Tuesday, April 17, 2012

New Short Sale timelines and HARP Updates

by Bill McBride on 4/17/2012 07:58:00 PM

This might speed up the short sale approval process, from Freddie Mac: Communication Time Lines for Short Sales

The new requirements introduce specific response time frames for certain activities in the short sale process ... Effective for new evaluations conducted on or after June 15, 2012, Servicers must comply with the following minimum communication time frames for all short sales. If feasible, Servicers are encouraged to implement these changes prior to the effective date of June 15, 2012.
Here is a key section:
Within five days of an evaluation decision, but no later than 30 days following receipt of a complete BRP [Borrower Response Package], the Servicer must provide to the Borrower an evaluation decision and send the appropriate Borrower Evaluation Notice in accordance with Section 64.6(d)(5).
...
There may be some situations in which a Servicer will be unable to provide a decision within 30 days following receipt of a complete BRP (e.g., extended negotiations with the MI). In such cases, the Servicer must notify the Borrower within the 30 day time limit that the BRP is still under review and each week thereafter provide the Borrower a status update indicating the reason(s) why a decision is pending. The weekly status updates may be communicated verbally or in writing. However, the Servicer must provide the Borrower with a decision and send the appropriate Borrower Evaluation Notice no later than 60 days after receipt of a complete BRP.
Fannie Mae is also implementing new timelines.

And on HARP from Mary Ellen Podmolik at the Chicago Tribune: Freddie Mac to ease refinancing program's guidelines for borrowers
Freddie Mac early this week will ease its mortgage underwriting formulas to boost the number of homeowners who qualify for the government's home loan refinancing program.
...
In response to complaints from lenders, Freddie Mac this week will undertake a "fine-tuning" of its underwriting process, according to Freddie Mac spokesman Brad German. Specifics of how the automated underwriting models will be altered aren't being disclosed, even to lenders, but some homeowners who have been turned down for the program may now qualify, he said.

"It will be a noticeable, positive change for the homeowner," German said. "It will help increase the number of borrowers who can refinance under HARP and take advantage of today's rates."
Mortgage broker Soylent Green is People writes: "So many HARP eligible loans diagnosed as EA-I to EA-3 (EA = Expanded Approval, code for “unacceptable risk” to many lenders) the Agencies are feeling the heat from borrowers turned away and changing how their AU systems score loans."

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