VA Activity

Browse articles from all of our Newsletters related to VA Activity.

September 23, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

PACE Guidance Not Reassuring, Too Many Uncertainties, Pitfalls

New FHA guidance for dealing with mortgages with a Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) obligation went into effect last week but uncertainty lingers and its full impact remains to be seen, according to an industry attorney. The Department of Housing and Urban Development has issued guidance specifically allowing properties encumbered by a PACE lien to be eligible for FHA mortgage financing for both purchase and refinance loans. The department of Veterans Affairs has issued similar guidance. According to Erika Sonstroem, an attorney with the law firm Bradley Arant Boult Cummings, the PACE industry is touting the guidance in its pitches to lenders as posing no risk to mortgage investors. PACE is a program that lends money to homeowners for home-energy savings projects. It is treated much like a tax lien on a property and is included in the ...


September 23, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

VA Issues Clarifying Guidance for Manufactured, Mobile Properties

VA Home Loan Guaranty has issued clarification regarding title requirements for manufactured or mobile homes conveyed to the Department of Veterans Affairs. Effective immediately, VA is requiring proof of noteholders’ compliance with the agency’s requirements for guaranteed mobile-home financing. Foreclosure title packages that do not include the required documents will be rejected, the agency warned. Under federal law, a manufactured home must be permanently affixed and classified as real property in the state where it is located. VA will not guarantee financing if the property does not meet the criteria. To ensure that a guaranty claim is fully payable and that the holder has the option to convey the manufactured home to VA, servicers must ensure that home loans with a VA guarantee meet federal requirements. Under the clarified VA guidelines, servicers may submit the ...


September 23, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

VA Shares Pointers to Help Avoid Delays in Processing COE Requests

The Department of Veterans Affairs has made recommendations to VA lenders and borrowers calling in with questions and problems at VA regional centers to avoid long wait times and have their concerns resolved as quickly as possible. In a recent memo to lenders, the VA Loan Guaranty Service is reporting that many of its regional loan centers (RLC) are being swamped with calls due to record increases in VA originations in recent months. While this suggests that more veterans are using their housing loan benefit than ever before, the large volume of calls to VA has caused long hold times for callers and delayed processing of borrower certificates of eligibility (COE). To cut down on the waiting time, the VA urged lenders and borrowers to consider several things before making the call. First, do not call to check on the status of a COE request if there is no urgent need, like an ...


September 23, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

VA Originations Stayed Strong in 2Q16 as Volume Rose 30 Percent

VA lenders recorded a strong first half for 2016, thanks to a substantial boost in production in the second quarter, agency data show. VA guarantees on purchase and refinance mortgages totaled $83.5 billion for the first six months, as lenders made a strong second-quarter push that brought production up by 29.9 percent. Streamlined refinancing, also known as Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loans (IRRRLs), comprised a hefty portion of total VA originations – 21.7 percent. VA has been particularly strong in the refinance segment over the last six months, racking up $44.3 billion in total refi volume, far exceeding FHA’s $36.4 billion and private mortgage insurers’ $21.6 billion. (see IFHA/VA Lending, 8/9/16.) Overall, FHA remained the top mortgage insurer in the government-backed lending market with $123.0 billion, compared to VA’s $84.8 billion. Loans with primate MI totaled $102.7 billion ... [ 1 chart ]


September 23, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Streamline Refi Segment Causing Problems for VA, Ginnie Investors

The Department of Veterans Affairs is working on a change to its existing streamline refinancing policy to address a problem that is giving VA and Ginnie Mae the fits. Under the VA’s qualified-mortgage rule, a VA borrower must wait six months and show six months’ worth of mortgage payments before they can refinance into an IRRRL (Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loan) and take advantage of the lower rate. However, it seems not all VA lenders are adhering to the rule and that a good number are refinancing veterans into IRRRLs even before the mandatory seasoning period ends for fear interest rates might rise and the borrower might not benefit from the lower rate. “I’ve redone the numbers in 20 different directions on how much a borrower would save if they had to wait two more months and the rate went up a quarter of a point because they lost those two months ...


