FHA and VA Increase Loan Limits for 2017

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FHA and VA increase loan limits for 2017

 

Last week, we announced the news that the FHFA increased conforming loan limits. As a result, the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and Department of Veteran Affairs (VA) have also increased the limits for FHA loans and VA loans, respectively.

FHA loan limits have increased from $271,050 to $275,665. These new loan limits apply to FHA-insured loans that have an application date of January 1, 2017 or later.
VA loan limits will follow the new limits set for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac conforming loans. The VA will use these limits to determine how much of the loan they will guaranty and how much an eligible veteran can borrow without requiring a down payment. Veterans should consult their loan officer for further details. You can also visit the Department of Veteran Affairs website for additional information about VA home loans.

A loan limits will follow the new limits set for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac conforming loans. The VA will use these limits to determine how much of the loan they will guaranty and how much an eligible veteran can borrow without requiring a down payment. Veterans should consult their loan officer for further details. You can also visit the Department of Veteran Affairs website for additional information about VA home loans.

If you are looking to buy a home in 2017, this is excellent news for you! With rising home prices and the market’s return to pre-recession growth, the loan limit increase signifies a growing market. Many homebuyers will now be able to afford larger homes or homes in more expensive areas with better loan terms. If you need help getting started on your home loan journey, check out our blog for more details on the home buying process, FHA loans, and VA loans.

 

 

FHA & VA Loan Programs

fha_vaFHA & VA Loan Programs

With mortgage rates still low, now is a great time to buy! There are many different loan options out there today that make buying a home achievable, and it is important to understand your options throughout the home buying process. Continuing our discussion on government loans from last week, we want to take some time to discuss your options with FHA & VA loan programs.

 

FHA Mortgage Loans

The FHA, or Federal Housing Administration, offers a low down payment option that can help low income or first time homebuyers purchase a home. Since the Federal Housing Administration insures your mortgage, individual lenders may be more willing to give you loan terms that make it easier for you to qualify. To qualify, you must have proof of steady employment and clear CAIVRS, which is the government’s Credit Alert Interactive Verification Reporting system, to qualify. CAIVRS is a database of those who have defaulted on government loans, owe back taxes, or have other federal debt. If you are on this list, you will not be able to receive the loan unless you can get your report cleared.

Compared to other loan programs, FHA has lower credit score requirements. It does, however, require a minimum score of 580 to qualify for a low down payment. If you are concerned about your credit score, consult your loan officer to find out if you might still qualify. These loans can also have a lower down payment requirement than a conventional loan. Conventional guidelines call for two months of asset reserves at closing, meaning two months of mortgage payments, including taxes and property insurance. FHA has no reserve requirements which means less money spent at the closing table.

Not only can closing costs be paid for by the seller, but the down payment of an FHA loan can also be gifted to the homebuyer. This has become a trend for buyers who are getting married and prefer that their gifts go towards a down payment on a home rather than a wedding registry. If you are getting a gift for your down payment, make sure you document it by getting a gift letter from the person you receive the gift from and be able to document any large deposits to your bank account. This will be required when your application is looked at by an underwriter.

It is important to note that FHA loans can only be used towards the purchase of a primary residence, so if you are looking to purchase a second home or vacation home, you will need to look at other programs. In addition to FHA purchase loans, other FHA options include streamlined and cash-out refinancing, as well as FHA 203k rehabilitation loans, which allow you to combine renovations and the purchase of your home into one loan.

 

VA Loans

If you have served our country, you may qualify for a VA loan. These loans are available for active, non-active, and retired Army, Air Force, Marine, Navy, National Guard, and Coast Guard vets who meet the established service requirements. To qualify, the veteran must have served on active duty and have a discharge other than dishonorable after a minimum of 90 days of service during wartime or a minimum or 181 continuous days during peacetime. There is a two-year requirement if the veteran enlisted and began service after September 7, 1980 or was an officer and began service after October 16, 1981. There is six-year requirement for National Guards and reservists with certain criteria and there are specific rules concerning the eligibility of surviving spouses.

VA loans offer many great benefits to veterans that are worth looking into eligibility for. These benefits include:

  • No Down Payment
  • No monthly mortgage insurance (PMI)
  • Gift Funds are acceptable for closing costs
  • No Cash reserves requirement
  • A variety of terms or loan types available
  • Available for purchase and refinance
  • Reduced costs for disabled veterans
  • Seller can pay closing costs
  • Seller pays for any required repairs
  • No pre-payment penalty

Both of these programs can offer many great benefits to qualified borrowers. If you think one of these programs would be a good match for you, contact one of your local Inlanta Mortgage loan officers to get pre-approved today!

