Posts Tagged United States Department of Housing and Urban Development

Conference of Catholic Bishops and HUD at odds about discrimination practices

This post may be a little more political than most here, but this is an issue I believe strongly in: equal housing rights for all, and by “all” I mean everyone including matters regarding sexual orientation. We’ll save religious discrimination in housing for another post.

It seems though that the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops is peeved at the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) for Equal Access to Housing in HUD Programs—Regardless of Sexual Orientation or Gender Identity – 76 Fed. Reg. 4194, Docket No. FR 5359-P-01 (Jan. 24, 2011).

The Conference of Catholic Bishops feels as per their statement:

…making “sexual orientation” and “gender identity” a protected classification for purposes of federal housing programs has no support in any Act of Congress and appears at odds with at least one other, namely, the Defense of Marriage Act. Unlike discrimination based on age, disability, or other categories long recognized in federal law, Congress has never acted to prohibit discrimination generally, or housing discrimination in particular, because of sexual orientation or gender identity. Accordingly, there is no statutory basis for a rule forbidding such discrimination in HUD programs, and there is a statute that would be undermined by such a rule.

that they should be able to discriminate in their housing assistance programs BUT still receive taxpayer money through HUD to administer these programs.

I say if they want to discriminate that’s their business (though it’s not ethical by any means), but don’t use my tax money to do so because I don’t support their position. If the Catholic Church or any other religious organization wants to discriminate against any group of people than they should not receive public money do so.

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Just had a short sale? Want to buy a new home? You may be in luck.

So you’ve had to short sale your home. You’re worried the short sale will prevent you from buying a home again. Well, you may be in luck. Using an FHA insured loan you may be eligible to buy a home the very next day. Here is what HUD has to say about short sales and buying again:

…borrowers are considered eligible for a new FHA-insured mortgage if: 1) they were current on their previous mortgage and other debts at the time of the short sale and 2) if the proceeds from the short sale serve as payment in full.

We also stated that borrowers are not eligible for a new FHA mortgage if they pursued a short sale agreement to take advantage of declining market conditions, or to purchase another property at a reduced price.

Additionally, borrowers who execute a short sale while in default on their mortgage are not eligible for a FHA-insured mortgage for three years from the date of the sale.

Lenders, however, can make exceptions if the default was due to circumstances beyond the borrower’s control, such as the death of the primary wage earner.

So as long as you were current on your former mortgage and other debt, and not in foreclosure, than you are immediately eligible for an FHA insured loan.

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FHA to raise monthly mortgage insurance premiums… Again.

HUD has announced that it will once again raise the FHA monthly mortgage insurance premium. As you may recall it increased last Fall from 0.55% annually of the loan amount to 0.90% annually of the loan amount for loans equal to or greater than 95% loan-to-value. The minimum down payment for FHA loans is 3.5% leaving an LTV of 96.5, so most FHA loans originated fall into this 0.90% category.

For all loans originated on or after April 18, 2011 the new FHA mortgage insurance rate will be 1.15%.

FHA monthly mortgage insurance premiums are figured like this:

Loan balance X MI rate = Annual amount / 12 months = monthly MI payment.

So:

$200,000 loan balance X 0.90% = $1,800 annually / 12 months = $150.00 a month MI payment.

With the increase the equation will look like this:

$200,000 X 1.15% = $2,300 / 12 = $191.67 a month mortgage insurance payment.

What this will effectively do is reduce the amount of loan you will qualify for by about $10,000 or so.

So, if you’re looking at buying a new home or refinancing, be sure to get your loan approval done before April 18th and save yourself some money.

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