203k Made SIMPLE? Yes, for your clients..........

Real Estate Agent with Hale Real Estate

this is a great blog on how to use 203K loans from FhA.

thanks Colleen

Mim Heisey



Original content by Colleen Craig NMLS #254430


Ok, maybe not, but I will attempt to make it as simple as possible for the client to understand and want to read on.  For many of us in the business who are " in the know"  we forget that we need to go back to the basics and spell it out in simple terms for others to understand.  So I've compiled some information based on my most recent commonly asked questions just this week.

In Southern California, FHA loans were just not utilized over the past 10 or so years because of the FHA Maximum Mortgage limits  But now that the limits have been increased and the prices have decreased, FHA loans have become the most utilized loan in recent months.  HOWEVER, because it was not a popluar loan, you would be amazed at how many lenders/brokers do not know what they are doing.  Especially when it comes to the 203k loan.  I spoke to a client today that was given such mis information it made me cringe. 


 Apparently they told the client that 203k loans were no longer being done (Gee, you think it was after realizing that they had no idea what they were doing?) and they tried to flip them into another loan. This was after telling my client that their loan amount would be for the contract price and the extra money would just be separate and sit in an impound account to be disbursed over the next 6 months.  Ok partially true, the extra amount would be in escrow to be disbursed as the remodel progressed, but for free? Who pays for the extra 50,000 dollars you just borrowed for repairs? Your loan amount is for the entire amount you are borrowing.  Makes sense right? 

So what is a 203k loan and why use one?

When a buyer wants to buy a home that needs repairs utilizing FHA financing, normally the repairs would have to be completed prior to the close of escrow.   The repairs would normally fall on the responsiblity of the seller.  With so many foreclosures in today's market, the bank is the seller.  And many times the home in need of repair is listed "as is".  Which in the past would require a cash buyer or conventional financing.  This is another reason that people in the business decided to shy away from FHA loans.  I believe it was pure ignorance of the programs that were available by the brokers and the realtors couldn't properly prepare their seller for what to expect that gave FHA loans a bitter taste. 

 My associate Jeff Belonger said it best in his post about ignoring what your listing agent tells you about FHA loans

Here we go....203k loans for dummies 


*  203k loans allow you to FINANCE the cost of the repairs in the new loan amount. (Not to exceed 110% of the after improved value determined by the appraiser and 203k consultant) What does this mean?  I buy a house for 200,000 that needs 50,000 in repairs and I can borrow the extra 50,000?  Too good to be true?  NOPE.  That's it in a nutshell....

ok details please.........

*  Down payment is basesd on the sale price PLUS the final cost of the repairs x 3.5% so for example:

Sale price is 200,000 (DO not calculate 3.5% on this)  PLUS 50,000 in repairs/costs (which includes certain costs and reserves the lender will require) 250,000 x 3.5%.  Down payment is $8750.00 (closing costs are separate as usual)

* Buyer will hire (lender can recommend) a HUD approved FHA 203k Consultant  to go to the property with the buyer to determine the required repairs and wish list repairs.

 The fee charged by the consultant can be included in the mortgage.  The fee can range anywhere between $ 400 to $1200 depending on the repairs required.  Please check with the consultant prior to scheduling your appointment.

*Buyer will obtain estimates from several licensed contractors for the work to be completed depending on how extensive the repairs.

Three estimates are recommended for each contractor but not necessary.  The buyer can act as their own general contractor only if experienced and licensed.  (FHA says experienced, but most investors require the buyer to be licensed)  The contractors must provide documentation to be approved by the lender prior to approval.

The consultant will determine the "required" repairs versus the "wish list repairs".  You must start with the required repairs and then move on from there for you wish list. This is an important step for the consultant and appraiser so that you don't over improve the home and exceed the comparable properties in the area.

* Once the consultant completes his report of required and wish list repairs, the lender will forward it to the appraiser for an "After Improved Value".  This is where you may run into problems with OVER improving the property based on current values.  Between the consultant, appraiser and buyer - the FINAL FINAL report will be tweeked to come up with a final report that the contractors will be hired to do.

* So now the file is submitted to underwriting and approved ( you need to qualify at the full amount you are borrowing of course, which may include your current mortgage payment for the home you will live in during the rehab period) and the normal steps for closing will occur.

(BIG PLUS - you can include 6 months of mortgage payments in the new loan amount since it's assumed that you will have TWO housing payments during the rehabiliation of the new home.  This money will be deducted each month during the reahab process) This is optional.

* Closing occurs, and the work begins within 30 days of closing/funding. (This is when your mortgage payments start since this is when you started borrowing the money - however, if you included the 6 mths mtg payments, they will be deducted from escrow starting when your first payment is due)

* Disbursments are made throughout the following 6 months from the escrow account (normally 4 draws with one final inspection, but  this can be increased for higher repair amounts) as the work is completed.

Remember you paid the seller for the price of the home, and then you borrowed an additional amount of X which is sitting in an escrow account to pay the contractors (your total loan is the total amount you borrowed)

Once the last disbursement is made and the final inspection showing COMPLETED AS PER THE CONTRACT........you are done! Simple ast 1 2 3  - okay maybe not, but that's why having an experienced lender on your side is crucial!

There are specific properties and repair requirements for this type of loan, so please call me for specific details if this sounds like the right loan for your new home.

Please send me your before and after pics!  I would love to see them and maybe even post them for people to see what can be done with this awesome program!  Or contact Colleen Craig FHA 203k Specialist for more details

See full size image

 Happy Rehabbing!








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