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e-CFR data is current as of July 7, 2020

Title 24Subtitle BChapter IISubchapter BPart 203 → Subpart C


Title 24: Housing and Urban Development
PART 203—SINGLE FAMILY MORTGAGE INSURANCE


Subpart C—Servicing Responsibilities


Contents

General Requirements

§203.500   Mortgage servicing generally.
§203.501   Loss mitigation.
§203.502   Responsibility for servicing.
§203.508   Providing information.
§203.510   Release of personal liability.
§203.512   Free assumability; exceptions.

Payments, Charges and Accounts

§203.550   Escrow accounts.
§203.552   Fees and charges after endorsement.
§203.554   Enforcement of late charges.
§203.556   Return of partial payments.
§203.558   Handling prepayments.

Mortgagee Action and Forbearance

§203.600   Mortgage collection action.
§203.602   Delinquency notice to mortgagor.
§203.604   Contact with the mortgagor.
§203.605   Loss mitigation performance.
§203.606   Pre-foreclosure review.
§203.608   Reinstatement.
§203.610   Relief for mortgagor in military service.
§203.614   Special forbearance.
§203.616   Mortgage modification.

Mortgages in Default on Property Located on Indian Reservations

§203.664   Processing defaulted mortgages on property located on Indian land.

Mortgages in Default on Property Located on Hawaiian Home Lands

§203.665   Processing defaulted mortgages on property located on Hawaiian home lands.

Assignment and Forbearance—Property in Allegany Reservation of Seneca Indians

§203.666   Processing defaulted mortgages on property in Allegany Reservation of Seneca Nation of Indians.

Occupied Conveyance

§203.670   Conveyance of occupied property.
§203.671   Criteria for determining the Secretary's interest.
§203.672   Residential areas.
§203.673   Habitability.
§203.674   Eligibility for continued occupancy.
§203.675   Notice to occupants of pending acquisition.
§203.676   Request for continued occupancy.
§203.677   Decision to approve or deny a request.
§203.678   Conveyance of vacant property.
§203.679   Continued occupancy after conveyance.
§203.680   Approval of occupancy after conveyance.
§203.681   Authority of HUD Field Office Managers.

Source: 41 FR 49736, Nov. 10, 1976, unless otherwise noted.

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General Requirements

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§203.500   Mortgage servicing generally.

This subpart identifies servicing practices of lending institutions that HUD considers acceptable for mortgages insured by HUD. Failure to comply with this subpart shall not be a basis for denial of insurance benefits, but failure to comply will be cause for imposition of a civil money penalty, including a penalty under §30.35(c)(2), or withdrawal of HUD's approval of a mortgagee. It is the intent of the Department that no mortgagee shall commence foreclosure or acquire title to a property until the requirements of this subpart have been followed.

[70 FR 21578, Apr. 26, 2005]

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§203.501   Loss mitigation.

Mortgagees must consider the comparative effects of their elective servicing actions, and must take those appropriate actions which can reasonably be expected to generate the smallest financial loss to the Department. Such actions include, but are not limited to, deeds in lieu of foreclosure under §203.357, pre-foreclosure sales under §203.370, partial claims under §203.414, assumptions under §203.512, special forbearance under §§203.471 and 203.614, and recasting of mortgages under §203.616. HUD may prescribe conditions and requirements for the appropriate use of these loss mitigation actions, concerning such matters as owner-occupancy, extent of previous defaults, prior use of loss mitigation, and evaluation of the mortgagor's income, credit and property.

[59 FR 50145, Sept. 30, 1994, as amended at 61 FR 35019, July 3, 1996]

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§203.502   Responsibility for servicing.

(a) After January 10, 1994, servicing of insured mortgages must be performed by a mortgagee that is approved by HUD to service insured mortgages. The servicer must fully discharge the servicing responsibilities of the mortgagee as outlined in this part. The mortgagee shall remain fully responsible to the Secretary for proper servicing, and the actions of its servicer shall be considered to be the actions of the mortgagee. The servicer also shall be fully responsible to the Secretary for its actions as a servicer.

(b) Whenever servicing of any mortgage is transferred from one mortgagee or servicer to another, notice of the transfer of service shall be delivered:

(1) By the transferor mortgagee or servicer to the mortgagor. The notification shall be delivered not less than 15 days before the effective date of the transfer and shall contain the information required in §3500.21(e)(2) of this title; and

(2) By the transferee mortgagee or servicer:

(i) To the mortgagor. The notification shall be delivered not less than 15 days before the effective date of the transfer and shall contain the information required in §3500.21(e)(2) of this title; and

(ii) To the Secretary. This notification shall be delivered within 15 days of the transfer, in a format prescribed by the Secretary.

[36 FR 24508, Dec. 22, 1971, as amended at 57 FR 47974, Oct. 20, 1992; 57 FR 58349, Dec. 9, 1992; 59 FR 65448, Dec. 19, 1994; 61 FR 36266, July 9, 1996]

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§203.508   Providing information.

(a) Mortgagees shall provide loan information to mortgagors and arrange for individual loan consultation on request. The mortgagee must establish written procedures and controls to assure prompt responses to inquiries. One or more of the following means of making information readily available to mortgagors is required:

(1) An office staffed with competent personnel located within 200 miles of the property, capable of providing timely responses to requests for information. Complete records need not be maintained in such an office if the staff is able to secure needed information and pass it on to the mortgagor.

(2) Toll-free telephone service at an office capable of providing needed information.

(b) All mortgagors must be informed of the system available for obtaining answers to loan inquiries, the office from which needed information may be obtained and reminded of the system at least annually. Toll-free telephone service need not be provided to a mortgagor other than at the office designated to serve the mortgagor nor other than from the immediate vicinity of the security property.

