• MPF Xtra
  • April 16, 2020

MPF Announcement 2020-20

Important MPF Xtra Seller/Servicer Information on Impacts of COVID-19

Effective Date: Immediately (unless otherwise noted) 

On April 14, 2020, Fannie Mae issued an update to Lender Letter LL-2020-04, communicating temporary policies previously announced, to enable servicers to better assist borrowers impacted by COVID-19. The policies in this Lender Letter are effective immediately and are effective until Fannie Mae provides further notice, unless otherwise stated.

Fannie Mae Lender Letter LL-2020-04 – Impact of COVID-19 on Appraisals

Temporary Appraisal Policies

  • Flexibilities for project eligibility reviews on condo projects.
  • Clarified when it is acceptable to utilize virtual inspections for appraisals.
  • Flexibilities for new construction loans, including documentation requirements, completion reports for new construction properties, and builder certifications.
  • Additional form instructions for a desktop appraisal or an appraisal with an exterior-only inspection that is completed on a form for an interior and exterior inspection (e.g., Form 2055) as permitted above, the appraisal report must include, in the “Map Reference” field.
  • Temporary appraisal requirement flexibilities including:
  • Desktop appraisals-for purchase money transactions when an interior and exterior appraisal is not available, PFIs are encouraged to obtain a desktop appraisal rather than an exterior only appraisal.
  • Exterior only appraisals- may be obtained in lieu of an interior and exterior inspection appraisal for the following transactions: Purchase money loans and Term and rate refinances.
  • To accommodate the temporary appraisal policies in place, Fannie Mae developed appraisal documents that include modified language to be used with desktop appraisal reports and exterior only appraisal reports.
  • Reminder that PFIs are encouraged to accept appraisal waiver offers when eligible and provided through DU.
  • Additional accommodations for loans which require an Appraisal Update and/or Completion Report (1004D) but are unable to obtain due to issues related to COVID-19.

PFIs and Servicers of MPF XTRA must follow the relief policies and guidance issued by Fannie Mae, including the announcements below and by visiting Fannie Mae’s COVID-19 webpage.

Fannie Mae Lender Letter (LL-2020-02), Impact of COVID-19 on Servicing including the following policies:

  • Complying with the law: including the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) including:
    • Suspending foreclosure-related activities and certain bankruptcy requirements in accordance with the requirements of the CARES Act.
    • Complying with the credit reporting requirements of the Fair Credit Reporting Act (“FCRA”), as amended by the CARES Act for borrowers affected by the COVID-19.
  • Reminding Servicers of acceptable methods in attempting to achieve quality right party contact (QRPC) for borrowers impacted by COVID-19 for a forbearance plan.
  • Servicer’s responsibilities when reporting a reason for delinquency.
  • Providing flexibility with regards to property inspections and preservation in light of COVID-19 concerns.
  • Extended deadline for submission of financial statements and reports.
  • Forbearance plan terms for borrowers impacted by COVID-19.
  • Guidance for Servicers when evaluating the borrower for a payment deferral or mortgage loan modification after a forbearance plan.

Fannie Mae Lender Letter (LL-2020-03), Impact of COVID-19 on Originations providing the following temporary policies:

  • Modified age of income and asset documentation requirements from four months to two months.
  • Reduced the requirement to verify the existence of self-employed borrower from within 120 calendar days prior to the note date to 10 business days of the note date (or after closing but prior to delivery).
  • Guidance provided for market based assets when used as down payment or closing costs, and for reserves.
  • Additional flexibilities with regard to Powers of Attorneys.
  • Expansion of the use of remote online notarization.
  • Accommodations to existing quality control requirements.
  • Providing relief for obtaining verbal verification of employments by permitting allowing bank statements or emails form employer in lieu of verbal verification.
  • Reminding PFIs of the importance of ensuring sustainable homeownership for borrowers.
  • Extended the deadline for submission of financial statements and reports.
  • Reminder of the policies for notes, electronic records, and signatures.
  • Reminder to PFIs of the acceptable title insurance policy forms and coverage requirements.
  • Reminder to PFIs/Servicers of obligation to have business continuity/disaster recovery programs.

In addition, PFIs and Servicers originating, delivering or servicing:

  • MPF Traditional (Conventional) loans must follow the policies and guidance recently issued by the MPF Program. Please visit the MPF Website to view recently published MPF Announcements.
  • MPF Government loans and MPF Government MBS loans, must follow policies and guidance issued by the applicable Government Agencies.
  • MPF Direct loans, must follow policies and guidance issued by the product’s investor, Redwood Trust.

To gain a full understanding of these topics, PFIs and Servicers should review the entire Fannie Mae Lender Letter plus any applicable Fannie Mae Guide chapters, forms, or exhibits noted in the announcement.

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