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Can I refinance my manufactured home?

By   |  Posted in Ask The Expert

Q: My manufactured rental property is underwater. Is there any hope for a modification or refinance?

A: It is not surprising that you are having trouble getting mortgage relief on your manufactured rental.

First, most refinance and modification efforts are available only for owner-occupied properties; yours is not. Also, modification programs are usually aimed at homeowners in some form of financial hardship; you don't mention that this is the case.

As well, the only "official" refinance program for most underwater borrowers is the Home Affordable Refinance Program, but that is only available if your loan is owned or backed by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac; presumably, your loan is not.

If your loan is an FHA-backed loan, you might be eligible for a streamline refinance, which appears to also apply to rental properties. Presumably, if the FHA backed the loan initially, they would generally re-back it.

However, lenders are skittish about putting "risky" loans into the FHA pool these days, so you'll probably need to shop around long and hard to find a mortgage lender who will help. Also, all indications are that even though the process is streamlined, you cannot finance the closing costs into the loan, so you'll need to pay them out-of-pocket.

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