(c) Within thirty days after the end of each calendar year, the mortgagee shall furnish to the mortgagor a statement of the interest paid, and of the taxes disbursed from the escrow account during the preceding year. At the mortgagor's request, the mortgagee shall furnish a statement of the escrow account sufficient to enable the mortgagor to reconcile the account.

(d) Mortgagees must respond to HUD requests for information concerning individual accounts.

(e) Each servicer of a mortgage shall deliver to the mortgagor a written notice of any assignment, sale, or transfer of the servicing of the mortgage. The notice must be sent in accordance with the provisions of §3500.21(e)(1) of this title and shall contain the information required by §3500.21(e)(2) of this title. Servicers must respond to mortgagor inquiries pertaining to the transfer of servicing in accordance with §3500.21(f) of this title.

(The information collection requirements contained in paragraph (c) were approved by the Office of Management and Budget under control number 2502-0235)

[41 FR 49736, Nov. 10, 1976, as amended at 48 FR 28986, June 24, 1983; 59 FR 65448, Dec. 19, 1994]

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§203.510   Release of personal liability.

(a) Procedures. The mortgagee shall release a selling mortgagor from any personal liability for payment of the mortgage debt, if release is permitted by §203.258 of this part, in accordance with the following procedures:

(1) The mortgagee receives a request for a creditworthiness determination for a prospective purchaser of all or part of the mortgaged property;

(2) The mortgagee or servicer performs a creditworthiness determination under §203.512(b)(1) of this part if the mortgagee or servicer is approved for participation in the Direct Endorsement program, or the mortgagee requests a creditworthiness determination by the Secretary;

(3) The prospective purchaser is determined to be creditworthy under the standards applicable when a release of the selling mortgagor is intended;

(4) The prospective purchaser assumes personal liability by agreeing to pay the mortgage debt; and

(5) The mortgagee provides the selling mortgagor with a release of personal liability on a form approved by the Secretary.

(b) Release after 5 years. (1) If a selling mortgagor is not released under the procedures described in paragraph (a) of this section, either because no request for a creditworthiness determination is submitted under paragraph (a)(1) of this section, or because there is no affirmative determination of creditworthiness under paragraph (a)(3) of this section, then the selling mortgagor is automatically released from any personal liability for payment of the mortgage debt because of section 203(r) of the National Housing Act if:

(i) The purchasing mortgagor has assumed personal liability by agreeing to pay the mortgage debt;

(ii) Five years have elapsed after the assumption; and

(iii) The purchasing mortgagor is not in default under the mortgage at the end of the five-year period.

(2) If the conditions of this paragraph (b) for a release are satisfied, the mortgagee shall provide a written release upon request to the selling mortgagor.

(3) This paragraph (b) only applies to a mortgage originated pursuant to an application by the mortgagor on or after December 1, 1986 on a form approved by the Secretary.

(c) Mortgagee to provide notice. A mortgagee shall inform mortgagors (including prospective mortgagors seeking information) about the procedures for release of personal liability by providing a notice approved by the Secretary when required by the Secretary.

[58 FR 42649, Aug. 11, 1993]

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§203.512   Free assumability; exceptions.

(a) Policy of free assumability with no restrictions. A mortgagee shall not impose, agree to or enforce legal restrictions on conveyance, as defined in §203.41(a)(3) of this part, or restrictions on assumption of the insured mortgage, unless specifically permitted by this part or contained in a junior lien granted to the mortgagee after settlement on the insured mortgage.

(b) Credit review. If approval is required by the mortgage, the mortgagee shall not approve the sale or other transfer of all or part of the mortgaged property, or the sale or transfer of a beneficial interest in a trust owning all or part of the property, whether or not any person acquires personal liability under the mortgage in connection with the sale or other transfer, unless:

(1) At least one of the persons acquiring ownership is determined to be creditworthy under applicable standards prescribed by the Secretary;

(2) The selling mortgagor retains an ownership interest in the property; or

(3) The transfer is by devise or descent.

(c) Investors and secondary residences. The mortgagee shall not approve the sale of other transfer or mortgaged property to a person who cannot be approved as a substitute mortgagor as provided in §203.258 of this part because the property will not be a primary residence or a secondary residence permitted by that section.

(d) Due-on-sale clause. Each mortgage shall contain a due-on-sale clause permitting acceleration, in a form prescribed by the Secretary. If a sale or other transfer occurs without mortgagee approval and a prohibition in paragraphs (b) or (c) of this section applies, a mortgagee shall enforce this section by requesting approval from the Secretary to accelerate the mortgage, provided that acceleration is permitted by applicable law. The mortgagee shall accelerate if approval is granted. This paragraph applies only if the application by the mortgagor on a form approved by the Secretary is dated on or after December 1, 1986.

[58 FR 42649, Aug. 11, 1993; 59 FR 15112, Mar. 31, 1994]

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Payments, Charges and Accounts

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§203.550   Escrow accounts.

(a) It is the mortgagee's responsibility to make escrow disbursements before bills become delinquent. Mortgagees must establish controls to insure that bills payable from the escrow fund or the information needed to pay such bills is obtained on a timely basis. Penalties for late payments for items payable from the escrow account must not be charged to the mortgagor unless it can be shown that the penalty was the direct result of the mortgagor's error or omission. The mortgagee shall use the procedures set forth in §3500.17 of this title, implementing Section 10 of the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (12 U.S.C. 2609), to compute the amount of the escrow, the methods of collection and accounting, and the payment of the bills for which the money has been escrowed.

(b) [Reserved]

(c) In the case of escrow accounts created for purposes of §203.52 or §234.64 of this chapter, mortgagees may estimate escrow requirements based on the best information available as to probable payments that will be required to be made from the account on a periodic basis throughout the period during which the account is maintained.

