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Tag Archives: HUD

FHA Program for Underwater Borrowers Now Underway

Tuesday marked the start of a new government housing program designed to help the millions of Americans who owe more on the mortgage than their home is worth. The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) is now offering certain non-FHA borrowers with negative equity the chance to refinance into a new FHA-insured loan, as long as existing lien holders will write off at least 10 percent of the unpaid principal balance. Officials suggest the program will provide 500,000 to 1.5 million underwater borrowers with new mortgages, but analysts say the number is closer to 250,000.

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FHA Keeps Delinquency Rate Steady, Issues New Premium Guidelines

After falling for five straight months, the Federal Housing Administration's (FHA) delinquency rate held steady in July at 8.3 percent. At the beginning of 2010, the rate stood at 9.4 percent. HUD also issued guidelines for FHA's new insurance premium structure, which takes effect next month. The annual premium will increase from 0.55 percent to between 0.85 percent and 0.90 percent of the loan amount. At the same time, though, the upfront premium has been reduced by 100 basis points from the current 2.25 percent.

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REOs the Topic du Jour in Washington

Neighborhoods across the country are riddled with empty bank-owned homes and unoccupied foreclosures that erode neighboring property values and open the door for blight and criminal activity. The nation's glut of vacant REOs took center stage in Washington Wednesday. HUD announced a new nationwide REO ""First Look"" program, in partnership with the nation's largest mortgage lenders, and it was the first of a two-day Federal Reserve summit to examine the community impacts of foreclosed and vacant properties.

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Will the Administration Bring Back the Homebuyer Tax Credit?

After a worse than expected falloff in home sales during the month of July, buzz about a possible revival of the federal homebuyer tax credit has begun to surface. Sales of previously owned homes plummeted 27 percent last month, hitting their lowest mark in 15 years. New home sales also took a dive, dropping nearly 13 percent. HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan says the July numbers were worse than was expected and are cause for concern, and he's not ruling out a return of the tax credit incentives.

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Industry Stakeholders Descend on Washington to Debate GSE Reform

Will Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac still be here in three years? Or will they be replaced by a new federal mortgage agency? Or will the government begin a grand exodus from the housing market and leave the conveyance of the American Dream to the private sector? These were the questions addressed Tuesday at the administration's housing finance conference in Washington - a discussion that the Treasury says will help shape its proposal for the future of the housing finance system, including the structure of the nation's two largest mortgage companies.

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FHA’s Insurance Premium Changes to Take Effect in October

The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) has decided to delay the planned adjustments to its insurance premium structure by one month, after the industry expressed concerns about being ready in time. The premium fee changes will become effective October 4, 2010. Lawmakers gave the federal mortgage insurer enough leeway to increase the annual fee it charges borrowers three-fold, up to 1.55 percent. But the annual premium is not going to go that high. It will increase from 0.55 percent to between 0.85 percent and 0.90 percent of the loan amount.

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Treasury Releases Guest List for Next Week’s Housing Finance Forum

Undoubtedly, the model of home financing is in for a change. And the structural bastions of the nation's mortgage system - Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac - are at the very center of the debate. Ideas range from completely eliminating the two GSEs to turning them into official government agencies. Next week, Treasury will host a conference in Washington, D.C. on the subject, to gather input and suggestions from industry stakeholders. On Thursday, the administration released its guest list for the event.

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Government Earmarks $3B for Unemployed Homeowners

The Obama administration said Wednesday that it will provide additional support to help unemployed homeowners through two targeted initiatives. The Treasury will make another $2 billion available to housing finance agencies in 17 states and the District of Columbia to implement local programs for unemployed homeowners. HUD is also launching a $1 billion program to provide up to 24 months of assistance to homeowners who are at risk of foreclosure because of lost income.

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HUD to Award $79 Million in Grants to Housing Counselors Nationwide

HUD recently announced the availability of $79 million in grants for a broad range of housing counseling programs to help families find and preserve housing. This represents an increase of $21 million, or 27 percent, over last year's funding. According to HUD, these grants will be awarded competitively to approximately 550 HUD-approved counseling agencies and state housing finance agencies across the nation to help families stave off foreclosure, avoid mortgage scams, and improve their credit scores.

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U.S. Reps Partner With HUD, Treasury to Prevent Foreclosures in Atlanta

U.S. Reps. John Lewis, David Scott, and Hank Johnson have joined forces with HUD, the U.S. Department of Treasury, the HOPE NOW Alliance, and NeighborWorks America for an upcoming event aimed at helping financially troubled homeowners in the Atlanta area. The event, dubbed the ""Help for Homeowners"" project, is scheduled for July 30 and July 31. Nearly 20 of the area's top lenders will be available at the event to meet one-on-one with area residents who are struggling to pay their mortgages. The event, dubbed the Help for Homeowners project, is scheduled for July 30 and July 31.

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