The simple answer to that question is YES! HUD drafted a 67 page contingency plan in the event of a government shutdown. The HUD 2013 Contingency Plan Draft 9/25/2013 states the Office of Single Family Housing will:
- endorse new loans under the current multi-year appropriation authority in order to support the health and stability of the mortgage market.
- maintain the minimum operations necessary to support FHA’s existing portfolio by operating both the FHA Call Center and the National Servicing Center’s Call Center ensuring the continuity of FHA’s REO disposition process.
- continue to work on planned sales of defaulted notes.
From the Frequently Asked Questions section beginning on page 48 (I’m skipping the Q’s and focusing on the A’s):
- FHA will be able to endorse single family loans during during the shutdown.
- Because we are able to endorse loans, we do not expect the impact on the housing market to be significant, as long as the shutdown is brief. If the shutdown lasts and our commitment authority runs out, we do expect that potential homeowners will be impacted, as well as home sellers and the entire housing market. We could also see a decline in home sales during an extended shut down period, reversing the trend toward a strengthening market we’ve been experiencing.
- Lenders will be able to obtain FHA case numbers. [This is needed to originate and close new FHA loans.]
- Most loss mitigation for home owners facing foreclosure (including FHA loan modifications, FHA-HAMP, etc) will continue.
We do not anticipate issues with originating, processing, underwriting, funding or closing FHA loans at our company.
If you are considering buying or refinancing a home located anywhere in Washington state with an FHA insured mortgage, I’m happy to help you!
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UPDATE October 3, 2013: VA is still operating their mortgage division. USDA has ceased all non-essential operations.