Refi initiative dials back PMI requirement

Mortgage insurance not needed if not on original loan

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Private mortgage insurers are welcoming a ruling by the regulator of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac that it expects the companies to keep existing private mortgage insurance policies in place when refinancing loans under the Obama administration’s new foreclosure prevention initiative.

But the ruling also said borrowers who didn’t need private mortgage insurance when taking out their original loan will not be required to obtain insurance when refinancing — even if their loan-to-value ratio has climbed above 80 percent.