(d) The mortgagee shall not institute foreclosure when the only default of the mortgagor occupant is a present inability to pay a substantial escrow shortage, resulting from an adjustment pursuant to this section, in a lump sum.

(e) When the contract of mortgage insurance is terminated voluntarily or because of prepayment in full, sums in the escrow account to pay the mortgage insurance premiums shall be remitted to HUD with a form approved by the Secretary for reporting the voluntary termination of prepayment. Upon prepayment in full sums held in escrow for taxes and hazard insurance shall be released to the mortgagor promptly.

(Approved by the Office of Management and Budget under control number 2502-0474)

[41 FR 49736, Nov. 10, 1976, as amended at 57 FR 9611, Mar. 19, 1992; 57 FR 27927, June 23, 1992; 59 FR 53901, Oct. 26, 1994; 60 FR 8812, Feb. 15, 1995]

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§203.552   Fees and charges after endorsement.

(a) The mortgagee may collect reasonable and customary fees and charges from the mortgagor after insurance endorsement only as provided below. The mortgagee may collect these fees or charges from the mortgagor only to the extent that the mortgagee is not reimbursed for such fees by HUD.

(1) Late charges as set forth in §203.25;

(2) Charges for processing or reprocessing a check returned as uncollectible; (Where bank policy permits, the mortgagee must deposit a check for collection a second time before assessing a bad check charge);

(3) Fees for processing a change of ownership of the mortgaged property;

(4) Fees and charges for arranging a substitution of liability under the mortgage in connection with the sale or transfer of the property;

(5) Charges for processing a request for credit approval of an assumptor or substitute mortgagor;

(6) Charges for substitution of a hazard insurance policy at other than the expiration of term of the existing hazard insurance policy;

(7) Charges for modification of the mortgage involving a recorded agreement for extension of term or reamortization;

(8) Fees and charges for processing a partial release of the mortgaged property;

(9) Attorney's and trustee's fees and expenses actually incurred (including the cost of appraisals pursuant to §203.368(e) and cost of advertising pursuant to §203.368(h)) when a case has been referred for foreclosure in accordance with the provisions of this part after a firm decision to foreclose if foreclosure is not completed because of a reinstatement of the account. (No attorney's fee may be charged for the services of the mortgagee's or servicer's staff attorney or for the services of a collection attorney other than the attorney handling the foreclosure.)

(10) The service charge provided for by §203.23(c) and escrow charges in accordance with §203.23(a);

(11) A trustee's fee if the security instrument in deed-of-trust states provides for payment of such a fee for execution of a satisfactory, release, or trustee's deed when the deed of trust is paid in full; and

(12) Such other reasonable and customary charges as may be authorized by the Secretary. (This shall not include:

(i) Charges for servicing activities of the mortgagee or servicer;

(ii) Fees charged by independent tax servicer organizations which contract to furnish data and information necessary for the payment of property taxes,

(iii) Satisfaction, termination, or reconveyance fees when a mortgage is paid in full (other than as provided in paragraph (a)(11) of this section), or

(iv) The fee for recordation of a satisfaction of the mortgage in states where recordation is the responsibility of the mortgagee.)

(13) Where permitted by the security instrument, attorney's fees and expenses actually incurred in the defense of any suit or legal proceeding wherein the mortgagee shall be made a party thereto by reason of the mortgage; (No attorney's fee may be charged for the services of the mortgagee's or servicer's staff attorney.)

(14) Property preservation expenses incurred pursuant to §203.377.

(b) reasonable and customary fees must be predicated upon the actual cost of the work performed including out-of-pocket expenses. Directors of HUD Area and Insuring Offices are authorized to establish maximum fees and charges which are reasonable and customary in their areas. Except as provided in this part, no fee or charge shall be based on a percentage of either the face amount of the mortgage or the unpaid principal balance due on the mortgage.

[41 FR 49736, Nov. 10, 1976, as amended at 52 FR 1330, Jan. 13, 1987; 61 FR 35019, July 3, 1996; 62 FR 60130, Nov. 6, 1997]

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§203.554   Enforcement of late charges.

(a) A mortgagee shall not commence foreclosure when the only default on the part of the mortgagor is the failure to pay a late charge or charges (§203.25), except as provided in §203.556.

(b) A late charge attributable to a particular installment payment due under the mortgage shall not be deducted from that installment. However, if the mortgagee thereafter notifies the mortgagor of his obligation to pay a late charge, such a charge may be deducted from any subsequent payment or payments submitted by the mortgagor or on his behalf if this is not inconsistent with the terms of the mortgage. Partial payments shall be treated as provided in §203.556.

(c) A payment may be returned because of failure to include a late charge only if the mortgagee notifies the mortgagor before imposition of the charge of the amount of the monthly payment, the date when the late charge will be imposed and either the amount of the late charge or the total amount due when the late charge is included.

(d) During the 60-day period beginning on the effective date of transfer of the servicing of a mortgage, a late charge shall not be imposed on the mortgagor with respect to any payment on the loan. No payment shall be treated as late for any other purpose if the payment is received by the transferor servicer, rather than the transferee servicer that should receive the payment, before the due date (including any applicable grace period allowed under the mortgage documents) applicable to such payment.

[42 FR 15680, Mar. 23, 1977, as amended at 59 FR 65448, Dec. 19, 1994]

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§203.556   Return of partial payments.

(a) For the purpose of this section, a partial payment is a payment of any amount less than the full amount due under the terms of the mortgage at the time the payment is tendered, including late charges.

(b) Except as provided in this section, the mortgagee shall accept any partial payment and either apply it to the mortgagor's account or identify it with the mortgagor's account and hold it in a trust account pending disposition. When partial payments held for disposition aggregate a full monthly installment they shall be applied to the mortgagor's account, thus advancing the date of the oldest unpaid installment but not the date on which the account first became delinquent.