 

OUR MISSION STATEMENT

Our mission is to be the home financing partner that you trust to serve your family, friends, and community. Through our family of dedicated mortgage professionals, our commitment is to deliver an exceptional experience. Our unwavering dedication to integrity, honesty, and ethics is the foundation of all of our relationships.

ABOUT INLANTA MORTGAGE

Headquartered in Brookfield, Wis., Inlanta Mortgage was established in 1993. The company has grown to 35 branches in 16 states and over 240 employees. Inlanta Mortgage offers Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac agency products, as well as jumbo and portfolio programs. The company is an agency approved lender for Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, FHA/VA, FHA 203K and USDA. Inlanta Mortgage also offers numerous state bond agency programs.

Inlanta Mortgage was recently named a Top Workplace for a third time in 2016. Inlanta has also received the Platinum Million Dollar USDA Lender Award and has been recognized as a Top Mortgage Employer by National Mortgage Professional and a Top 100 Mortgage Banking Company and 100 Best Mortgage Companies to Work For by Mortgage Executive Magazine.

PARTNERSHIP OPPORTUNITIES

Inlanta Mortgage continues to expand its branch network and encourages ethical lending professionals to learn more about our support platform and discover how an Inlanta branch partnership with Inlanta Mortgage is essential to long-term success.

Locate an Inlanta Mortgage loan officer at www.inlanta.com/locations. For current employment opportunities, visit www.inlanta.com/join-our-team/employment-opportunities. Learn more about Inlanta Mortgage branch partnership opportunities at www.inlantapartners.com, call 262-439-4260, or email partners@inlanta.com.

Inlanta Mortgage, Inc. NMLS #1016.

Deadline for FHA Borrowers

FHA Deadlines

Borrowers should be aware of some important FHA deadlines.

Many of us rely on low down payment mortgage options when seeking to become a home owner. FHA mortgages, backed by the Federal Housing Administration, are one low down payment mortgage loan option.

Increasing Monthly Insurance Premiums

While the 3.5% minimum down payment option will continue, monthly payments for borrowers who opt for an FHA mortgage will soon be facing higher monthly payments. Why? The FHA is changing its policies and will increase the monthly insurance premium borrowers pay. To avoid this increase in monthly insurance premiums, borrowers must apply for an FHA mortgage loan no later than March 28th and the lender they apply with must obtain a valid case number by March 29th.

If you are considering a home purchase and think the 3.5% down payment option would be your best option – contact a licensed mortgage loan officer as soon as possible so you are not subject to the premium increase in effect beginning April 1st.

Another FHA Mortgage Insurance Premium Change

Another policy change that may encourage you to begin your loan application sooner (than later) is the FHA’s decision to make mortgage insurance mandatory for either a minimum of 11 years or the life of the mortgage loan based on the Loan-to-Value (LTV) at the time of the loan closing effective for all case numbers assigned on or after June 3rd. Currently, the insurance fee is dropped once the outstanding balance falls to 78 percent of the home’s value or 5 years from the date when the money was borrowed.

We don’t mean to pressure! We just want those in the market for a new home to realize the cost savings that can be realized by getting an application in before March 28th.

Inlanta Mortgage loan officers can answer your specific questions and help you determine if an FHA mortgage loan is right for you.

Inlanta Mortgage is proudly celebrating twenty years in business. Learn more about Inlanta’s twenty year history here.

Inlanta Mortgage offers Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac agency products, as well as a full suite of jumbo and portfolio programs. The company is fully delegated HUD-FHA including FHA 203K, VA, and USDA approved. Inlanta Mortgage also offers numerous state bond agency programs. Review Inlanta’s mortgage loan programs here.

Inlanta Mortgage is a multi-state mortgage banker based out of Brookfield, Wisconsin. NMLS# 1016. Inlanta Mortgage is proud to be a recent recipient of a 2012 Top Workplace Award.

 

 

FHA Streamline Refinancing – Fee Reductions on Horizon

FHA Streamline Refinance Mortgage Insurance Fees Going Down

On June 11, 2012, the Federal Housing Administration will provide relief to certain homeowners with existing FHA mortgages that want to refinance using the FHA’s Streamline Refinance program. This relief will come in the form of reduced upfront mortgage insurance payments and reduced monthly insurance premiums.

The new FHA Streamline Refinance annual premium, which is paid monthly by the borrower, will now be .55% on a streamline refinance of any loan endorsed on or before May 31, 2009. This is a much lower premium rate than the current FHA Streamline rate of 1.2% – 1.25%. The upfront mortgage insurance premium (UFMIP) is a one-time fee collected by FHA and added to the loan balance. FHA recently announced an increase of UFMIP to 1.75% starting April 1st, but as of June 11th this new FHA Streamline Refinance UFMIP rate is only .01% when the previous loan was endorsed on or before May 31, 2009.  All other streamline refinances will still be subject to the UFMIP rate of 1.75%.

