September 21, 2019

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Articles Published in: February 2016

Prequalifying For An FHA Home Loan Online

Are you ready to prequalify for an FHA home loan? If you’ve never tried to do so online you’re probably wondering what information you’ll need to provide to get started. There are a number of steps to take, but before you begin it is very important to point out that prequalifying for a mortgage loan is not the same as loan approval. You will need to take additional steps with your loan officer before that can happen, but prequalifying helps borrowers determine what is possible with an FHA mortgage, what the loan amount and payments could be, etc. We’ll use the pre-qualification interface at FHA.com as our reference–it’s located in the center of the page under the heading “Qualify For An FHA Loan”. The first thing you’ll need to do | more...

 
Mortgage Loan Rate Trends

Mortgage Loan Interest Rate Trends: Moving Higher

This week mortgage loan interest rates have been pushing higher but we still see rates at incredible lows. 30-year fixed rate conventional mortgages had fallen to 3.5%, and this week at the time of this writing they had nudged back up to 3.625% best execution. Depending on the lender you may find that best execution rate in a range between 3.625% and 3.75%. FHA best execution rates are currently in a range between 3.25% and 3.5%, depending on the lender. Naturally your experience may vary and best execution rates seen here are not available to all borrowers or from all lenders. Your FICO scores, loan repayment history and other financial qualifications always play a big role in your access to the rates seen here. Industry professionals say the current lows | more...

 
How FHA Loan Modification Works

FHA Loans and Credit Issues

We get many questions in the comments section about credit requirements for FHA mortgage loans and refinance loans. Borrowers want to know if their credit scores are good enough, whether late or missed payments could be a factor in loan approval, or whether or not a certain type of income is acceptable for an FHA mortgage loan. In general terms, some credit issues depend on the lender. For example, FHA loan standards permit FICO scores below 600, but lenders tend to approve loans for borrowers with FICO scores in the mid-600s. The higher standards are lender requirements and this is allowed under FHA loan rules as long as the lender applies the higher standards in accordance with federal law. Lenders may require higher down payments from borrowers who don’t meet | more...

 

FHA Loan Questions: Can Social Security Income Be Used To Qualify For A Mortgage?

We’ve gotten several questions recently in the comments section about FHA home loans and using Social Security income to qualify. Many of the questions basically ask the same thing–does the FHA permit Social Security income to be used? Can a borrower qualify for an FHA mortgage when Social Security is a major portion of the income? The answer to the question “Do I qualify?” depends on the borrower’s other financial qualifications and an additional factor we’ll explore in a moment. The general answer is that the FHA does NOT view Social Security income as a liability for loan approval, but that income must meet certain standards and requirements. HUD 4000.1 instructs the lender on how to consider Social Security income, which falls under a heading the FHA terms “Disability Benefits”. | more...

 

Electronic Signatures on FHA Loan Documents: FHA Loan Rules In HUD 4000.1

In our last blog post we reviewed the rules in HUD 4000.1 on borrower signatures on FHA mortgage documents. Ever since the publication of HUD 4000.1 late last year we have been examining key passages in the new rule book as there have been many changes, updates, and restatements of FHA mortgage loan policy borrowers and industry professionals alike should be aware of. FHA loan rules for single-family mortgages permit the use of electronic signatures on certain FHA mortgage loan documents provided the signature and procedures used in collecting those signatures meets FHA standards. HUD 4000.1 addresses these requirements, starting with a basic definition of “electronic signature” to avoid confusion: “An Electronic Signature refers to any electronic sound, symbol, or process attached to or logically associated with a contract or | more...

 

FHA Loan Rules In HUD 4000.1: Signatures On Loan Documents

FHA loan rules in HUD 4000.1 spell out a variety of procedures and requirements for the handling of new purchase mortgage loans and refinance loans. One portion of this new (published in late 2015) FHA single family home loan rulebook governs the requirement for borrower signatures on key documents in the FHA loan process. Borrowers must not be asked to sign blank pages or incomplete documents–that’s one of the most basic requirements of the FHA loan procedure. But what are the other rules? Can a borrower use a power-of-attorney for portions of the loan process? What other documents require the borrower’s signature? A section of HUD 4000.1 titled, “Signature Requirements For All Application Forms” states: “All Borrowers must sign and date the initial and final Fannie Mae Form 1003/Freddie Mac | more...

 

FHA Loan Rules For Manufactured Housing

Recently we wrote about HUD’s proposed rule changes for manufactured housing standards to exclude certain recreational vehicles from the same requirements as home manufactured as permanent living spaces. In light of that recent news, it’s a good idea to review FHA home loan rules for manufactured housing, mobile homes, etc. The first requirement for an FHA home loan on a manufactured home/mobile home is that the home must be classified as a single-family dwelling. It must be no less that 400 square feet and must end up being affixed to a permanent foundation. Other requirements include having a HUD Certification Label affixed or the home must have “obtained a letter of label verification issued on behalf of HUD, evidencing the house was constructed on or after June 15, 1976, in | more...

 
Mortgage Loan Rate Trends

Mortgage Rate Trends: Higher After A Week Of Lows

Mortgage loan interest rates took a major dip last week, hitting best-execution lows of 3.5% at the height of the week’s improvements. But on Friday a “bounce” happened, pulling things back a bit. Some industry professionals feel it’s possible this move higher could be a correction or trend to come after the unusual week of lows we’ve seen, but it’s too early to tell. 30-year fixed rate conventional mortgage loans wound up at a best-execution 3.625%, which ends the week in territory that is still quite good. Some may regret if they missed out on the 3.5% best execution rate that appeared briefly last week, but these rates are still in a place we haven’t seen in a long time–some sources say these rates are reminiscent of the record lows | more...

 

HUD Proposes Changes To Manufactured Housing Standards

One common question asked by some about the FHA single-family home loan program is whether an FHA mortgage can be used to purchase an RV-type mobile home or a houseboat. The answer in both cases is no because a house boat or recreational vehicle/RV motor home cannot be affixed to a permanent foundation. Therefore they cannot be sold as “real property” under the law, which makes them ineligible for an FHA mortgage. The lines between recreational vehicles and manufactured housing or mobile homes can be blurry sometimes–why do some people confuse an RV with a mobile home? Foundation issues and real property status aside, it seems to be due to the fact that some people live out of their RVs in a similar way to a mobile home–they can be | more...

 

HUD Foreclosure Policy Updates: Reasonable Diligence and Delays

Recently the FHA and HUD updated guidance to lenders with regard to foreclosures and the “reasonable diligence” required to make sure the foreclosure action happens in a timely manner. One of the biggest complaints about the foreclosure process is how long it can take for a financial institution or the entity that is to take possession of the property to do so. The new HUD guidelines require lenders to act in a reasonable time frame. According to mortgagee letter HUDNo.16-003, “…when foreclosure of a defaulted loan is necessary, mortgagees must exercise reasonable diligence in prosecuting the foreclosure proceedings to completion and in acquiring title to and possession of the property. However, the mortgagee letter adds: “When certain delays in completing foreclosure and acquiring possession are caused by circumstances beyond the | more...