(c) If the mortgage is not in default, a partial payment may be returned to the mortgagor with a letter of explanation.

(d) If the mortgage is in default, a partial payment may be returned to the mortgagor with a letter of explanation in any of the following circumstances:

(1) When payment aggregates less than 50 percent of the amount then due;

(2) The payment is less than the amount agreed to in a forbearance plan, whether or not reduced to writing;

(3) The property is occupied by a tenant who is paying rent and the rentals are not being applied to the mortgage payments;

(4) Foreclosure has been commenced. (Foreclosure is commenced when the first action required for foreclosure under applicable law is taken.)

(e) Under the following circumstances the mortgagee may return any partial payment received more than 14 days after the mortgagee has mailed to the mortgagor a statement of the full amount due, including late charges, and a notice of intention to return any payment less than such amount.

(1) Four or more monthly installments are due and unpaid, or

(2) A delinquency of any amount has continued for at least six months since the account first became delinquent.

[42 FR 15680, Mar. 23, 1977]

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§203.558   Handling prepayments.

(a) Handling prepayments for FHA-insured mortgages closed on or after January 21, 2015. With respect to FHA-insured mortgages closed on or after January 21, 2015, notwithstanding the terms of the mortgage, the mortgagee shall accept a prepayment at any time and in any amount. The mortgagee shall not require 30 days' advance notice of prepayment, even if the mortgage instrument purports to require such notice. Monthly interest on the debt must be calculated on the actual unpaid principal balance of the loan as of the date the prepayment is received, and not as of the next installment due date.

(b) Handling prepayments for FHA-insured mortgages closed before January 21, 2015. (1) With respect to FHA mortgages insured before August 2, 1985, if a prepayment is offered on other than an installment due date, the mortgagee may refuse to accept the prepayment until the first day of the month following expiration of the 30-day notice period as provided in the mortgage, or may require payment of interest to that date, but only if the mortgagee so advises the mortgagor, in a form approved by the Commissioner, in response to the mortgagor's inquiry, request for payoff figures, or tender of prepayment. If the installment due date (the first day of the month) falls on a nonbusiness day, the mortgagor's notice of intention to prepay or the prepayment shall be timely if received on the next business day.

(2) With respect to FHA mortgages insured on or after August 2, 1985, but closed before January 21, 2015, the mortgagee shall not require 30 days' advance notice of prepayment, even if the mortgage instrument purports to require such notice. If the prepayment is offered on other than an installment due date, the mortgagee may refuse to accept the prepayment until the next installment due date (the first day of the month), or may require payment of interest to that date, but only if the mortgagee so advises the mortgagor, in a form approved by the Commissioner, in response to the mortgagor's inquiry, request for payoff figures, or tender of prepayment.

(3) If the mortgagee fails to meet the full disclosure requirements of paragraphs (b)(1) and (b)(2) of this section, the mortgagee may be subject to forfeiture of that portion of the interest collected for the period beyond the date that prepayment in full was received and to such other actions as are provided in part 25 of this title.

(c) Mortgagee annual notice to mortgagors. Each mortgagee, with respect to a mortgage under this part, shall provide to each of its mortgagors not less frequently than annually a written notice, in a form approved by the Commissioner, containing a statement of the amount outstanding for prepayment of the principal amount of the mortgage. With respect to FHA-insured mortgages closed before January 21, 2015, the notice shall describe any requirements the mortgagor must fulfill to prevent the accrual of any interest on the principal amount after the date of any prepayment. This paragraph shall apply to any outstanding mortgage insured on or after August 22, 1991.

[79 FR 50837, Aug. 26, 2014]

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Mortgagee Action and Forbearance

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§203.600   Mortgage collection action.

Subject to the requirements of this subpart, mortgagees shall take prompt action to collect amounts due from mortgagors to minimize the number of accounts in a delinquent or default status. Collection techniques must be adapted to individual differences in mortgagors and take account of the circumstances peculiar to each mortgagor.

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§203.602   Delinquency notice to mortgagor.

The mortgagee shall give notice to each mortgagor in default on a form supplied by the Secretary or, if the mortgagee wishes to use its own form, on a form approved by the Secretary, no later than the end of the second month of any delinquency in payments under the mortgage. If an account is reinstated and again becomes delinquent, the delinquency notice shall be sent to the mortgagor again, except that the mortgagee is not required to send a second delinquency notice to the same mortgagor more often than once each six months. The mortgagee may issue additional or more frequent notices of delinquency at its option.

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§203.604   Contact with the mortgagor.

(a) [Reserved]

(b) The mortgagee must have a face-to-face interview with the mortgagor, or make a reasonable effort to arrange such a meeting, before three full monthly installments due on the mortgage are unpaid. If default occurs in a repayment plan arranged other than during a personal interview, the mortgagee must have a face-to-face meeting with the mortgagor, or make a reasonable attempt to arrange such a meeting within 30 days after such default and at least 30 days before foreclosure is commenced, or at least 30 days before assignment is requested if the mortgage is insured on Hawaiian home land pursuant to section 247 or Indian land pursuant to section 248 or if assignment is requested under §203.350(d) for mortgages authorized by section 203(q) of the National Housing Act.

(c) A face-to-face meeting is not required if:

(1) The mortgagor does not reside in the mortgaged property,

(2) The mortgaged property is not within 200 miles of the mortgagee, its servicer, or a branch office of either,

(3) The mortgagor has clearly indicated that he will not cooperate in the interview,

(4) A repayment plan consistent with the mortgagor's circumstances is entered into to bring the mortgagor's account current thus making a meeting unnecessary, and payments thereunder are current, or

(5) A reasonable effort to arrange a meeting is unsuccessful.

