Freddie Eases Fla. Condo Project Requirements

Freddie Mac has revised its guidelines to exempt its sellers from condominium project requirements and certain representations and warranties for purchase transaction mortgages secured by condominium units located in Florida.

To qualify for exemption, the mortgage file must contain documentation verifying that the existing first-lien convention mortgage being purchased is owned or securitized by Freddie Mac. Additionally, the note date of the existing mortgage for the unit being purchased must be on or before Dec. 31, 2009, and the settlement date for the new mortgage must be on or before March 31, 2011.

The policy change, announced in a March 31 letter to sellers, is intended to increase the availability of financing for condo units in the state, which is home to one of the nation's hardest-hit condo markets. In January, Fannie Mae similarly announced that it would implement a ‘special approval’ designation for Florida condo projects that may not meet its standard eligibility requirements for financing.

Last week, Florida Realtors reported that condo sales in the state saw a 59% year-over-year increase in February. Slightly more than 5,000 units were sold statewide in February 2010, as compared to the 3,190 units sold in February 2009. The statewide existing condo median sales price in February 2010 was $92,200; in February 2009 it was $109,100, for a 15% decrease.

The national median existing condo price was $172,400 in January, according to the National Association of Realtors.

SOURCE: Freddie Mac


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