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FHA Condominium Loans make it possible to purchase housing units in a condominium building. Mortgage insurance for this type of housing is provided through FHA Section 234(c).

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May 26, 2019
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FHA Loans for Condominium Units

Condo Loans Insured Through Section 234(c)

FHA Condominium Loans are specifically geared toward those who purchase housing units in a condominium building. Condominium ownership, in which separate owners of individual units jointly own the development's common areas and facilities, is for some a very popular alternative to home ownership. Insurance for this type of housing is provided through FHA Section 234(c). This FHA insurance is very important for low and moderate-income renters who wish to avoid the risk of being displaced when their apartments are converted into condominiums.

How it Works

Of the many types of mortgage insurance offered by FHA, FHA Condominium Loans are designed to encourage lenders to extend affordable mortgage credit to those who have non-conventional forms of ownership. The Section 234(c) program insures a loan for 30 years to purchase a unit in a condominium building. The building must contain at least four dwelling units and can be comprised of detached and semidetached units, row houses, walkups, or an elevator structure.

Through this and other types of mortgage insurance programs, FHA helps low and moderate-income families purchase homes with FHA loans by keeping the initial costs down. By serving as an umbrella under which lenders have the confidence to extend loans to those who may not meet conventional loan requirements, FHA loan insurance allows individuals to qualify who may have been previously denied for a home loan by conventional underwriting guidelines.

Available Assistance

Many of the features of Section 234(c) mortgage insurance are similar to those of FHA Section 203(b) for one to four-family homes. Down payment requirements are low because these FHA loans allow borrowers to finance up to 96.5 percent of their home loan and some of the closing costs can also be financed, further reducing up front costs. On a Section 234(c) loan, FHA sets limits on the size of the loan which vary with location and the number of units being purchased.

Restrictions

If the apartment is in a building that was converted from rental housing, insurance may not be provided under Section 234(c) unless:

  • the conversion occurred more than one year prior to the application for insurance.
  • the potential buyer or co-buyer was a tenant of that rental housing.
  • the conversion of the property is sponsored by a tenant's organization that represents a majority of the households in the project.

Eighty percent of FHA mortgages in the project must be made to owner-occupants.

Eligibility

Any creditworthy persons who meet FHA underwriting criteria and are intending to occupy the condominium unit as their principal residence are eligible to apply.

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