Atlanta HARP 2.0 Refinance Options

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HARP 2.0 Refinance – Success Story

I love helping people save money and I love taking customers from Bank of America too! Here’s a review from a recently closed HARP 2.0 refinance customer.

Thank you Leslie for the kind words, you and Joey were a pleasure to work with!

Have you heard of the HARP program?  I hadn’t until late 2011.

What Is HARP?

If you’re underwater on your conforming, conventional mortgage, you may be eligible to refinance without paying down principal and without having to pay mortgage insurance.

In order to be eligible for the HARP refinance program :

  1. Your loan must be backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.
  2. Your current mortgage must have a securitization date prior to June 1, 2009.

Our mortgage met both requirements. Hip-hip-hooray!  Until I started worked on the process…I contacted the mega financial institution that services our loan— Bank of America —which has a whole department set up to answer questions about the program.  Or, rather, to tell homeowners that they don’t qualify for the program.  According to the friendly representative with whom I spoke, B of A does not allow HARP refinancing on loans that have lender paid mortgage insurance.  Guess who’s loan has LPMI?  ‘Strange…’I thought.  Why would a big business get to set their own regulations on a federal program?  And then I checked the handy HARP FAQs website:

My current mortgage has Lender-Paid Mortgage Insurance (LPMI).  Can I refinance via HARP?

Yes, you can refinance your mortgage via HARP 2.0 if your current loan has lender-paid mortgage insurance (LPMI).  It’s your loan officer’s responsibility to make sure that your new mortgage carries, at minimum, the same amount of coverage.

‘Interesting….’ I thought.  At that point, by some miracle, I came across Jonathan Blackwell, who is a mortgage consultant and loan specialist in Atlanta.  I sent him a message about my conflict with B of A and noted that my LMPI is with Radian (one of the major LPMI providers.)  He immediately responded with the following magic words:  Best answer you could have given.  I should be able to help.

He sent a link to an online application, which Joey and I sat down and completed one evening.  To go over the results, he e-mailed a video of himself explaining the paperwork, line by line.  Genius.  Joey and I were able to watch at our leisure, and when one of us inevitably asked the other “What did he say about that part?!,” we just pressed play again!  Genius.

As razzle-dazzled as we were by his technological innovation, we were even more spellbound by the interest rate that he was offering—4.625%….Our current interest rate is 6.5%!  For us, that’s over $400 in monthly savings!  Hip-hip-hooray!!!!!

There’s been plenty of other paper work exchanges, and I won’t bore you with all the details, but the process has been completely painless.  Jonathan and his associate, Tika, kept us updated as we waited through each phase and both are readily available by e-mail or phone.  In fact, Jonathan and I exchanged a few messages as I was waiting for the midnight screening of The Hunger Games to begin and he was up late, working!

I’ve been referring all my homeowner friends to Jonathan, using the adjective “awesome” frequently.  I tell each of them that I make no promises, other than that you will be working with a complete professional and an all around nice guy.  I wonder sometimes if he knows the potential for huge and meaningful impact that he has on people’s lives.  Over a year, Joey and I will save almost $5,000.  Over the life of our loan, we will save almost $85,000.  Huge and meaningful.

Thanks, Jonathan!  (And Tika!)


  1. Tracie
    TracieMay 14,12

    We are in NC, have a BofA loan, and have been told by Quicken and BofA that refi is impossible due to LPMI. LPMI that we were not aware of until trying to refi under HARP 2.0. It was never disclosed to us, and now I'm a bit steamed because no one seems to be able to give us a much-needed refi! Interest rate at 6.875. We need help, but I don't know where to turn!

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