(a) Initial approval. A lender or mortgagee may be approved for participation in the Title I or Title II programs upon filing a request for approval on a form prescribed by the Secretary and signed by the applicant. The approval form shall be accompanied by such documentation as may be prescribed by the Secretary.
(1) Approval is signified by:
(i) The Secretary's agreement that the lender or mortgagee is considered approved under the Title I or Title II programs, except as otherwise ordered by the Mortgagee Review Board or an officer or subdivision of the Department to which the Mortgagee Review Board has delegated its power, unless the lender or mortgagee voluntarily relinquishes its approval;
(ii) Consent by the lender or mortgagee to comply at all times with the general approval requirements of § 202.5, and with additional requirements governing the particular class of lender or mortgagee for which it was approved as described under subpart B at §§ 202.6 through 202.10; and
(iii) Under the Title I program, the issuance of a Contract of Insurance constitutes an agreement between the Secretary and the lender and which governs participation in the Title I program.
(2) Limitations on approval:
(i) Separate approval as lender or mortgagee is required for participation in the Title I or Title II programs, respectively. Application must be made, and approval will be granted, on the basis of one or both categories of programs, as is appropriate.
(ii) Separate approval as mortgagee is required for the Single Family Mortgage Insurance Programs and for the Multifamily Mortgage Insurance Programs. Application must be made, and approval will be granted, on the basis of either or both categories, as is appropriate.
(iii) In addition to the requirements for approval as a Title II mortgagee, the Secretary may from time to time issue eligibility requirements for participation in specific programs, such as the Direct Endorsement program.
(iv) A Title II mortgagee may be approved to operate either on a nationwide basis or on a geographically restricted basis in only those areas designated by the Secretary.
(v) A Title I lender may originate loans or purchase advances of credit only within a geographic lending area approved by the Secretary. Expansion of this lending area shall be subject to a determination by the Secretary that the lender is able to originate loans in compliance with part 201 of this chapter within such expanded area.
(3) Authorized agents. A mortgagee approved under §§ 202.6, 202.7, or 202.10 as a nonsupervised mortgagee, supervised mortgagee, or governmental or similar institution approved as a Direct Endorsement mortgagee under 24 CFR 203.3 may, with the approval of the Secretary, designate a nonsupervised or supervised mortgagee with Direct Endorsement approval under 24 CFR 203.3 as authorized agent for the purpose of underwriting loans. The application for mortgage insurance may be submitted in the name of the FHA-approved mortgagee or its designated authorized agent under this paragraph.
(b) Recertification. On each anniversary of the approval of a lender or mortgagee, the Secretary will determine whether recertification, i.e., continued approval, is appropriate. The Secretary will review the yearly verification report required by § 202.5(m) and other pertinent documents, ascertain that all application and annual fees have been paid, and request any further information needed to decide upon recertification.
(c) Termination -
(1) Termination of the Title I Contract of Insurance -
(i) Notice. A Contract of Insurance may be terminated in accordance with its terms by the Secretary or by the Secretary's designee upon giving the lender at least 5 days prior written notice.
(ii) Informal meeting. If requested, and before expiration of the 5-day notice period, a lender shall be entitled to an informal meeting with the Department official taking action to terminate the Contract of Insurance.
(iii) Effect of termination. Termination of a Contract of Insurance shall not affect:
(A) The Department's obligation to provide insurance coverage with respect to eligible loans originated before the termination, unless there was fraud or misrepresentation;
(B) A lender's obligation to continue to pay insurance charges or premiums and meet all other obligations, including servicing, associated with eligible loans originated before termination; or
(C) A lender's right to apply for and be granted a new Title I Contract of Insurance, provided that the requirements for approval under this part are met.
(2) Credit Watch Termination.
(i) Scope and frequency of review. The Secretary will review, on an ongoing basis, the number of defaults and claims on mortgages originated, underwritten, or both, by each mortgagee in the geographic area served by a HUD field office. HUD will make this rate information available to mortgagees and the public through electronic means and will issue instructions for accessing this information through a Mortgagee Letter. For this purpose, and for all purposes under paragraph (c) of this section, a mortgage is considered to be originated in the same federal fiscal year in which its amortization commences. The Secretary may also review the insured mortgage performance of a mortgagee's branch offices individually and may terminate the authority of the branch or the authority of the mortgagee's overall operation.
(ii) Credit Watch Status. Mortgagees are responsible for monitoring their default and claim rate performance. A mortgagee is considered to be on Credit Watch Status if, at any time, the mortgagee has a rate of defaults and claims on insured mortgages originated, underwritten, or both, in an area which exceeds 150 percent of the normal rate and its origination approval agreement has not been terminated.
(iii) Notice of termination.
(A) Notice of termination of origination approval agreement. The Secretary may notify a mortgagee that its origination approval agreement will terminate 60 days after notice is given, if the mortgagee had a rate of defaults and claims on insured mortgages originated in an area which exceeded 200 percent of the normal rate and exceeded the national default and claim rate for insured mortgages.
