Does a refi loan need private mortgage insurance?

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DEAR BOB: I refinanced my condo last week. At the closing, I was informed by the lender that FHA requires PMI (private mortgage insurance) although I have 29 percent equity. Is there anything I can do to save the PMI monthly cost? The lender told me I am required to have it. But that sounds fishy. What recourse do I have? – Pandora M. DEAR PANDORA: Please don't confuse FHA's required MIP (mortgage insurance premium) with PMI (private mortgage insurance), which conventional mortgage lenders usually require when the homeowner has less than 20 percent equity. Purchase Bob Bruss reports online. All FHA mortgages must have MIP at their inception, regardless of the loan-to-value ratio. However, your lender should have disclosed when the premium can be removed, usually after 10 to 15 years. Frankly, the easiest way to get rid of FHA mortgage insurance is to refinance with a non-FHA mortgage. DOG KENNEL PROVOKES RAGE DEAR BOB: A few weeks ago you had a question from a condo owner ...