June 24, 2017

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Articles Published in: March 2016

FHA Loan Questions: Mixed Use Property

We answer many questions about FHA home loans in the comments section. Here’s one of the most recent, on the subject of mixed-use properties, co-borrowing, and more: “My sister and I want to buy a house that is 1/2 apartment, 1/2 store. I already own a home and have an 820 credit score. She has a 620 score, and would be the owner occupant. I am married. Does my husbands income affect the debt to income ratio? If not, am I only calculated as responsible for 1/2 of our mortgage payment each month?” There are several issues that can affect the answers to these questions. To begin with, let’s examine what FHA loan rules in HUD 4000.1 say about transactions with non-occupying co-borrowers: “A Non-Occupying Borrower Transaction refers to a | more...

 
Mortgage Loan Rate Trends

Mortgage Rate Trends: Recovering Lost Ground

Mortgage rates have reclaimed some lost ground in the wake of a speech this week by Fed chair Janet Yellin. The Fed is still committed to “carefully” raising interest rates–a gradual increase as the U.S. economy continues to improve. The markets that affect mortgage rates has responded to this (among other factors) and we’re seeing mortgage rates starting to move lower accordingly. 30-year fixed rate mortgages were reported moving into a best execution range between 3.625% and 3.75%. FHA mortgage rates haven’t moved out from the comfort zone we’ve been discussing for some time so in spite of the conventional move we still see FHA mortgage rates at a best execution range between 3.25% and 3.5%. FHA rates vary more among lenders than their conventional equivalents so your experience may | more...

 

FHA Loan Rules For Income and Debt Calculation: Collections

FHA loan rules cover a lot of ground when it comes to a borrower’s creditworthiness. There are minimum FICO score requirements, instructions to the lender for reviewing the borrower’s record on-time payments (12 months of reliable payments on all financial obligations is strongly recommended), and much more. One area that is also covered in HUD 4000.1 is what the lender should do if collections are included in borrower’s credit history. The presence of a collection action on a loan applicant’s record may be cause for concern, but there are instructions to the lender on how to view collection accounts and what to do if those collections fall within the lender’s “tolerance” for loan approval. What will the lender require under FHA loan rules if the loan can move forward? HUD | more...

 

FHA Loan Rules For Debt Calculation: Installment Loans, Revolving Charge Accounts

It’s easy to forget that FICO scores are not the only credit issue lenders will examine when reviewing your FHA mortgage loan application. A lender isn’t just concerned with your scores; your ability to repay the loan and make your monthly mortgage payment requires a review of a potential borrower’s income and debt. The lender has different standards depending on the type of debt. For example, changes to FHA loan rules published last year require the lender to take student loan debt into account–even if the loan isn’t payable yet. Such debts are known as “deferred obligations” and if no monthly payment is available, the lender must take a percentage of the total debt to make the monthly payment estimation. FHA loan rules in HUD 4000.1 also include standards for | more...

 

FHA/FDIC Advice On Interest-Only Loans, Adjustable Rate Mortgages

We discuss a lot of aspects of the FHA home loan process, but sometimes it’s a very good idea to go right to the source–the FHA itself–to get the agency’s take on certain aspects of the FHA loan process. The FHA official site–www.FHA.gov–has some good advice for borrowers contemplating their loan options including interest-only loans and adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs). What does the agency say to potential borrowers about these kinds of loans? One of the first pieces of advice is along the basic lines of, “do your homework, and be sure to read the fine print”. The FHA official site actually directs readers to look at another official government website–the FDIC official site–for some sound advice on how to approach the mortgage loan process where ARMs and interest-only mortgages | more...

 

FHA Loan Questions: Student Loan Debt

We get many questions about FHA loans in the comments section. Recently we’ve fielded several queries about student loan debts and how they relate to FHA mortgage loan approval. Once reader asks, “What about student loans, that are ‘in school’, and not even due and payable? We tried to get the Income Based Repayment, from the servicer, and they told us the loans are not due payable yet, therefore they can not be calculated for the Income Based Repayment. That doesnt seem fair. The statement says they are not due for 5 years, and then an additional 6 months after I graduate.” FHA loan rules in HUD 4000.1 address student loans that have not yet come due as “deferred obligations” which page 180 of HUD 4000.1 describes as, “liabilities that | more...

 
Mortgage Loan Rate Trends

Mortgage Rate Trends: Higher Before Easter Weekend

Last week, mortgage rates were on an upward trend, moving higher in small increments three out of the four business days before the long weekend. On Wednesday there was a glimmer of recovery, but on Thursday rates were back on the move upward, eliminating the previous range of rates for conventional mortgages and consolidating into one fixed-rate best execution number. 30-year fixed rate conventional mortgages had been in a best execution range between as low as 3.625% (the previous Friday) and 3.875%. We closed out the week with rates moving into a best execution 3.75% depending on the lender. In some cases borrowers may notice changes in closing costs rather than actual rates, but suffice it to say that it’s been a bumpy road for these rates lately. FHA mortgage | more...

 

HUD Reaches Settlement In California Housing Discrimination Case

Housing discrimination affects people in all stages of the journey to find a home. It doesn’t matter whether you are a renter, a prospective borrower, or somewhere in between; the rules that make up the Fair Housing Act apply across the board for those looking for a place to live. The FHA/HUD official site recently published a press release announcing a settlement in a California housing discrimination case; sometimes the victims of housing discrimination are the only ones who can prevent further discrimination from happening. Those who report their experiences do a service to themselves and to future borrowers and renters by helping to end illegal practices such as the ones mentioned in HUDNo.16-035: “The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) announced today an agreement with a Cupertino, | more...

 

HUD Offers Grants to Clean Up Lead Paint Hazards in the Home

When you buy a home with an FHA mortgage, one of the appraisal requirements that must be met on certain older homes is that there must be an awareness of potential lead paint hazards in the property. A home that was built prior to 1978 may contain lead paint, and HUD 4000.1 page 115 states clearly: “If the Property was built before 1978, the seller must disclose any information known about lead-based paint and lead-based paint hazards before selling the house, in accordance with the HUD-EPA Lead Disclosure Rule (24 CFR 35, subpart A, and the identical 40 CFR 745, subpart F). For such Properties, the Mortgagee must ensure that: –the Borrower has been provided the EPA-approved information pamphlet on identifying and controlling lead-based paint hazards (Protect Your Family From | more...

 

FHA Loan Questions: Employment Gaps

We get many comments and questions about FHA home loan rules in our comments section. Here’s one of the most recent. “I have some money saved up, however I have not been employed for 2.5 years. I would like FHA loan if possible. My main issue is all my money is cash and not in the bank, and I have NO employment history for the past 2 years.” Basically it seems that the reader is asking whether an FHA loan is possible without a job. This is a complex issue-FHA loans permit the lender to consider public assistance, for example, as income. The source of income must be verifiable by the lender and deemed likely to continue. However, in the case of this reader question, there is no income at | more...