FHA Streamline Refinances are the fastest, simplest way for homeowners with FHA mortgages to refinance. Another defining characteristic of the FHA Streamline Refinance program is that a home appraisal is optional. Instead of a new home appraisal, the FHA will allow you to use the original loan’s appraised value as your home’s current value, regardless of what your home is worth today. This may be quite helpful to homeowners who suffered reductions in home values since 2007.

A licensed mortgage loan officer can help you determine if you meet the requirements to be eligible for the reduced premiums available and if a FHA Streamline Refinance is right for you. Click here to find a mortgage loan professional near you.

Inlanta Mortgage offers Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac agency products, as well as a full suite of jumbo and portfolio programs. The company is fully delegated HUD-FHA including FHA 203K, VA, and USDA approved. Inlanta Mortgage also offers numerous state bond agency programs. Review Inlanta’s mortgage loan programs here.

Inlanta Mortgage is a multi-state mortgage banker based out of Brookfield, Wisconsin. NMLS# 1016.

 

FHA 203K Streamline Mortgages – Give a Home Some TLC

FHA 203K Streamline Mortgage Loans

We’ve been bombarded with news about the number of vacant and foreclosed homes on the market. Many of these homes are the in the perfect location and are in the right price range ….but need a little tender loving care.  There is a mortgage loan program that addresses this issue – the FHA 203k Streamline Mortgage Loan.

FHA 203K Streamline Mortgage Loans

The FHA 203K Streamline Mortgage program gives you the ability to refinance or purchase a home in need of repairs by allowing you to include the cost of repairs in the loan. This program is guaranteed by the U.S Department of Housing and Urban Development and permits homebuyers to finance an additional $35,000 into their mortgage to improve or upgrade their home before move-in.

The FHA 203K Streamline mortgage loan program has been instrumental to neighborhood revitalization efforts.

The following repairs are eligible under the FHA 203K Streamline Mortgage loan program:

  • Repair/Replacement of roofs, gutters and downspouts
  • Repair/Replace/Upgrade of existing HVAC systems
  • Repair/Replace/Upgrade of plumbing and electrical systems
  • Repair/Replacement of existing flooring
  • Minor remodeling, such as kitchens and baths
  • Exterior and interior painting
  • Weatherization that includes storm windows and doors, insulation, weather stripping, etc.
  • Non-structural improvements for accessibility for persons with disabilities
  • Discretionary repair items that may not have been included in the appraisal, such as, repair of exterior decks, basement waterproofing, etc.

FHA 203K Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Is the 203k Streamline for purchases only?
A: No, the Streamline 203k may be used for a purchase or a refinance. It may also be used to purchase a REO (Real Estate Owned) property.

Q: Who is responsible for repairs?
A: The homebuyer/owner pays for the repairs from the loan proceeds.

Q: Do repairs have to be completed before the loan closing?
A: No, the repairs may begin after the loan is closed.

Q: Do I have to hire a general contractor?
A: If the repairs require more than one contractor, the mortgagor must utilize the services of a licensed general contractor.

Q: Do I have to hire an FHA Consultant?
A: No, to eliminate the need and cost for an inspection of the completed repairs, the lender may accept receipts from the contractor or proof of completion of the work to the homeowner’s satisfaction.

Q: What repairs are not allowable?
A: Repairs that are considered major rehabilitation or requiring structural modification. For more information on purchasing a home requiring major rehabiliation or structural modification contact a licensed mortgage loan officer near you.

Q: What is the maximum that can be spent on repairs?
A: Rehab costs, plus applicable contingency reserves and fees cannot exceed $35,000.

Q: Who receives payment for the repairs?
A: Up to two payments may be made to the contractor or the homeowner.

Q: How much down payment do I need?
A: As with most FHA mortgage loan programs, the minimum investment is 3.5%.

Q: What about construction fees?
A: Most construction fees (i.e.: loan discount points, title update costs, permit costs) may be financed in the loan.

The FHA 203K Streamline Mortgage Loan program can help you give a fixer upper a little tender loving care. The FHA 203K Streamline Mortgage loan process can be explained in more detail by a licensed mortgage loan officer. Click here to find a mortgage loan officer near you. If you would like to jump right into the application process, click here to begin your Inlanta Mortgage loan application.

Need a little refresher on mortgage loans in general? Check out our blog post Mortgage Loan Basics.

Inlanta Mortgage is a multi-state mortgage banker based out of Brookfield, Wisconsin. NMLS# 1016.

Inlanta Mortgage is not acting on behalf of or at the direction of HUD/FHA or the Federal government.