Industry NewsMortgage

FHA premiums to be based on risk

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The Bush administration proposes to implement "risk-based" pricing of premiums paid by borrowers with government-backed loans beginning July 14 -- the same day guidelines for FHA loan guarantee programs are to be expanded to serve more delinquent borrowers. The more flexible pricing structure, which would also allow FHA to reduce mortgage insurance premiums for some borrowers with good credit, is intended to enable the government to serve more troubled borrowers while protecting taxpayers from losses, HUD officials said. The proposed change in pricing will be published in the Federal Register for public comment on May 13. Under the current pricing structure, all borrowers regardless of their credit standing pay 1.5 percent of loan balance up front and 0.5 percent a year. Under risk-based pricing, the upfront premium will range from 1.25 percent to 2.25 percent. On a $150,000 mortgage, the difference between the existing 1.5 percent upfront premium and the 2.25 ...