(B) Notice of termination of direct endorsement approval. The Secretary may notify a mortgagee that its direct endorsement approval under 24 CFR part 203 will terminate 60 days after notice is given, if the mortgagee had a rate of defaults and claims on insured mortgages underwritten in an area which exceeded 200 percent of the normal rate and exceeded the national default and claim rate for insured mortgages. The termination of a mortgagee's direct endorsement approval pursuant to this section is separate and apart from the termination of a mortgagee's direct endorsement approval under 24 CFR part 203.
(C) No need for prior action by Mortgagee Review Board. The termination notices described in paragraphs (c)(2)(ii)(A) and (B) of this section may be given without prior action by the Mortgagee Review Board.
(D) Underserved areas. Before the Secretary sends the termination notice, the Secretary shall review the Census tract concentrations of the defaults and claims. If the Secretary determines that the excessive rate is the result of mortgage lending in underserved areas, as defined in 24 CFR 81.2, the Secretary may determine not to terminate the mortgagee's origination approval agreement and/or direct endorsement approval.
(iv) Request for informal conference. Prior to termination the mortgagee may submit a written request for an informal conference with the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Single Family Housing or that official's designee. HUD must receive the written request no later than 30 calendar days after the date of the proposed termination notice. Unless HUD grants an extension, the informal conference must be held no later than 60 calendar days after the date of the proposed termination notice. After considering relevant reasons and factors beyond the mortgagee's control that contributed to the excessive default and claim rates, the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Single Family Housing or designee may withdraw the termination notice.
(v) Limitation on the establishment of new branches. Upon receipt of a proposed termination notice of its origination approval agreement, the mortgagee shall not establish a new branch or new branches for the origination of FHA-insured mortgages in the area or areas that are covered by the proposed termination notice. As of January 18, 2005, a mortgagee that is in receipt of a notice of proposed termination may not establish any new branch in the location or locations cited in the proposed termination notice until either:
(A) The proposed termination notice is withdrawn or
(B) The Secretary reinstates the mortgagee's origination approval agreement, in accordance with paragraph (e) of this section.
(vi) Effects of termination.
(A) Termination of origination approval agreement. If a mortgagee's origination approval agreement is terminated, it may not originate single family insured mortgages unless the origination approval agreement is reinstated by the Secretary in accordance with paragraph (e) of this section, notwithstanding any other provision of this part except § 202.3(c)(2)(vii)(A).
(B) Termination of direct endorsement approval. If a mortgagee's direct endorsement approval is terminated, it may not underwrite single family insured mortgages for the area(s) identified in the termination notice, unless the direct endorsement approval is reinstated by the Secretary in accordance with paragraph (e) of this section, notwithstanding any other provision of this part except § 202.3(c)(2)(vii)(A).
(vii) Rights and obligations in the event of termination. Termination of the origination approval agreement and/or direct endorsement approval shall not affect:
(A) The eligibility of the mortgage for insurance, absent fraud or misrepresentation, if the mortgagor and all terms and conditions of the mortgage had been approved before the termination by the Direct Endorsement or Lender Insurance mortgagee or were covered by a firm commitment issued by the Secretary; however, no other mortgages originated or underwritten after the date of termination by the mortgagee shall be insured unless the mortgagee's origination approval agreement and/or direct endorsement approval is reinstated by the Secretary;
(B) The right of a mortgagee whose direct endorsement approval has been terminated to transfer cases to another mortgagee with direct endorsement approval for the area covered by the termination.
(C) A mortgagee's obligation to continue to pay insurance premiums and meet all other obligations, including servicing, associated with insured mortgages;
(D) A mortgagee's right to apply for reinstatement of the origination approval agreement and/or direct endorsement approval in accordance with paragraph (e) of this section; or
(E) A mortgagee's right to purchase insured mortgages or to service its own portfolio or the portfolios of other mortgagees with which it has a servicing contract.
(d) Withdrawal and suspension of approval. Lender or mortgagee approval may be suspended or withdrawn by the Mortgagee Review Board as provided in part 25 of this title.
(e) Reinstatement -
(1) General. A mortgagee whose origination approval agreement and/or direct endorsement approval has been terminated under paragraph (c) of this section may apply for reinstatement if:
(i) The origination approval agreement and/or direct endorsement approval for the affected branch or branches has been terminated for at least six months; and
(2) Application for reinstatement. The mortgagee's application for reinstatement must:
(i) Be in a format prescribed by the Secretary and signed by the mortgagee;
(ii) Be accompanied by an independent analysis of the terminated office's operations and identifying the underlying cause of the mortgagee's unacceptable default and claim rate. The independent analysis must be prepared by an independent Certified Public Accountant (CPA) qualified to perform audits under the government auditing standards issued by the General Accounting Office; and
(iii) Be accompanied by a corrective action plan addressing each of the issues identified in the independent analysis described in paragraph (e)(2)(ii) of this section, along with evidence demonstrating that the mortgagee has implemented the corrective action plan.
(3) HUD action on reinstatement application. The Secretary will grant the mortgagee's application for reinstatement if the mortgagee's application is complete and the Secretary determines that the underlying causes for the termination have been satisfactorily remedied.