FHA Loan Apps Rise as Borrowers Try to Beat Fee Hikes

Mortgage applications for Federal Housing Administration loans soared 11 percent from the previous week as borrowers try to rush their applications in to beat the higher FHA costs that will start rolling out on Monday, according to the U.S. Mortgage Market Index report released from Mortech Inc. and Mortgage Daily.

Starting April 1, the FHA will be increasing its annual mortgage insurance premiums on all FHA loans. The annual premium is paid with the monthly mortgage payment. The FHA also will be increasing the FHA mortgage insurance premium that is paid up front during closing, also starting April 1.

Borrowers who are trying to avoid the higher fees are trying to get their FHA mortgage applications approved before the changes take effect. The new fees also will apply to home owners who refinance their mortgages.

FHA loans have soared in popularity in recent years since they allow for smaller down payments, as low as 3.5 percent compared to traditional loans, and often carry less stringent credit requirements.

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