Transform a Handyman Special into a Hot Property with a 203(k)
However, securing the funds to make much-needed renovations isn’t always easy. A traditional home equity loan is the most common option for rehabilitation projects, but it isn’t a viable alternative for many new homebuyers and existing homeowners.
Fortunately, the Section 203(k) insurance program can help fill this gap.
Section 203(k) mortgage insurance is a federal program administered by the Fair Housing Administration (FHA), which is part of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD). As an insurance program, it offers protection to lenders to encourage them to make loans in areas in need of renovation and revitalization. For borrowers, it opens the door to funds that can be used to buy or refinance a home, plus cover the cost of rehabilitation, with a single mortgage. It may also be used by current homeowners to finance renovations on their existing homes.
As a federally sponsored plan, the 203(k) program includes a number of eligibility requirements. The following offers some general guidelines regarding program qualifications. However, we recommend speaking to a qualified loan professional for more in-depth advice regarding your particular situation.
The 203(k) program is open to any borrower able to make his or her monthly mortgage payment. The funds may be used to cover projects ranging from minor improvements (with a minimum cost of $5,000) up to complete renovations and rebuilds, as long as the original foundation remains in place. Funds may also be used for residential properties with non-residential uses and to convert existing properties of any size into one- to four-unit structures.
How Section 203(k) Financing May Be Used
Funds secured under the 203(k) loan insurance program may be used in a number of ways, including:
The Application Process
While loans made under the 203(k) program are insured by the federal government, the actual funds are approved and disbursed by an FHA-approved lender. Therefore, the application process is similar to other types of mortgages where the appropriate paperwork is submitted to a lending institution, which then makes a decision whether or not to approve the loan request.
When it comes to applying for a 203(k) loan, not all lenders are created equal. Therefore, it is important that you work with an experienced and qualified lending professional to ensure your eligibility for this program.
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