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How long will late mortgage payments keep me from refinancing?

Q: Recently married. New wife has mediocre credit; my score is 770. I wanted to refi her house. An attorney advised me to add my name to her title. When I tried to refi I was denied because she had two late payments, even though her credit is not involved. Was told it was due to Fannie/Freddie rules. Only talking $60K, house worth $80K. Anything I can do besides wait a year?

A: Unfortunately, Fannie and Freddie both require that there be no "mortgage lates" on the credit file during the past year before they will accept a new loan from a mortgage lender. You might talk to a few other lenders to see if any will write your loan for their own books (and so not need to adhere to the GSE's rules) but that is a bit of a longshot. You may end up waiting a year.

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