Tuesday, January 12, 2010

HUD Probes FHA Lenders

by Bill McBride on 1/12/2010 04:14:00 PM

From HUD: HUD Inspector General Probes Morgage Companies with Significant Claim Rates

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Inspector General Kenneth M. Donohue and Federal Housing Administration (FHA) Commissioner David H. Stevens announced today an initiative focusing on mortgage companies with significant claim rates against the Federal Housing Administration mortgage insurance program.

HUD Office of Inspector General (OIG) subpoenas were served to the corporate offices of 15 mortgage companies across the country demanding documents and data related to failed loans which resulted in claims paid out by the FHA mortgage insurance fund.

Inspector General Donohue said, “The goal of this initiative is to determine why there is such a high rate of defaults and claims with these companies and whether there is wrongdoing involved. We aren’t making any accusations at this time, we have no evidence of wrongdoing, but we will aggressively pursue indicators of fraud. We are members of the President's Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force and today’s activities reflect our commitment to seeking information on red flags that may arise from data analysis.
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“The FHA market share has skyrocketed,” Inspector General Donohue further said. “Our job is oversight. We work for the American taxpayer. Each loan on this list will be thoroughly examined and we will track down the reasons why it failed. Once we determine the causes, we will look to see whether there is a need for further review or remedial action. We want to send a message to the industry that as the mortgage landscape has shifted we are watching very carefully and that we are poised to take action against bad performers."
HUD has a great tool to track FHA lender performance: Neighborhood Watch Early Warning System

The default rates shown are for loans made during the last two years. As an example, according to the FHA, 15.97% of the loans originated by Pine State Mortgage Corporation of Atlanta, GA are in default or were claim terminated. The rate is 14.4% for Alacrity Financial Services, LLC of Southlake, TX, and 11.23% for Assurity Financial Services, LLC of Englewood, CO. All three have default rates well above the national average for loans originated during the last two years (5.05%), and all received subpoenas today.