June 27, 2017

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Articles in Category: Closing Costs

Low Down Payment FHA Loans

Low Down Payment FHA Loans

What is the key to low down payment FHA loans? The answer might surprise you, especially if you’re a first time home buyer. Getting a mortgage loan means (in most cases) that the borrower must budget and save for a down payment, but the amount of that down payment can vary quite a bit depending on the lender. For conventional loans you may find down payment requirements between five and 20 percent. But with FHA home loans, that amount can be as low as 3.5% of the adjusted value of the property. For FHA loan applicants who have FICO scores that may be considered “marginal”, that down payment requirement may be adjusted to 10%. Why the higher down payment? FICO scores. Believe it or not, your credit rating can be | more...

 

Closing Costs And Earnest Money For FHA Loans

In a recent post we discussed FHA loan down payments and how the lender is required to verify that down payment money is coming from acceptable sources. Did you know the lender is also required to verify the sources of earnest money and funds to pay closing costs? It’s true-FHA home loan rules include requirements that these funds comply with FHA loan rules. For example, if your earnest money comes to you in the form of a gift, those gift funds must meet the rules and requirements of the FHA Loan Handbook HUD 4000.1 section titled Gifts (Personal and Equity): “Gifts refer to the contributions of cash or equity with no expectation of repayment.” This means your earnest money gift must never carry any strings attached. But that isn’t all-the | more...

 
mortgage loan and business debt

FHA Loan Fees: A Reader Question

A reader asked us a question in the comments section recently about FHA loan fees. “What is the total that lender can charge on an FHA loan?” Unfortunately there is no single answer to this question. FHA loans, and all mortgage loans, have costs that will vary depending on the lender, the transaction, whether or not sellers agree to pay some of the closing costs or other expenses. etc. Even the FHA loan funding fee, which is a standard part of all this, is based on a percentage of the mortgage amount. That amount naturally varies depending on the transaction. FHA loan rules in HUD 4000.1 instruct the lender: “The Mortgagee or sponsored TPO may charge a reasonable origination fee. The Mortgagee or sponsored TPO may charge and collect from | more...

 

Cash To Close And Earnest Money: FHA Loan Rules

All home loans have requirements for cash to close the deal, earnest money, and down payments. The FHA loan rules for these are found in HUD 4000.1, which has instructions to the lender on how to verify and process these payments. For example, on page 296 of HUD 4000.1, we learn the following: “The Mortgagee may only consider assets derived from acceptable sources in accordance with the requirements outlined below. Closing costs, prepaid items and other fees may not be applied towards the Borrowers Minimum Required Investment” also known as the down payment. Sources of cash to close and earnest money must be properly documented by the lender. FHA loan rules do not permit non-collateralized loans such as credit card cash advances or payday loans to be used for the | more...

 

Down Payment Assistance and FHA Loans

A reader got in touch this week about a question related to down payment assistance for FHA mortgages. “I’m buying a home for 175,000. I’ve been cleared to close. Ive been approved for $30,000 down payment assistance which has covered all my down/closing fees.” “A day before closing the FHA is saying I still need to pay 3.5% of the purchase. Is it still required? I thought with FHA at least $1000 earnest money was enough. I had $30,000 already approved.” Answering this question is difficult for two reasons-we don’t know the specifics of the gift funds, and whether those funds were actually considered down payment assistance or contributions toward closing costs. There is a big difference between down payment assistance funds, and funds contributed to closing costs. FHA loan | more...

 

FHA Loan Rules For Gift Funds

FHA loan rules in HUD 4000.1 have specific guidelines where gift funds to the borrower are concerned. Gift funds are commonly used for home loan expenses including down payments, but when the borrower accepts gift funds for the purpose of making that down payment, the funds must meet FHA acceptability standards. What does this mean? FHA loan rules are very precise when it comes to the source of money used for a down payment. A borrower cannot use proceeds from a non-collateralized loan such as a payday loan or credit card cash advance to make a down payment, and if gift funds are used the money must come to the borrower with no obligations. HUD 4000.1 has the guidelines for these gifts, which includes the following definition: “Gifts refer to | more...

 
FHA home loans

Cash Back To The Borrower and FHA Loans

Do FHA loans permit cash back to the borrower? We get many reader questions in our comments section about this subject. Some want to know if they can borrow more than the cost of the home and use the excess funds for personal use. Others want to know if cash-back refinance options are available on FHA mortgages. The rules that govern cash back to the borrower can be found in HUD 4000.1. As a general rule, FHA loans for “forward mortgages”, which means typical house purchases, do not allow cash back to the borrower. There’s an exception for money that was paid up front for something that was later permitted to be included into the loan amount. That would be considered a refund and is not forbidden by FHA loan | more...

 

Down Payment: FHA Loan Rules

How much do you know about FHA loan down payment requirements? If you’re feeling in the dark about this as a new house hunter, don’t feel bad-we take plenty of reader questions in the comments section about FHA home loans, but from time to time we get them not just from home buyers or sellers, but also from loan officers and others in the industry. There was a reader question this week from an “industry person” about down payments and the FHA loan rules associated with them. We like to point out in times like these that we are not affiliated with the FHA, HUD, or any other government entity, but we do where and know how to find the answers to questions like the following: “What about two brothersone | more...

 

FHA Loan Assumption Processing Fees

One of the benefits of FHA home loans is the ability to let another person assume the loan, with the participation of the lender. Most FHA loans today may be assumed by another person as long as the lender is involved in the process. Loan assumptions do have closing costs, including a processing fee. The FHA official site has announced changes in the processing fee structure for FHA loan assumptions. According to FHA Mortgagee Letter 2016-24, the agency’s maximum fee of $500 for processing an assumption where a credit check is required hasn’t been modified, “since it was established in the now superseded Handbook 4330.1 REV-5, Section 4-4A.2, dated September 29, 1994. As mortgagee expenses have risen since the maximum processing fee was established, it is appropriate to establish a | more...

 

FHA Loans Closing Checklist

Borrowers who buy a home with an FHA loans or any other type of home loan, learn that their closing dates and other details become very important the closer the borrower comes to signing on the dotted line and taking possession of the home. To help borrowers manage all the details about closing, federal law requires the loan officer to provide a closing disclosure that details expenses, fees, and other information. The government’s watchdog agency, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) at ConsumerFinance.gov says of this disclosure, “Lenders are required to provide your Closing Disclosure three business days before your scheduled closing. Use these days wisely”. The three day period before you close should be used to review your closing details-use it like a closing checklist to make sure everything | more...