Meet Sara Fizur, BWE's FHA Closing Manager
Sara started at BWE in January and is based in Portland, Maine. She has closed FHA loans for 13 years and started off working on the HUD side of transactions. Her experience includes LEAN, MAP and RAD transactions. For the last three plus years, Sara was an FHA Senior Closer at KeyBank, spending the last two years as the only FHA Closer at Key. We asked Sara for her thoughts about the closing process.
What should our borrowers do to get to closing faster on an FHA transaction?
Starting the closing process early enough so a correct and complete package can go into HUD is key. Below are links to the various HUD closing checklists. These will help compile a correct and complete package.
HUD Refinance Closing Checklist for 223(f) and Section 223(a)(7) Programs (This link will automatically download the Checklist Word document)
HUD is not the only responsible party in a closing. The borrower and the lender both need to be on it too. Quickly addressing HUD’s questions and requests for more information goes a long way to an expedited closing. Also, make sure to have a title agent who knows the HUD requirements well. A title that doesn’t match up to the survey exactly can be time-consuming.
What are some of the pitfalls you have seen borrowers make in the past?
Pitfalls include waiting to the last minute to start the closing process and not addressing pivotal issues. On the latter one, it is important to tackle those issues head-on and not wait for them to arise later. Sometimes repair work drags on and that too delays a closing, or we discover insurance is not compliant late in the process. A few insurance types can take weeks to obtain coverage, which can delay closing. Requesting an insurance waiver from HUD is also a lengthy process, requiring significant backup (three quotes from different insurance providers, loss run history, and financial justification). Finally, review the closing packet before submitting it. Having a second set of eyes go over the packet really does help catch issues before HUD catches them.
Any last words of wisdom?
Don’t wait to get started, get organized, take advantage of your Lender’s experience and be prepared!