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Articles Published in: February 2011

FHA Appraisals Vs. Home Inspections

There are two costs an FHA borrower pay when purchasing a home with an FHA insured mortgage. One is required, the other is optional, but FHA loan applicants should count on paying for both to insure the best possible experience with the new home. An FHA appraisal is the mandatory expense buyers must pay when trying to buy a house with an FHA mortgage. The FHA must determine the property meets FHA standards for safety, longevity, and other factors before it will insure the loan. Appraisals are designed to assign the fair market value of the home. While the appraisal is meant to insure the home is safe and livable, it is not considered an inspection and does not pretend to be a comprehensive look at all features of the | more...


Where Do I Go for an FHA Insured Home Loan?

First time home buyers often don't know where to start when it comes time to find that first home. Locating properties for sale isn't challenging--there are plenty of for sale signs in or near practically every neighborhood and even more to browse in the local papers and online real estate listings. But finding the home is only part of the challenge. Where does a buyer find a suitable lender? A buyer who wants an FHA home loan might not know where to start looking to find a lender. Conventional borrowers have it easier--any suitable bank with the right terms will do.


FHA Streamline Refinancing Rules

There have been several changes to the rules affecting FHA refinancing loans. Subordinate liens, the waiting period borrowers must go through before applying for an FHA refinancing loan, and other important areas have all been affected by new rules designed to protect the FHA loan program and tighten control in certain areas of the refinancing process. For example, borrowers are now required to be current on their mortgage the month prior to and for the month of the closing date.


Changes to FHA Refinancing Rules

In our last blog post we discussed some changes to FHA refinancing loan rules. Effective immediately, the FHA requires all borrowers seeking streamline refinancing to make at least six mortgage payments on the property. There must also be a minimum of


FHA Streamline Refinance Loan Changes

There have been many changes recently to FHA Refinancing regulations--too many to cover in a single blog post, but we'll discuss them over the next several days. One important set of changes is to the Streamline Refinance program--a "non credit-qualifying" refinancing loan offered by the FHA. When a borrower applies for an FHA insured mortgage, they may do so fully intending to refinance it later on using an FHA Streamline Refinancing mortgage.


FHA Loan Down Payments: Who Can Pay?

In our last blog post, we discussed FHA loan down payment amounts. The FHA has strict rules about not only the amount of the down payment, but also the source of that money. According to the FHA rulebook, down payments must be made by the buyer. The seller is allowed to offer concessions such as paying closing costs or other expenses related to selling the home, but the seller is prohibited from contributing a down payment.


How Much Is My FHA Loan Down Payment?

FHA home loans differ from conventional loans in many ways. One of those differences is the amount of down payment required to purchase a home with an FHA insured loan. FHA loans, like their conventional counterparts, do not have a fixed dollar amount required as a down payment. Instead, a percentage of the loan amount is calculated, based on the sale price of the property.


What Happens When You Apply for an FHA Loan?

There are many steps in the process of getting an FHA home loan. Borrowers who search for a home, make an offer and set a closing date have a variety of milestones along the way that don't surprise second-time borrowers, but newcomers to the process often have many questions. Those who seek pre-approval for home loans should know that a pre-approved loan amount or pre-qualification is not a guarantee that a borrower will get the loan they seek. Much depends on your actual circumstances when it comes time to apply for the loan itself.


Can I Use FHA Streamline Refinancing to Avoid Foreclosure?

There are many options FHA borrowers have to avoid default and foreclosure on an FHA mortgage. Borrowers in trouble are encouraged to contact the FHA and their lender as early as possible in the process of dealing with financial difficulty--the earlier you act, the more options you have. There are several homeowner bailout programs available to help homeowners keep their homes, avoid missing additional mortgage payments and stay on financial track. For borrowers who are struggling with rising mortgage payments or who have payments that are currently too high, refinancing is an option that can help easy the monthly money crunch.


How to Shop For an FHA Home Loan

Applying for an FHA loan is, in the minds of some borrowers, the beginning of the process. But when you fill out an application for an FHA insured mortgage, you should actually be ending one process and starting another. One of the most important aspects of getting an FHA loan is finding the right lender and the most favorable terms. But how should an FHA borrower do that? Some go into their FHA loan research thinking the only real data needed is a list of interest rates on offer and calculating the monthly payment amounts is enough.