In a recent Blog Post, I discussed HUD/FHA’s plans to begin issuing eFindings Letters on April 27, 2015 in lieu of hard copy letters sent via the US Postal Service on all Post-Endorsement Technical Review cases rated “Unacceptable”.
In this regard, HUD Headquarters staff conducted a Webinar on Tuesday, April 21, 2015 to discuss this new process as well as the reports that will be generated to monitor and track these Findings Letters.
Although this initiative is certainly a small step in the right direction and helps address a concern voiced by many mortgage lenders in the past that they failed to receive the hard copy Findings Letters, there are a number of enhancements that should be considered by HUD as this new process is implemented. Some examples are as follows:
- Each lender will be required to designate ONE primary Administrative Contact in FHA Connection & this contact’s E: Mail address will receive all eFindings Letter correspondence. FHA should give some consideration to allowing a lender to designate a backup Administrative Contact that could also be given access to these eFindings Letters in situations where the primary contact will be on extended leave.
- This new process of sending out eFindings Letters to lenders will only be applicable for cases receiving Post-Endorsement Technical Reviews from the HOCs’ Processing & Underwriting Division. Other Findings Letters (or Indemnification Agreement Requests) that are sent out by HUD’s Quality Assurance Division staff will continue to be sent out via the US Postal Service and not via this new process. Why not adopt this process for all correspondence?
- The new reports that will be generated to monitor & track the Unacceptable Findings Letters will only be accessible to the originating lender. Servicing lenders or investors will not have access to these reports. If Servicers can access Neighborhood Watch data – why not this data?
- Letters will not be sent out by the HOCs providing feedback to lenders on the results of their reviews of the lender’ responses to the eFindings Letters. Instead, lenders will be instructed to run reports in the weeks subsequent to the submission of a response to determine if the HOC has closed out a case. Why can’t Form Letters be generated by HUD to provide feedback to lenders in real-time when their “Findings” are satisfied?
- Findings Letters sent out by FHA prior to April 27, 2015 will not be reflected in the new Unacceptable Findings Letter tracking reports. HUD should look into this matter to see if there is a way to capture and share this pipeline information with lenders in a standardized report.
On a positive note – as I have previously stated lenders will now be able to obtain status reports on each of the Findings Letters that will be sent to them beginning on April 27, 2015. This will greatly help to streamline and expedite their on-going communications with HUD staff. As the Chicago song “Beginnings” goes – It’s only the beginning. Only just the start!