Current Mortgage Rates: Richmond, VA
3.000% (3.001% APR) 30yrs
2.500% (2.617% APR) 15yrs
as of 06/18/21
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Glossary of Mortgage Terms

Search for glossary terms (regular expression allowed)
Term Main definition
HARP Program
The Home Affordability Refinance Program (HARP) was started by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in 2010 to provide refinancing to borrowers with loan-to-value ratios too high to be eligible for their standard programs.
Hazard insurance
Insurance purchased by the borrower, and required by the lender, to protect the property against loss from fire and other hazards. Also known as "homeowner insurance", it is the second “I” in PlTl
HECM
Stands for Home Equity Conversion Mortgage, a reverse mortgage program authorized by Congress in 1988. On a HECM, FHA insures the lender against loss in the event the loan balance at termination exceeds the value of the property, and insures the borrower that any payments due from the lender will be made, even if the lender fails.
Historical scenario
The assumption that the index value to which the rate on an ARM is tied follows the same pattern as in some prior historical period. In meeting their disclosure obligations in connection with ARMs, some lenders show how the mortgage payment would have changed on a mortgage originated some time in the past. That is not very useful. Showing how a mortgage originated now would change if the index followed a historical pattern would be useful, but nobody does it.
Home equity
Same as HELOC.
Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM)
A reverse mortgage program administered by FHA.
Home equity line of credit (HELOC)
A mortgage set up as a line of credit against which a borrower can draw up to a maximum amount, as opposed to a loan for a fixed dollar amount. For example, using a standard mortgage you might borrow $150,000, which would be paid out in its entirety at closing. Using a HELOC instead, you receive the lender's promise to advance you up to $150,000, in an amount and at a time of your choosing. You can draw on the line by writing a check, using a special credit card, or in other ways.
Home equity loan
Same as second mortgage.
Home Keeper
A reverse mortgage program administered by Fannie Mae.
Home Owners Loan Corporation
A Federal Government agency established by Congress in 1933 to help families avoid having their homes foreclosed.
Home Valuation Code of Conduct (HVCC)
A rule issued by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, effective May 1, 2009, that the agencies thenceforth would only purchase mortgages that were supported by an "independent" appraisal. The rule had some very bad though unintended side effects.
Homebuyer protection plan
A plan purporting to protect FHA homebuyers against property defects.
Homeowner's equity
See Equity.
Homeowners insurance
Insurance purchased by the borrower, and required by the lender, to protect the property against loss from fire and other hazards. It is the second "I" in PIT1.
Housing bank
A government-owned or affiliated housing lender. With minor exceptions, government in the US has never loaned directly to consumers, but housing banks are widespread in many developing countries.

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