FHA Programs

Browse articles from all of our Newsletters related to FHA Programs.

May 20, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

VA Clarifies Guidance for Conveying Titled Properties to VA Secretary

The Department of Veterans Affairs has clarified the type of documents lenders would need to provide clear and marketable title for conveyed properties to the VA in all states and U.S. territories. Under VA rules, each conveyance or transfer of real property to the VA shall be acceptable if “the holder covenants or warrants against the acts of the holder and those claiming under the holder (e.g. by special warranty deed).” In addition, the conveyance would be acceptable if it entitles the VA Secretary to such title as is or if it is acceptable to prudent lenders, informed buyers, title companies and attorneys, generally in the community in which the property is located. The VA said its determination of clear and marketable title depends on state statutory requirements. As a general requirement, documents for proper conveyance of clear and marketable title to the VA include the ...


May 20, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

VA Issues New Servicing Guidance, Reminders on Foreclosures, Others

The Department of Veterans Affairs has issued new guidance and some servicing reminders in connection with mobile-home foreclosures, consent judgments, servicer transfers, liquidation appraisal fees and others. VA servicers must specifically refer to the mobile home in foreclosure declaration documents to ensure that both the home and the land are properly foreclosed, the VA said. Many states require two separate foreclosure procedures for every transaction – one to foreclose the interest on the land and the other to foreclose on the title of the mobile home. The VA said foreclosure on the title of the mobile home may have to be filed with state’s Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). When a VA loan on a home on wheels is referred to foreclosure, the servicer must inform the foreclosing attorney that it is a mobile home and whether a DMV filing is required. The VA will reconvey the mobile home to the ...


May 20, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Key Lessons for FHA Lenders from M&T Bank, Guild FCA Lawsuits

There are important details in the recent M&T Bank settlement with the Department of Justice and in this week’s announced filing of a lawsuit against Guild Mortgage that could help lenders avoid a potential false claims lawsuit, according to industry observers. The government’s complaints against the two FHA lenders were brought under the False Claims Act, which penalizes acts that intend to defraud the government and taxpayers. The government has been using this powerful statutory tool in the mortgage arena in its attempt to recover FHA losses arising from fraud and noncompliance with agency requirements. As in previous FCA cases against FHA lenders, both M&T Bank and Guild Mortgage were accused of false certification, lax underwriting, poor quality control, failure to review early payment defaults, and failure to self-report deficient loans and remediate problems in a timely manner. In addition, the ...


May 20, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Attorneys See Potential Defense In Recent Circuit Court Rulings

Recent circuit court rulings may bolster FHA lenders’ defense against the government’s heavy use of the False Claims Act in FHA lending cases, according to industry attorneys. In the years following the financial crisis, the Department of Justice and the relators bar have used the FCA aggressively to target banks and nonbank mortgage lenders for losses incurred by FHA due to poor underwriting and false certifications. The DOJ and the Department of Housing and Urban Development have recovered billions of dollars through settlements with various mortgage lenders and servicers, using increasingly creative theories of liability to hold them responsible for FHA losses. This week, the DOJ filed a lawsuit in federal court in Washington, DC, accusing Guild Mortgage of improper origination and underwriting of FHA-insured mortgage loans from January 2006 through December 2011. As in ...


May 20, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Deconsolidation Opened Credit Access, New Things to Think About

The rapid deconsolidation in the Ginnie Mae issuer community and shift to nonbanks helped expand access for borrowers, but it’s also given the agency new issues to consider, officials said. Back in 2010-11, three Ginnie issuers dominated the program, noted Ginnie Mae President Ted Tozer during the Mortgage Bankers Association secondary-market conference in New York this week. But those three firms now account for just 14 percent of the agency’s business, and nonbanks held a combined 70 percent of the market, he said. Many new firms became issuers in part so they could get away from the credit overlays imposed by the national aggregators, Tozer said. The result is that the average score on a Ginnie loan is now 60 points lower than on loans securitized by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, he added. Michael Drayne, senior vice president in Ginnie’s office of issuer & portfolio management, said the ...


