Mortgage financier Fannie Mae said today refinance volume increased nearly three fold to $41 billion in February from one month earlier.
It was the biggest month in terms of mortgage refinancing in nearly a year, sparked by record low interest rates.
“Borrowers are increasingly taking advantage of the low mortgage rates available in the market today,” said Tom Lund, Executive Vice President, Single-Family Mortgage Business for Fannie Mae, in a release.
“We anticipate that volumes will increase even more as millions of additional homeowners become eligible to refinance under the President’s Making Home Affordable plan.”
The so-called Home Affordable Refinance will allow more borrowers to take advantage of the low rates, by allowing refinances up to 105 percent loan-to-value, well beyond the typical 80-percent ceiling.
So far, 100,000 borrowers have accessed Fannie Mae’s online mailbox to inquire about eligibility for the program, and another 50,000 have contacted the company’s national hotline since the plan was announced.
“Providing broader access to affordable, sustainable mortgages through expanded refinancing opportunities is a critical part of preventing future foreclosures and hastening recovery.”
The Home Affordable Refinance program, which is expected to help as many as four to five million homeowners, ends in June 2010.