FHA 203(K) Rehab Loans

Renovation loans such as the FHA 203k program are used to make improvements to an existing property. They can be used to make simple up-grades to a home, such as a kitchen or bath improvement, or to completely re-construct a home that is presently un-livable. They can also be used to tear down an existing structure and re-build a new one using some portion of the existing foundation, or to move a building you purchase or own onto land that you purchase or own.

The 203(k) loan includes the following steps:

  • A potential homebuyer locates a fixer-upper and executes a sales contract after doing a feasibility analysis of the property with their real estate professional. The contract should state that the buyer is seeking a 203(k) loan and that the contract is contingent on loan approval based on additional required repairs by the FHA or the lender.
  • The homebuyer then selects an FHA-approved 203(k) lender and arranges for a detailed proposal showing the scope of work to be done, including a detailed cost estimate on each repair or improvement of the project.
  • The appraisal is performed to determine the value of the property after renovation.
  • If the borrower passes the lenders credit-worthiness test, the loan closes for an amount that will cover the purchase or refinance cost of the property, the remodeling costs and the allowable closing costs. The amount of the loan will also include a contingency reserve of 10% to 20% of the total remodeling costs and is used to cover any extra work not included in the original proposal.
  • At closing, the seller of the property is paid off and the remaining funds are put in an escrow account to pay for the repairs and improvements during the rehabilitation period.
  • The mortgage payments and remodeling begin after the loan closes. The borrower can decide to have up to six mortgage payments (PITI) put into the cost of rehabilitation if the property is not going to be occupied during construction, but it cannot exceed the length of time it is estimated to complete the rehab.
  • Escrowed funds are released to the contractor during construction through a series of draw requests for completed work. To ensure completion of the job, 10% of each draw is held back; this money is paid after the lender determines their will be no liens on the property.