(d) A reasonable effort to arrange a face-to-face meeting with the mortgagor shall consist at a minimum of one letter sent to the mortgagor certified by the Postal Service as having been dispatched. Such a reasonable effort to arrange a face-to-face meeting shall also include at least one trip to see the mortgagor at the mortgaged property, unless the mortgaged property is more than 200 miles from the mortgagee, its servicer, or a branch office of either, or it is known that the mortgagor is not residing in the mortgaged property.

(e)(1) For mortgages insured pursuant to section 248 of the National Housing Act, the provisions of paragraphs (b), (c) and (d) of this section are applicable, except that a face-to-face meeting with the mortgagor is required, and a reasonable effort to arrange such a meeting shall include at least one trip to see the mortgagor at the mortgaged property, notwithstanding that such property is more than 200 miles from the mortgagee, its servicer, or a branch office of either. In addition, the mortgagee must document that it has made at least one telephone call to the mortgagor for the purpose of trying to arrange a face-to-face interview. The mortgagee may appoint an agent to perform its responsibilities under this paragraph.

(2) The mortgagee must also:

(i) Inform the mortgagor that HUD will make information regarding the status and payment history of the mortgagor's loan available to local credit bureaus and prospective creditors;

(ii) Inform the mortgagor of other available assistance, if any;

(iii) Inform the mortgagor of the names and addresses of HUD officials to whom further communications may be addressed.

(Approved by the Office of Management and Budget under control number 2502-0340)

[41 FR 49736, Nov. 10, 1976, as amended at 51 FR 21873, June 16, 1986; 52 FR 48202, Dec. 21, 1987; 53 FR 9869, Mar. 28, 1988; 61 FR 35019, July 3, 1996; 61 FR 36266, July 9, 1996]

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§203.605   Loss mitigation performance.

(a) Duty to mitigate. Before four full monthly installments due on the mortgage have become unpaid, the mortgagee shall evaluate on a monthly basis all of the loss mitigation techniques provided at §203.501 to determine which is appropriate. Based upon such evaluations, the mortgagee shall take the appropriate loss mitigation action. Documentation must be maintained for the initial and all subsequent evaluations and resulting loss mitigation actions. Should a claim for mortgage insurance benefits later be filed, the mortgagee shall maintain this documentation in the claim review file under the requirements of §203.365(c).

(b) Assessment of mortgagee's loss mitigation performance. (1) HUD will measure and advise mortgagees of their loss mitigation performance through the Tier Ranking System (TRS). Under the TRS, HUD will analyze each mortgagee's loss mitigation efforts portfolio-wide on a quarterly basis, based on 12 months of performance, by computing ratios involving loss mitigation attempts, defaults, and claims. Based on the ratios, HUD will group mortgagees in four tiers (Tiers 1, 2, 3, and 4), with Tier 1 representing the highest or best ranking mortgagees and Tier 4 representing the lowest or least satisfactory ranking mortgagees. The precise methodology for calculating the TRS ratios and for determining the tier stratification (or cutoff points) will be provided through Federal Register notice. Notice of future TRS methodology or stratification changes will be published in the Federal Register and will provide a 30-day public comment period.

(2) Before HUD issues each quarterly TRS notice, HUD will review the number of claims paid to the mortgagee. If HUD determines that the lender's low TRS score is the result of a small number of defaults or a small number of foreclosure claims, or both, as defined by notice, HUD may determine not to designate the mortgagee as Tier 3 or Tier 4, and the mortgagee will remain unranked.

(3) Within 30 calendar days after the date of the TRS notice, a mortgagee that scored in Tier 4 may appeal its ranking to the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Single Family or the Deputy Assistant Secretary's designee and request an informal HUD conference. The only basis for appeal by the Tier 4 mortgagee is disagreement with the data used by HUD to calculate the mortgagee's ranking. If HUD determines that the mortgagee's Tier 4 ranking was based on incorrect or incomplete data, the mortgagee's performance will be recalculated and the mortgagee will receive a corrected tier ranking score.

(c) Assessment of civil money penalty. A mortgagee that is found to have failed to engage in loss mitigation as required under paragraph (a) of this section shall be liable for a civil money penalty as provided in §30.35(c) of this title.

[70 FR 21578, Apr. 26, 2005]

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§203.606   Pre-foreclosure review.

(a) Before initiating foreclosure, the mortgagee must ensure that all servicing requirements of this subpart have been met. The mortgagee may not commence foreclosure for a monetary default unless at least three full monthly installments due under the mortgage are unpaid after application of any partial payments that may have been accepted but not yet applied to the mortgage account. In addition, prior to initiating any action required by law to foreclose the mortgage, the mortgagee shall notify the mortgagor in a format prescribed by the Secretary that the mortgagor is in default and the mortgagee intends to foreclose unless the mortgagor cures the default.

(b) If the mortgagee determines that any of the following conditions has been met, the mortgagee may initiate foreclosure without the delay in foreclosure required by paragraph (a) of this section:

(1) The mortgaged property has been abandoned, or has been vacant for more than 60 days.

(2) The mortgagor, after being clearly advised of the options available for relief, has clearly stated in writing that he or she has no intention of fulfilling his or her obligation under the mortgage.

(3) The mortgaged property is not the mortgagor's principal residence and it is occupied by tenants who are paying rent, but the rental income is not being applied to the mortgage debt.

(4) The property is owned by a corporation or partnership.

[52 FR 6915, Mar. 5, 1987, as amended at 61 FR 35020, July 3, 1996]

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§203.608   Reinstatement.

