Loan approvals more efficient under new rules

Rules announced in December by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) have sped up the process of reviewing and approving many of the federal agency’s loans, according to Apartment Finance Today.

The rules changed the criteria for having market-rate construction and rehabilitation loans reviewed by FHA regional and national loan committees, so that loans for less than $25 million and fewer than 250 units are now exempt from the national committee review process. Previously, any loan for more than 150 units or $15 million had to be reviewed before approval.

According to the source, these reviews were slowing loan approvals significantly before the new rules were implemented. Some other changes were also made. One executive told the source a deal saved at least four to six weeks because of the change, allowing construction to begin.

Rental managers and property investors may want to keep an eye on these loans, since this change means that competing properties or investment opportunities might be begun and completed more quickly. The changes were made in response to the FHA’s increased role in industry lending.