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Countrywide offers payment-flexibility mortgages. (Business Alert).

COUNTRYWIDE HOME LOANS INC., CALABASAS, California, has added a new loan option to its existing suite of payment flexibility--type mortgages. The newest loan, PaymentPower[TM] Mortgage, allows qualified homeowners to skip up to two monthly payments per year and up to 10 payments over the life of their loan.

PaymentPower allows qualified borrowers to voluntarily skip a maximum of two monthly payments (includes principle, interest, taxes and insurance) in a 12-month period, and skip up to 10 payments over the life of the loan. This option is currently available on conventional, fixed-rate, 30-year loans.

For this flexibility, borrowers can make a one-time payment upfront, or can pay a fee for each payment they skip (some options are not available in certain states). The fee will range from $100 to $230 per skipped payment, depending on the original loan amount.

Borrowers must make the first three monthly payments of their loan before taking advantage of the skipped-payment option. Borrowers must also keep their loans current to be eligible for skipped payments. The skipped payment will be capitalized and added to the customer's remaining loan balance. After each skipped month, a new monthly payment will be calculated based on the remaining mortgage term and the original interest rate. As a result, the new monthly payment will be slightly higher.

PaymentPower, trademarked by Fannie Mae, is currently limited to Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts and Washington, but coverage is expected to expand to most states. PaymentPower will be offered initially through Countrywide's retail division, and will be rolled out by the company's wholesale division.
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Publication:Mortgage Banking
Geographic Code:1U9CA
Date:Apr 1, 2003
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