NOTICE: There are changes to the FHA Handbook (4000.1) regarding Must Do’s for appraisers

Here’s a short video from the National Real Estate Post (the ever-so entertaining Frank and Gary) concerning some changes to the FHA Handbook (4000.1). There are many things an FHA appraiser “must” do and it will be interesting to see how these “must do’s” will affect sellers, buyers and transactions.

I’ve been seeing an increased number of listings where listing agents have elected not to select FHA as a financing option for no reason other than they don’t like it. That action is a big limitation to buyers. What it means is when I’m representing a buyer I have to call listing agents for properties within FHA loan limits where FHA isn’t selection as a financing option and ask them if the property has a condition that will negate FHA financing. I research hundreds of properties a month and these phone calls are time consuming, but I make the calls so my buying clients have as many options as possible.

Here is the link to the FHA Handbook (4000.1) for your reading enjoyment.

Attention Home Buyers Purchasing After August 1 2015

Federal law has required all lenders to provide two disclosure forms to consumers when they apply for a mortgage (Good Faith Estimate and early Truth In Lending Act form) and two forms before they close on a home loan (HUD-1 Settlement Statement and final TILA).

In an effort to create greater levels of transparency and make understanding the numbers much less confusing for consumers purchasing or refinancing a home, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) was established.

Residential loans originated after August 1 2015 will be subject to what is known as The Rule. The Rule replaces the Good Faith Estimate and early Truth In Lending Act form with a document called a Loan Estimate and replaces the final TILA form with a document called a Closing Disclosure.

Along with these new forms are new regulations which require timetables for delivering information to consumers. These regulations will have an impact on when closings can occur.

Being a new system, lenders and escrow companies will be making changes and it will take some time to work out the kinks and get to smooth sailing. There is something buyers planning to purchase after August 1 2015 can do: THINK LOCAL. By getting your home loan from a local bank and using a local escrow company you’ll be able to avoid mishaps of this federal program that are ripe to occur when dealing with out-of-state entities that have different real estate practices than the State of Washington.

To help you search for a local bank, you can use this link from the Washington State Department of Financial Institutions site where you an find a list of  Washington State Chartered Banks.

To learn more here’s the link to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

Sharing: 1031 Exchange Manual

1031s fell out of fashion about eight years ago after the economic downturn but as the housing market is getting its breath back 1031s have an environment to blossom once again.

While my referral preferences for a Qualified Intermediary is either Starker Services Inc. or the law firm of McFerran, Burns & Stovall, it’s wise to be aware of information from a variety of  sources. What I’m sharing here is an extensive post called 1031 Exchange Manual  posted by 1031 Corporation which I recently re-read. Much of this is heady, the nuances of which are best discussed with a Qualified Intermediary of your choice but this information will open your mind about the many workings of the 1031 exchange.

My eyes and ears remain open for conversations about the 1031 Tax Deferred Exchange and I will continue to share.

Architecture – A look into the shotgun house and African American History

The shotgun house design is considered one of the most direct contributions of African culture to American architecture. Josh and Chuck, the host of How Stuff Works, tie this to the last 150 years in African-American culture. Did you know that the shotgun house was responsible for the introduction of porches to the American home? It was affordable, and it has repeatedly saved communities over and over again. The houses are not named after guns. Josh and Chuck explain the name most likely comes from the term “shogun” or “God’s house” in the original Yoruba language, owing tradition to Haitian immigrants to New Orleans. Like most faded details in America’s history, the home’s traditions are worth hearing and remembering.

Listen to the podcast here.