The mortgagee shall permit reinstatement of a mortgage, even after the institution of foreclosure proceedings, if the mortgagor tenders in a lump sum all amounts required to bring the account current, including foreclosure costs and reasonable attorney's fees and expenses properly associated with the foreclosure action, unless: (a) The mortgagee has accepted reinstatement after the institution of foreclosure proceedings within two years immediately preceding the commencement of the current foreclosure action, (b) reinstatement will preclude foreclosure following a subsequent default, or (c) reinstatement will adversely affect the priority of the mortgage lien.

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§203.610   Relief for mortgagor in military service.

The mortgagee shall specifically give consideration to affording the mortgagor the benefit of relief authorized by §§203.345 and 203.346, if the mortgagor is person in the military service as that term is defined in the Soldiers and Sailors Civil Relief Act of 1940, as amended.

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§203.614   Special forbearance.

If the mortgagee finds that a default is due to circumstances beyond the mortgagor's control, as defined by HUD, the mortgagee may grant special forbearance relief to the mortgagor in accordance with the conditions prescribed by HUD.

[61 FR 35020, July 3, 1996]

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§203.616   Mortgage modification.

The mortgagee may modify a mortgage for the purpose of changing the amortization provisions by recasting the total unpaid amount due for a term not exceeding 360 months. The mortgagee must notify HUD of such modification in a format prescribed by HUD within 30 days of the execution of the modification agreement.

[62 FR 60130, Nov. 6, 1997]

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Mortgages in Default on Property Located on Indian Reservations

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§203.664   Processing defaulted mortgages on property located on Indian land.

Before a mortgagee requests that the Secretary accept assignment under §203.350(b) of a mortgage insured pursuant to section 248 of the National Housing Act (§203.43h), the mortgagee must submit documents showing that the requirements of §203.604 have been met.

[61 FR 35020, July 3, 1996]

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Mortgages in Default on Property Located on Hawaiian Home Lands

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§203.665   Processing defaulted mortgages on property located on Hawaiian home lands.

Before a mortgagee requests the Secretary to accept assignment under §203.350(c) of a mortgage insured pursuant to section 247 of the National Housing Act (§203.43i), the mortgagee must submit documents showing that the requirements of §203.604 have been met.

[61 FR 35020, July 3, 1996]

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Assignment and Forbearance—Property in Allegany Reservation of Seneca Indians

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§203.666   Processing defaulted mortgages on property in Allegany Reservation of Seneca Nation of Indians.

(a) Applicability. This section applies to mortgages authorized by section 203(q) of the National Housing Act (§203.43j) only if the default occurred before the mortgagor and the lessee execute a lease renewal or a new lease either with a term of not less than five years beyond the maturity date of the mortgage, or with a term established by an arbitration award.

(b) Claims through assignment. Before a mortgagee requests the Secretary to accept assignment under §203.350(d) the mortgagee must submit documents showing that the requirements of §203.604 have been met.

[53 FR 13405, Apr. 25, 1988, as amended at 61 FR 35020, July 3, 1996]

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Occupied Conveyance

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§203.670   Conveyance of occupied property.

(a) It is HUD's policy to reduce the inventory of acquired properties in a manner that expands homeownership opportunities, strengthens neighborhoods and communities, and ensures a maximum return to the mortgage insurance fund.

(b) The Secretary will accept conveyance of an occupied property containing one to four residential units if the Secretary finds that:

(1) An individual residing in the property suffers from a temporary, permanent, or long-term illness or injury that would be aggravated by the process of moving from the property, and that the individual meets the eligibility criteria in §203.674(a);

(2) State or local law prohibits the mortgagee from evicting a tenant residing in the property who is making regular monthly payments to the mortgagor, or prohibits eviction for other similar reasons beyond the control of the mortgagee; or

(3) It is in the Secretary's interest to accept conveyance of the property occupied under §203.671, the property is habitable as defined in §203.673, and, except for conveyances under §203.671(d), each occupant who intends to remain in the property after the conveyance meets the eligibility criteria in §203.674(b).

(c) HUD consents to accept good marketable title to occupied property where 90 days have elapsed since the mortgagee notified HUD of pending acquisition, the Department has notified the mortgagee that it was considering a request for continued occupancy, and no subsequent notification from HUD has been received by the mortgagee.

[53 FR 874, Jan. 14, 1988, as amended at 56 FR 46967, Sept. 16, 1991; 58 FR 54246, Oct. 20, 1993; 61 FR 36266, July 9, 1996]

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§203.671   Criteria for determining the Secretary's interest.

It is in the Secretary's interest to accept occupied conveyance when one or more of the following are met:

(a) Occupancy of the property is essential to protect it from vandalism from time of acquisition to the time of preparation for sale.

(b) The average time in inventory for HUD's unsold inventory in the residential area in which the property is located exceeds six months.

(c) With respect to multi-unit properties, the marketability of the property would be improved by retaining occupancy of one or more units.

(d) The high cost of eviction or relocation expenses makes eviction impractical.

[45 FR 59563, Sept. 10, 1980, as amended at 56 FR 46967, Sept. 16, 1991; 58 FR 54246, Oct. 20, 1993]

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§203.672   Residential areas.

(a) For the purposes of occupied conveyance considerations, a residential area is any area which constitutes a local economic market for the purchase and sale of residential real estate. In making determinations of residential areas, substantial weight shall be given to delineations of such areas commonly used by persons active in the real estate industry in the affected area.

(b) HUD shall establish such residential areas within six (6) months of the publication of these regulations when HUD's current established patterns of dealing with the disposition of its acquired home property inventory and related recordkeeping does not coincide with paragraph (a) of this section. Under such circumstances the Secretary shall apply such established patterns in defining residential areas until the standards in paragraph (a) of this section are implemented.

[45 FR 59563, Sept. 10, 1980]

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§203.673   Habitability.