September 9, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Around the Industry

Tennessee Lender Agrees to $70 million Settlement to Resolve Alleged FHA Violations. Franklin American Mortgage of Franklin, TN, has agreed to pay the federal government $70 million to resolve allegations of failing to comply with FHA requirements. Specifically, the direct endorsement lender allegedly engaged in improper underwriting of FHA loans between Jan. 1, 2006, and Dec. 31, 2012, which later resulted in submission of claims and substantial losses to the FHA insurance fund. Franklin entered into a settlement agreement with the Department of Justice and the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Inspector General. As part of the settlement, Franklin acknowledged “it engaged in certain conduct in connection with its origination, underwriting, and quality control of certain single-family residential mortgage loans insured by FHA.” The settlement was neither an admission of ...


September 9, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

FHA/VA: Financing of Choice for Purchase Borrowers in 13 States

Homebuyers in two housing markets encompassing 13 states relied more on FHA and VA than other types financing, according to a new industry study of new single-family homes started in 2015. A study by the National Association of Home Builders found, among other things, that government-backed purchase lending and other forms of non-conventional mortgage financing remained elevated in 2015. For example, homebuyers in the South Atlantic and West South Central regions favored FHA and VA loans over other types of home-purchase financing. States in the South Atlantic region include Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia. Washington, DC, is also in this region. West South Central states are comprised of Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma and Texas. Together, the two regions accounted for more than 26 percent and 21 percent of the ...


September 9, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Ginnie Mae MBS Issuance Up in August as Upward Trend Continues

Ginnie Mae issued $46.5 billion of single-family mortgage-backed securities in August, up slightly from July, according to an analysis of Ginnie data. Single-family MBS monthly issuance in August was the highest monthly volume so far this year. Total issuance also was up 12.3 percent from the same month last year., Strong purchase and refinance originations in the second quarter helped push production in the third quarter. Although purchase loans with private mortgage insurance outpaced gains in FHA and VA loans in the second quarter, deliveries to Ginnie so far appear to indicate a strong third quarter. Meanwhile, VA volume has been fueled largely by refinance activity over the past few years and does not appear to be letting up. PennyMac and Freedom Mortgage battled for first place with $4.35 billion and $4.34 billion, respectively, in MBS issuance in August. Despite cutting back on its ... [1 chart]


September 9, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

VA Note Rate Lower than FHA, Private MIs; VA Refis Dominate

VA refinance mortgages accounted for the biggest share of total insured refis during the first six months of 2016, according to an Inside FHA/VA Lending analysis of agency refi data. On a monthly basis, VA refi totals exceeded refis with FHA and private mortgage insurance, peaking at $9.3 billion (58.1 percent of total VA originations) in April. Over the six-month period, the refi share of VA loans securitized by Ginnie Mae averaged 52.3 percent, compared to 29.6 percent for FHA and 21.0 percent for private MI loans securitized by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. In terms of total volume, however, FHA held a commanding lead, $123.0 billion, over private MIs ($102.7 billion) and VA ($84.8 billion). Interestingly, the average interest rate on VA refi loans, 3.6 percent, over the six-month period was lower than FHA’s and private MIs’ note rates of 3.9 percent and 4.0 percent, respectively. There is no clear ... [1 chart]


August 26, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Purchase Lending Fires Up FHA in First Half, Refis Push VA Volume

FHA saw a modest rise in originations midway through 2016 compared to the same period last year, but VA did a lot better with a double-digit increase in loan production, according to an analysis of Ginnie Mae data. Lenders delivered $123.0 billion of FHA-insured loans to Ginnie pools during the first half of 2016, up 8.4 percent from the previous year. FHA’s midyear production was driven by a surge in purchase-mortgage lending in the second quarter, which also pushed volume higher for VA as well as conventional-conforming mortgages. Government-backed lending rose 32.3 percent from the first quarter to approximately $131.0 billion in second-quarter originations, according to Inside Mortgage Finance, an affiliate publication of Inside FHA/VA Lending. It was the highest three-month total for government-insured lending on record, although private mortgage insurance did more business in the ... [2 charts]


Poll

After the November elections, how long will it take for a new Congress and White House to pass GSE reform legislation?

I’m confident a bill will be passed the first year.
2 to 3 years. GSE reform is complicated.
Sadly it won’t happen in a Clinton or Trump first term.
Not in my lifetime.

vote to see results
Housing Pulse