April 30, 2012
One commonly asked question about FHA home loans involves the process of determining how much a borrower could pay on a monthly basis on the FHA guaranteed loan. For this purpose, the FHA official site refers potential borrowers to a loan calculator provided by GinnieMae.gov, which is designed to help borrowers get a general idea of what the costs might be per month based on user-provided details including the sale price of the home, the housing market that home is in, etc. Specifically, the loan calculator asks for the sale price of the property, the state and county where that property is, the term of the loan plus interest rate, and the amount of down payment. Once these fields are filled in, the GinnieMae.gov calculator returns the results with plenty | more...
April 27, 2012
The official White House You Tube channel posted a video on April 18th, 2012, detailing the President’s plan for refinancing for borrowers. According to the YouTube post, “Brian Deese, Deputy Director of the National Economic Council, explains how President Obama’s plan would make it much easier for millions of American homeowners to refinance their mortgage and save hundreds of dollars every month.” This plan has been proposed, but has not been passed by Congress. As described in the video (see below at the end of this blog post), there are many advantages to refinancing, and the Obama plan would, if passed, offer more options for borrowers who need lower monthly payments and lower interest rates. But in the meantime, many FHA borrowers need refinancing and can’t afford to wait to | more...
April 26, 2012
A reader asks, “If we have to wait till June 11, 2012 to refinance, can we lock in an interest rate now? Our loan was done Feb 2008, our insurance will be lowered but will the interest be at the now, low rate (below 4%)?” One important part of negotiating an FHA home loan with a specific lender is knowing how the FHA mortgage process works. According to the rules, the Federal Housing Administration does not set the interest rates on FHA mortgages; that’s up to the borrower and the lender to work out together. Borrowers are encouraged to shop competitively between lenders to find the best interest rate. From the FHA official site: “First, devise a checklist for the information from each lending institution. You should include the company’s | more...
April 25, 2012
The FHA and Department of Housing and Urban Development offer plenty of programs to help potential FHA borrowers learn about the process of finding a suitable property, understand the FHA loan application process, and much more. The FHA offers housing counseling referrals, links to FHA loan calculators, and provides a list of home buying programs offered in each state. But what about resources for those who haven’t gotten to the planning stages for an actual FHA home loan? What does the FHA offer to people who simply want to do research about FHA mortgage loans, buying a home, and becoming a home owner? There are a wide variety of resources available, but the FHA and HUD have offered some newer ones designed for people on the go, who want to | more...
April 24, 2012
When an FHA assigned appraiser submits his or her report and the fair market value of a given property is established, sometimes the buyer or seller may disagree with that determination of value. Can the FHA appraisal be appealed? There are some circumstances where a reconsideration of value may be warranted. According to the FHA, “A reconsideration of value is a request to the FHA Roster appraiser to reconsider the analysis and conclusions of his or her appraisal based on information that was not presented on the appraisal report, but was relevant to the appraisal and available to the appraiser in the normal course of business as of the effective date of the appraisal.” However, FHA rules also add that only “the lender
April 24, 2012
A reader asks, “If the buyer of a home built before 1978 is using an FHA mortgage to purchase, can I assume the appraisal is required to include a note if any chipping or peeling paint was observed both inside and outside of the home? Is there any written verbiage that states what the Appraisal shall include as required by Federal/HUD rules?” FHA loan rules governing appraisals do include rules governing chipping and peeling paint on properties built prior to 1978. According to FHA loan rules found on the FHA official site,
April 23, 2012
There’s a common theme among many of our most frequently asked questions about FHA guaranteed home loans; “Why do the FHA rules say one thing, while my lender says another?” In many cases this question has to do with FHA rules covering appraisals, minimum property requirements, or even the minimum waiting period required after foreclosure before the borrower can try applying for a new FHA home loan. For example, the FHA loan rules about streamline refinancing loans state that an appraisal may not be required under the right circumstances. From the FHA official site: ” Streamline refinances can be insured with or without an appraisal. When an appraisal is completed FHA does not require the repairs (except for lead based paint repairs) to be completed, however the lender may require | more...
April 20, 2012
The FHA and HUD have announced disaster assistance for victims of recent storms in Hawaii. According to a press release issued by the Department of Housing and Urban Development, the department will “speed federal disaster assistance to the State of Hawaii and provide support to homeowners and low-income renters forced from their homes following severe storms, flooding and landslides” during the month of March. The announcement comes after a presidential disaster declaration for Hawaii’s Kauai County. According to the press release, “The President
April 19, 2012
The official FHA/HUD blog, The HUDdle, published a recent collection of links to housing news that included a radio report from the Boise, Idaho Public Radio station KBSX about a scientific study on the advantages of adding energy efficient improvements to buildings. The study, conducted by
April 18, 2012
From time to time, we report news of housing scams that can affect FHA borrowers. It’s a way of raising the awareness that such scams exist, a reminder of the necessity of being careful in the loan process. The latest news from the FHA and HUD includes a report of three loan officers and a title agent who have been barred from doing business with the FHA/HUD following their convictions on fraud charges. The action was announced in a press release at HUD.gov, HUDNo.12-069: “The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) today announced the indefinite debarment of three South Florida mortgage loan officers and a Pittsburgh title agent following their criminal convictions on charges they defrauded elderly borrowers, mortgage lenders and the Federal Housing Administration (FHA). Marcos Echevarria, | more...