In the News
The two government-sponsored mortgage giants, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, are raising their loan fees and implementing a new program to cut down on abusive appraisals.
Virginia Governor Tim Kaine recently signed a revision of the Property Owners' Association Act (POAA) that allows community association members to get salary information for the top six employees earning over $75,000. The revision takes effect July 1. Currently, only aggregate salary information is available. The bill also specifies that all books and records of the association, including individual salary information for all employees and payments to independent contractors, be made available to members of the association's board of directors.
Foreclosure filings in the U.S. climbed 30 percent in February from a year earlier as the worsening economy thwarted efforts by the government and lenders to prevent homeowners from losing property.
As nonsmokers become more assertive about their right not to breathe secondhand smoke, there has been increasing litigation over the issue of smoking in condominiums.
A recent California case is an example of this, and it may push boards to consider eliminating smoking in the common areas of condominium communities. Although the case involves an apartment complex, there are similarities with how smoking in condominiums has been litigated—and will continue to be litigated.
The Federal National Mortgage Association, or Fannie Mae, has taken steps to make the cost of purchasing or refinancing a condo more expensive, unless the purchaser makes a sizable down payment.
With many lenders already wary of condo loans because of their default rate, Fannie Mae has added a fee of .75 percent of the loan amount of a 30-year fixed mortgage, for borrowers who put down 25 percent of the purchase price or less, effective April 1, 2009.
Big changes are coming to broadcast television, and some of your members may have been contacting your management office with questions about the upcoming change. Currently, broadcast stations are broadcasting in both analog and digital. But on Feb. 17, 2009, all full-power broadcast television stations are required to stop broadcasting in analog and continue broadcasting in digital only. This is known as the digital television (DTV) transition.
If someone tells your association that a sex offender is living in your community, confirming the accuracy of the information has been made easier through the Sex Offender Registration and Notification Act (SORNA). This law established a new, comprehensive set of minimum standards for sex offender registration and notification throughout the United States.
In an already difficult condominium market, Fannie Mae, the largest provider of financing for U.S. home loans, has adopted new underwriting guidelines that have since resulted in an increase in mortgage application rejections. The revised rules are a response to rising loan delinquencies and defaults. But the new policies also reflect long-standing concerns about the need for lenders to assess the financial strength of community associations, as well as the credit profiles of the prospective members borrowing money to purchase homes in condominium buildings.