Sunday, June 13, 2010

HAFA changes as of April 5, 2010 & How they affect you

HAFA (Home Affordable Foreclosure Alternatives) changes went into effect on April 5, 2010. What's HAFA you may ask? It's an "alternative" program created to help homeowners who may not have qualified for a loan modification under HAMP (Home Affordable Modification Program).

Here's a quick synopsis of standard loan products offered to consumers. As noted on the page to the link for "loan products," Fannie Mae began offering refinance options per the "Making Homes Affordable" program. The goal of this program as announced by President Obama is "to provide access to low-cost refinancing to responsible homeowners suffering from falling home prices." The expectation was that these changes would relieve people of the strain of an interest-only loan or short term ARM, reduce their Principal and Interest payment and place them in a more stable loan product. In short, DON'T do any 5/1 or 7/1 Adjustment Rate Mortgages and avoid interest-only loans altogether. Lenders may not like this advice. Thats OK. By virtue of my nature I simply don't believe in "predatory" practices. "Predatory" practices put my needs 1st and my client's needs last. NO GOOD.

Here's a quick summary of HAFA & Changes from Fannie Mae as of June 1, 2010:
  • On June 1, 2010 Fannie Mae released their servicing guide announcement SVC20-10-07: Introduction of Fannie Mae's HAFA program. This guide provides servicer guidance and direction for using the short sale or deed-in-lieu (DIL) process for borrowers who qualified for, but did not complete a loan modification with HAMP. In essence it covers servicers incentives, standard forms to use, and timeframes for completion.

HAFA programs features:

  • Uses verified borrower financial & hardship info collected in conjunction with HAMP eliminating the need for additional eligibility analysis.
  • Allows borrower to receive pre-approved short sale terms prior to the property listing.
  • Prohibits servicer from requiring as a condition of approving the short sale, a reduction in the agreed upon Realtor commission in the listing agreement. Good stuff. 8-)
  • Releases the successful HAFA borrower from future liability for the debt. (no deficiency judgments...whoo hoo!!!!)
  • Uses standard processes, documents & timeframes. (Yes,saves time & expedites the process).
  • Provides financial incentives to borrowers, servicers and subordinate lienholders.

Servicer incentives: $2,200 for short sale. $1,500 for deed-in-lieu (DIL)

Borrower incentives: Short sale of DIL- $3,000 to assist with relocation expenses.

**Pls note, in most cases the borrower will receive funds at closing of the short sale, or within 5 days after the servicer accepts DIL, as long as the home is vacated and in acceptable condition.**

I hope this post answered a few lingering questions you may have had. Don't hesitate to e-mail or call me with additional questions/concerns. While I'm not a Tax Professional, Attorney, or Lender I'll do my best to help with Real Estate related inquiries related to buying & selling homes; thats my specialty. Thanks again for reading my blog & HAPPY HOUSE HUNTING. As always, I'm never too busy for you or your referrals.

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