(a) For purposes of §203.670, a property is habitable if it meets the requirements of this section in its present condition, or will meet these requirements with the expenditure of not more than five percent of the fair market value of the property. The cost of hazard reduction or abatement of lead-based paint hazards in the property, as required by the Lead-Based Paint Poisoning Prevention Act (42 U.S.C. 4821-4846), and the Residential Lead-Based Paint Hazard Reduction Act of 1992 (42 U.S.C. 4851-4856), and implementing regulations in part 35 of this title, is excluded from these repair cost limitations.

(b)(1) Each residential unit must contain:

(i) Heating facilities adequate for healthful and comfortable living conditions, taking into consideration the local climate;

(ii) Adequate electrical supply for lighting and for equipment used in the residential unit;

(iii) Adequate cooking facilities;

(iv) A continuing supply of hot and cold water; and

(v) Adequate sanitary facilities and a safe method of sewage disposal.

(2) The property shall be structurally sound, reasonably durable, and free from hazards that may adversely affect the health and safety of the occupants or may impair the customary use and enjoyment by the occupants. Unacceptable hazards include, but are not limited to, subsidence, erosion, flood, exposure to the elements, exposed or unsafe electrical wiring, or an accumulation of minor hazards, such as broken stairs.

(c) If repairs, including lead-based paint hazard reduction or abatement, are to be made while the property is occupied, the occupant must hold the Secretary and the Department harmless against any personal injury or property damage that may occur during the process of making repairs. If temporary relocation of the occupant is necessary during repairs, no reimbursement for relocation expenses will be provided to the occupant.

[53 FR 874, Jan. 14, 1988, as amended at 64 FR 50225, Sept. 15, 1999]

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§203.674   Eligibility for continued occupancy.

(a) Occupancy because of temporary, permanent, or long-term illness or injury of an individual residing in the property will be limited to a reasonable time, to be determined by the Secretary on a case-by-case basis, and will be permitted only if all the conditions in this paragraph (a) are met:

(1) A timely request is made in accordance with §203.676, including the submittal of documents required in §203.675(b)(4).

(2) The occupant agrees to execute a month-to-month lease, at the time of acquisition of the property by the Secretary and on a form prescribed by HUD, and to pay a fair market rent as determined by the Secretary. The rental rate shall be established on the basis of rents charged for other properties in comparable condition after completion of repairs (if any).

(3) The occupant's total housing cost (rent plus utility costs to be paid by the occupant) will not exceed 38 percent of the occupant's net effective income (gross income less Federal income taxes). However, a higher percentage may be permitted if the occupant has been paying at least the required rental amount for the dwelling, or if there are other compensating factors (e.g., where the occupant is able to rely on cash savings or on contributions from family members to cover total housing costs).

(4) The occupant agrees to allow access to the property (during normal business hours and upon a minimum of two days advance notice) by HUD Field Office staff or by a HUD representative, so that the property may be inspected and any necessary repairs accomplished, or by a sales broker.

(5) The occupant discloses and verifies Social Security Numbers, as provided by part 200, subpart T, of this chapter.

(b) An occupant who does not meet the illness or injury criteria in paragraph (a) of this section is eligible for continued occupancy only if all the conditions in this paragraph (b) are met:

(1) A timely request is made in accordance with §203.676.

(2) The occupant agrees to execute a month-to-month lease, at the time of acquisition of the property by the Secretary and on a form prescribed by HUD, to pay fair market rent as determined by the Secretary, and to pay the rent for the first month in advance at the time the lease is executed. The rental rate shall be established on the basis of rents charged for other properties in comparable condition after completion of repairs (if any).

(3) The occupant will have been in occupancy at least 90 days before the date the mortgagee acquires title to the property.

(4) The occupant's total housing cost (rent plus utility costs to be paid by the occupant) will not exceed 38 percent of the occupant's net effective income (gross income less Federal income taxes). However, a higher percentage may be permitted if the occupant has been paying at least the required rental amount for the dwelling, or if there are other compensating factors (e.g., where the occupant is able to rely on cash savings or on contributions from family members to cover total housing costs).

(5) The occupant agrees to allow access to the property (during normal business hours and upon a minimum of two days advance notice) by HUD Field Office staff or by a HUD representative, so that the property may be inspected and any necessary repairs accomplished, or by a sales broker.

(6) The occupant discloses and verifies Social Security Number, as provided by part 200, subpart T, of this chapter.

(Approved by the Office of Management and Budget under control number 2502-0268)

[53 FR 874, Jan. 14, 1988, and 53 FR 8626, Mar. 16, 1988, as amended at 54 FR 39693, Sept. 27, 1989; 56 FR 46967, Sept. 16, 1991]

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§203.675   Notice to occupants of pending acquisition.

(a) At least 60 days, but not more than 90 days, before the date on which the mortgagee reasonably expects to acquire title to the property, the mortgagee shall notify the mortgagor and each head of household who is actually occupying a unit of the property of its potential acquisition by HUD. The mortgagee shall send a copy of this notification to the appropriate HUD Field Office.

(b) The notice shall provide a brief summary of the conditions under which continued occupancy is permissible and advise them that:

(1) Potential acquisition of the property by the Secretary is pending;

(2) The Secretary requires that properties be vacant at the time of conveyance to the Secretary, unless the mortgagor or other occupant can meet the conditions for continued occupany in §203.670, the habitability criteria in §203.673, and the eligibility criteria in §203.674;

(3) An occupant may request permission to remain in occupancy in the event of acquisition of the property by the Secretary by notifying the HUD Field Office in writing, with any required documentation, within 20 days of the date of the mortgagee's notice to the occupant;

(4) If an occupant seeks to qualify for continued occupancy under the illness or injury provisions of §203.674(a), the occupant shall provide to the HUD Field Office, at the time of the occupant's request for permission to remain in occupancy, documentation to support this claim. Documentation shall include an estimate of the time when the patient could be moved without severely aggravating the illness or injury, and a statement by a State-certified physician establishing the validity of the occupant's claim. HUD may require more than one medical opinion or may arrange an examination by a physician approved by HUD; and

(5) If an occupant fails to make a timely request, the property must be vacated before the scheduled time of acquisition.

