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By The Skanner News | The Skanner News
Published: 09 July 2024

Today, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, through its Federal Housing Administration (FHA), published a newly updated set of policies for its 203(k) Rehabilitation Mortgage Insurance Program. The changes will modernize the program and enhance its usefulness for individuals and families seeking affordable financing for renovating or rehabilitating a single-family home when purchasing or refinancing it.

The announcement was made this morning by Assistant Secretary for Housing and Federal Housing Commissioner Julia Gordon and Philadelphia Mayor Cherelle Parker at the home of a borrower who used the FHA 203(k) program to finance renovations to his home.

“HUD has programs not only to help families purchase a house, but to help them repair their homes,” said HUD Acting Secretary Adrianne Todman. “Today, we are modernizing and expanding this program, helping both homebuyers and homeowners fix up their homes. This is one more action HUD and the Biden-Harris Administration are taking to improve our country’s housing supply.”

The program allows borrowers to use FHA-insured financing to include the cost of rehabilitation or repair in a single mortgage used to purchase or refinance a home. The program covers structural repairs such as foundations and new roofs, modernization of kitchens and bathrooms and projects to increase energy efficiency and climate resilience. The program enhancements are expected to meaningfully increase usage of the program..

“The changes we are announcing today for the 203(k) program are long overdue and will support greater use of this program where it is needed most – in neighborhoods where homes are affordable but need repair,” said Federal Housing Commissioner Julia Gordon. “Increased use of 203(k) mortgages will help modernize and revitalize homes, which supports affordable housing supply and strengthens neighborhoods.”

FHA offers two variations of the 203(k) program: the Standard 203(k), which may be used for substantial remodeling and repairs, and the limited 203(k), which may be used for minor remodeling and nonstructural repairs. Today’s enhancements modify both programs, and include:

  • Increasing the allowable total rehabilitation costs a borrower can finance under the limited 203(k) program from $35,000 to $75,000 and reviewing this limit annually to ensure it continues to keep pace with market conditions;
  • Providing more time for rehabilitation and repair work to be completed by extending the rehabilitation period to 12 months for the standard 203(k) and nine months for the limited 203(k);
  • Allowing the financing of the 203(k) consultant fee in the total mortgage amount for the limited 203(k) if a borrower chooses to use a 203(k) consultant; and
  • Increasing the allowable fees that a 203(k) consultant can charge for various activities, which have not been updated since 1995. The new fee structure is designed to appropriately compensate consultants for their role and encourage more consultants to participate in the program.

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