May 20, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

FHA Originations Decline in 1Q16, Production Improves Year-over-Year

FHA activity was lackluster in the first three months of 2016 as loan originations fell 7.8 percent from the prior quarter, according to Inside FHA/VA Lending’s analysis of agency data. The weak first-quarter production of $53.5 billion appeared to continue a trend from 2015, which saw the fourth quarter close with $58.1 billion, down significantly from $73.7 billion in the third quarter. In contrast, FHA originations fared better year-over year. Loan production was up 35.6 percent in the first quarter compared to the same period last year. Purchase lending totaled $36.5 billion in the first three months with overall production trending downward during the period. Borrowers in the 640-679 and 680-719 credit score ranges made up the bulk of new endorsements for January and February, the latest FHA data show. It is unlikely that trend will change even if March endorsements were added. Between all ... [ 2 charts ]


May 20, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

HARP Participation Numbers Continue to Dwindle, FHFA Plans Push as Program Heads for Moth Balls

Activity in the Home Affordable Refinance Program continued to dwindle in the first quarter of 2016 as the post-housing crisis initiative winds down before expiring at the end of the year. HARP refinances fell to just 19,989 in the first quarter, down 5.2 percent from the previous period and off 36.8 percent from a year ago, according to a new Federal Housing Finance Agency report. While both government-sponsored enterprises saw a decline in volume, Freddie Mac volume was...[Includes one data table]


May 6, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

VA Orders Special Forbearance for Borrowers in Flood Disaster Areas

The Department of Veterans Affairs has called upon holders of VA-guaranteed single-family mortgage loans to extend forbearance to distressed homeowners affected by the severe storms and flooding in Louisiana and Texas. In recent guidance, the VA described measures VA lenders may employ to provide relief to disaster-stricken homeowners. The agency recommended careful counseling to see whether borrower difficulties are related to the storms or have been the result of other events. If appropriate, prepayments may be reapplied to cure or prevent a borrower default. Servicers also may consider loan modification without VA’s prior approval if certain regulatory conditions are met. Although the holder of the loan is ultimately responsible for determining when to initiate foreclosure or complete termination action, the VA has requested a 90-day freeze on ...


May 6, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Low Private MI Pricing Could Draw Quality Borrowers Away from FHA

Two studies published this week have found that reduced pricing and declining costs have given conventional mortgages with private mortgage insurance an edge over FHA in the battle for high-quality borrowers. When FHA reduced its annual premium by half a percent for most forward loans 15 months ago, FHA mortgages offered a more affordable payment option for borrowers compared to private MI, according to a new Urban Institute study. FHA’s lower mortgage insurance premium benefited particularly those who could afford a monthly mortgage payment but don’t have the required 20 percent downpayment as well as borrowers with pristine credit, wrote authors Laurie Goodman, director of UI’s Housing Finance Policy Center, and researcher Bing Bai. Until FHA’s 2015 premium cut, private MI was picking up some market share. The FHA price adjustment pushed FHA’s share to ...


May 6, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Active-Duty Homebuyers Tend to be Younger, Prefer VA Loan Financing

Younger, active-service soldiers are outpacing non-military homebuyers under the age of 35 in home purchase – and they are buying larger, more expensive homes with VA loans, according to a new National Association of Realtors survey. The NAR survey, 2016 Veterans & Active Military Home Buyers and Sellers Profile, found quite a few contrasts between active-service military homebuyers and those who have never served. Of all homebuyers, 18 percent were veterans and 3 percent were in active military service. Of all home sellers, 21 percent were vets and 1 percent were active-military. According to the survey, the typical active-service homebuyer was a lot younger (median age of 34 years old) than non-military buyers (40 years old). The active-military homebuyer was more likely to be married and have several children living in the household. Consequently, they prefer larger single-family homes. Interestingly, the ...


May 6, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Senate Panel Approves FHA IT Funding, Rejects Proposed Fee

Senate appropriators have opted to set aside fiscal 2017 funding for FHA information technology upgrades rather than authorize the agency to charge lenders an administrative fee to pay for improvements. The committee approved the funding as part of its proposed Housing and Urban Development-Transportation budget for FY 2017. Appropriators set aside $13 million in specific funds for FHA IT improvements. HUD proposed that up to $30 million in fees would be charged to lenders on endorsements through Sept. 30, 2019. Collections from such fees would be credited as offsetting collections to the Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund. Specifically, HUD sought to use the collections to partially offset a requested $160 million funding for improvements to administrative contract support, FHA staffing and information technology. Congress has rejected the ...


