The group of borrowers represents a collective $1.2 trillion in home loans, and billions in lost savings, whether by choice or necessity.
Apparently more than half could lower their rate by nearly three-quarters of a percentage point, and many could shave off a full point, assuming they qualified.
Well, we found out last week that a staggering 11.3 million, or 24 percent, of all residential properties with a mortgage in the United States are underwater, meaning more is owed on the mortgage(s) than the property is worth.
That’s enough to dampen refinance numbers, though there are options for borrowers looking to refinance with negative equity.
Mortgage bankers have also argued that costs and fees associated with refinancing have risen to the point where it’s unattractive for many homeowners.
All in all, it appears that those who need it least are receiving much of the benefits of the low rates, as refinances only seem to be going to the most creditworthy borrowers.
But hey, there’s always the purchase money mortgage market…