(Approved by the Office of Management and Budget under control number 2502-0268)

[53 FR 875, Jan. 14, 1988, and 53 FR 8626, Mar. 16, 1988, as amended at 58 FR 54246, Oct. 20, 1993]

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§203.676   Request for continued occupancy.

An occupant may request permission to continue to occupy the property following conveyance to the Secretary by notifying the HUD Field Office in writing, within 20 days after the date of the mortgagee's notice of pending acquisition. Verification of illness or injury as described in §203.675(b)(4) shall be submitted within this time period if an occupant seeks to qualify for continued occupancy under the provisions of §203.674(a). The HUD Field Office will notify the mortgagee in writing that an occupied conveyance has been requested.

(Approved by the Office of Management and Budget under control number 2502-0268)

[53 FR 875, Jan. 14, 1988, and 53 FR 8626, Mar. 16, 1988, as amended at 58 FR 54246, Oct. 20, 1993]

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§203.677   Decision to approve or deny a request.

(a) The HUD Field Office will provide written notification of its decision to an occupant who makes a timely request to continue to occupy the property. The decision of the HUD Field Office on this matter will be made by the Chief, Property Disposition. If the decision is to deny the request, the notice to the occupant will include a statement of the reason or reasons for the decision and of the occupant's right to appeal. The occupant may appeal HUD's decision within 20 days after the date of HUD's notice. The appeal must be addressed to the Field Office Manager and be in writing, and the occupant may provide documentation intended to refute the reasons given for HUD's decision. The occupant may also request an informal conference with a representative of the HUD Field Office Manager. A request for an informal conference must be made in writing within 10 days after the date of HUD's notice. The occupant may be represented at the conference by counsel or by other persons with pertinent expert knowledge or experience.

(b) After notification that HUD has denied a request for continued occupancy, the occupant, on his or her request, shall be permitted to review all relevant material in HUD's possession (including a copy of the inspection report if the request is denied because the property is not habitable as defined in §203.673). Only material in HUD's possession that directly pertains to conditions for continued occupancy under §§203.670, 203.673, and 203.674 may be considered material relevant for an occupant's review under this paragraph. This review shall be limited to a review of material for purposes of the informal conference or the appeal of the Department's decision. The information will only be provided after request for an informal conference or appeal has been submitted to HUD.

(c) After consideration of an appeal, the HUD Field Office will notify the applicant in writing of HUD's final decision. This final decision will be made by the HUD Field Office Manager or a representative of the Field Office Manager (other than the Chief, Property Disposition). If the decision is to deny the occupant's request, the notice to the occupant will reflect consideration of the issues raised by the occupant.

(d) If, after consideration of an appeal, the Field Office Manager denies the request for new or additional reasons, the occupant will be afforded an opportunity to request that the Field Office Manager reconsider its decision under the provisions of paragraph (c) of this section.

[53 FR 875, Jan. 14, 1988, and 53 FR 8626, Mar. 16, 1988]

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§203.678   Conveyance of vacant property.

(a) HUD will require that the property be conveyed vacant if the occupant fails to request permission to continue to occupy within the time period specified in §203.676, or fails to request a conference or to appeal a decision to deny occupied conveyance within the time period specified in §203.677(a).

(b) If the mortgagee has not been notified by HUD, within 45 days of the date of the mortgagee's notification of pending acquisition, that a request for continued occupancy is under consideration, the mortgagee shall convey the property vacant, unless otherwise directed by HUD.

[53 FR 875, Jan. 14, 1988, and 53 FR 8626, Mar. 16, 1988]

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§203.679   Continued occupancy after conveyance.

(a) Occupancy of HUD-acquired property is temporary in all cases and is subject to termination when necessary to facilitate preparing the property for sale and completing the sale.

(b) HUD will notify the occupant to vacate the property and, if necessary, will take appropriate eviction action in any of the following situations:

(1) Failure of the occupant to execute the lease required by §203.674 (a)(2) and (b)(2), or failure to pay the rental amount required, including the initial payment at the time of execution of the lease, or to comply with the terms of the lease;

(2) Failure of the occupant to allow access to the property upon request in accordance with §203.674 (a)(4) and (b)(5);

(3) Necessity to prepare the property for sale; or

(4) Assignment of the property by the Secretary to a different use or program.

[53 FR 876, Jan. 14, 1988, and 53 FR 8626, Mar. 16, 1988; 61 FR 36266, July 9, 1996]

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§203.680   Approval of occupancy after conveyance.

When an occupied property is conveyed to HUD before HUD has had an opportunity to consider continued occupancy (e.g., where HUD has taken more than 90 days to make a final decision on continued occupancy in accordance with §203.670(c)), a determination regarding continued occupancy will be made in accordance with the conditions for the initial approval of occupied conveyance. Any such determination shall be in accordance with HUD's obligations under the terms of any month-to-month lease that has been executed.

[53 FR 876, Jan. 14, 1988, and 53 FR 8626, Mar. 16, 1988]

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§203.681   Authority of HUD Field Office Managers.

Field Office Managers shall act for the Secretary in all matters relating to assignment and occupied conveyance determinations. The decision of the Field Office Manager under §203.677 will be final and not be subject to further administrative review.

[53 FR 876, Jan. 14, 1988, and 53 FR 8626, Mar. 16, 1988]

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