May 6, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Correspondent Channel Plays Huge Role in 1Q FHA Purchase Lending

Retail loan originations account for most new VA lending, but the correspondent channel plays an outsized role in the FHA market, especially in purchase-mortgage lending, according to a new analysis of Ginnie Mae mortgage-backed securities data by Inside FHA/VA Lending. Over half (51.1 percent) of VA loans securitized through Ginnie MBS in the first quarter of 2016 were retail originations, but only 39.1 percent of FHA loans came through that channel. The biggest source of FHA loans was correspondent lenders, which accounted for 45.8 percent of loans securitized during the first three months of this year. That was actually slightly below the 49.2 percent correspondent share of FHA loans back in 2014 and 46.8 percent last year. Correspondents accounted for well over half (53.9 percent) of FHA purchase mortgages during the first quarter, while playing a more ... [ 3 charts ]


May 6, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

Agency MBS Market Springs to Life in April, But 2016 Production Still Trails Last Year’s Pace

A surge of new refinance business and a seasonal uptick in purchase-mortgage activity helped lift agency issuance of single-family MBS in April, according to a new Inside MBS & ABS analysis and ranking. Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae produced $108.95 billion of new single-family MBS last month, the strongest monthly output since September 2015. Gross new issuance was up 9.8 percent from March, but on a year-to-date basis, production was still down 3.9 percent from the volume generated in the first four months of 2015. Ginnie saw...[Includes two data tables]


April 28, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Mortgage Originations Hold Fairly Steady in Early 2016 But Results Vary Significantly Among Top Lenders

Mortgage lenders that have excelled at originating refinance loans posted steady and improving originations during the first quarter of 2016 while competitors that are more focused on the purchase-mortgage market generally saw declining production levels. A new Inside Mortgage Finance analysis and ranking shows that first-lien mortgage originations totaled an estimated $380.0 billion during the first three months of 2016, down slightly from the fourth quarter of last year. That estimate could change as more information becomes available, especially from major nonbank lenders that have not yet reported first-quarter originations data. Agency indicators were...[Includes two data tables]


April 22, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

HUD Sets Up Joint FHA/VA System To Prescreen Mortgage Applicants

The Department of Housing and Urban Development has issued a notice to establish a computer-matching program between FHA and the VA that would enable the two agencies to prescreen mortgage applicants. The notice was published in the April 15 Federal Register. The computer-matching program would allow HUD to incorporate VA debtor files into the department’s Credit Alert Verification Reporting System (CAVRS). Consequently, both the FHA and VA would be able to prescreen loan applicants and identify who is delinquent or in default on a federally guaranteed mortgage loan. The use of CAVRS would allow HUD to monitor its FHA programs better and prevent the extension of credit to individuals who are delinquent or in default on their obligations to HUD and other federal agencies. Meanwhile, VA expects to achieve savings through risk reduction and ...


April 22, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

VA Guidance Clarifies Compliance With TRID Disclosure Requirements

The Department of Veterans Affairs has issued new guidance clarifying how VA lenders should comply with the disclosure requirements of the new TRID rule. TRID, which stands for Truth in Lending Act-Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act Integrated Disclosures, was adopted in final form by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on Oct. 3, 2015. Specifically, TRID establishes new requirements regarding mortgage disclosure forms, which lenders must use for all home loans. Lenders are required to itemize the services and fees they charge to borrowers on the TRID disclosure forms, instead of on the HUD-1 closing statement, in connection with a loan application to purchase or refinance an existing mortgage. However, switching from the HUD-1 to the TRID form has caused uncertainty among VA lenders as to how to complete the new forms. VA’s TRID guidance lays out ...


April 22, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

VA Paced Growth in Government- Insured Servicing During 1Q16

The Ginnie Mae servicing market continued to grow during the first three months of 2016, with most of the impetus coming from the VA home loan guaranty program. A new Inside FHA/VA Lending analysis of mortgage-backed securities data reveals that the amount of Ginnie servicing outstanding swelled to $1.544 trillion as of the end of March, a 1.65 percent gain from the previous quarter. Because issuer-servicers regularly repurchase seriously delinquent loans out of Ginnie MBS pools, the actual volume of government-insured loans outstanding was somewhat higher. The VA program saw the most growth, increasing by 3.25 percent in just three months, while FHA servicing in Ginnie MBS rose only 0.96 percent from December 2015. Servicing of rural housing loans guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture was up 1.34 percent, while the FHA insurance program for Native Americans ... {4 charts]


April 21, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

FHA Eases Rules for Qualifying Borrowers with Student Loan Payments Should Help First-timers Get Home Loans

Borrowers saddled with student loan debt now have a better chance of qualifying for an FHA mortgage, thanks to a recent change in the way lenders factor such payments in the calculation of a borrower’s debt-to-income ratio. Under newly revised guidance announced by the FHA recently, lenders may apply the same calculation criteria used in the mortgage industry regardless of the type of student loan-payment plan (such as income-based payment plans) or a deferred-payment plan. Currently, there are...


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