Federal housing finance research just got easier

November 2, 2010

housing maze (graphic)Whether you represent banks or their customers, you need to know your way around federal housing finance and its alphabet soup of federal acts and agencies – which is no easy feat.

Not only are the rules complex, notes a recent article in National Mortgage News, but they’re also a moving target, thanks to recent efforts to strengthen the FHA program.

Westlaw just released six databases with info on foreclosure prevention, valuation analysis considerations, national lending trends, and related topics from the FHA, FHFA and Veterans Affairs.

Here’s a quick rundown of the newly released federal housing databases on Westlaw:

  • FHA Handbooks (FHAHB) – Full text of handbooks published by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (which oversees the FHA), with procedures and information for lenders making FHA loans.
    Sample query: ti,pr(“valuation analysis”)
  • FHA Home Loan Handbook (FHAHL) – The full text of the FHA Home Loan Handbook, which covers FHA lending amounts and closings and includes frequently asked questions and an FHA glossary.
    Sample query: “f.h.a. mortgage advice”
  • FHFA Bank Exam Manual (FHFA-BEM) – The full text of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) Examination Manual, which provides examination objectives and procedures for FHFA bank examiners.
    Sample query: ti,pr(“examination process”)
  • FHFA Agency Guidances (FHFA-AG) – FHFA guidelines, including Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight (OFHEO) policy guidances and guidelines.
    Sample query: “fannie mae”
  • FHFA Agency Reports (FHFA-AR) – FHFA reports, including those covering collateral securing advances, federal property managers, foreclosure prevention, and refinance.
    Sample query: ti,pr(“foreclosure prevention”)
  • Veterans Affairs Lender’s Handbook (VALHBK) – Full text of the Lender’s Handbook (VA Pamphlet 26-7 (Revised)), with information and guidance for lenders making loans guaranteed by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.
    Sample query: ti,pr(“v.a. loan”)