to $5,000;
  3. The principal amount secured by the existing second mortgage must be no more than $150,000; and
  4. The refinance first mortgage must contain in bold or capital letters specific language that is set forth in the law.

Virginia already has a similar law.

Big change for Maryland refinances involving non-principal residences

Until recently, Maryland treated refinances of principal residences and other properties differently.

A borrower refinancing a principal residence paid recordation taxes on the difference between the outstanding principal balance of the existing loan and the face amount of the new loan. However, for non-primary residences (and for commercial property) a borrower paid recordation taxes on the full amount of the new loan.

A new law removes that distinction. All refinances are treated the same, with recordation tax assessed only on the difference between the outstanding principal balance of the existing loan and the face amount of the new loan. The law is effective for all mortgages recorded on or after July 1, 2013.

Attention buyers and refinancers: Don't acquire new debt!

If you apply for a loan to buy or refinance a property, your lender will tell you not to acquire new debt before closing. What does this mean? It means, don’t buy a car with a car loan. Don’t get a new credit card. Don’t increase your credit line on existing credit cards. Don’t buy furniture for your new home on store credit.

This recent article in the Washington Post has a good discussion about why this is important and what the ramifications are if you ignore the warning from the lender.

HARP extended 2 more years

The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced earlier this month that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac would extend the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP) through December 31, 2015 .

The HARP Program was originally set to expire December 31, 2013.

The extension will allow more borrowers who have little or no equity in their homes take advantage of refinancing at today’s lower interest rates.

Eligibility for a HARP refinance is based upon the following criteria

  1. The borrower’s current loan must be owned or guaranteed by Fannie Mae* or Freddie Mac**
  2. The current mortgage must have been sold to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac on or before May 31, 2009
  3. The current mortgage must not have been refinanced under HARP previously unless it is Fannie Mae loan that was refinanced under HARP from March-May 2009
  4. The current mortgage’s loan-to-value (LTV) ratio must be greater than 80%
  5. The borrower must be current on their mortgage payments, have no late payments in the prior 6 months, and must not have more than 1 late payment in the prior 12 months
In addition to announcing the extension of the HARP program, the FHFA further announced the launch of a nationwide campaign designed to inform borrowers about the HARP program and its eligibility requirements in the hope that it motivates more borrowers to refinance using the program.

The HARP Program has already assisted approximately 2.2 million borrowers refinance since April 2009.
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Our blog contains general information only, not intended to be relied upon as, nor a substitute for, specific professional advice. Rate tables and figures that appear on our blog are deemed reliable but not guaranteed. For current rates & policies, refer to our Quick Quote and Consumer Guide. We accept no responsibility for loss occasioned to any purpose acting on or refraining from action as a result of any material on our blog.