That home you’re looking at is a foreclosed house that is owned by Fannie Mae. Although the Fannie Mae HomePath mortgage program was officially discontinued on October 14thof 2014, the Fannie Mae HomePath properties are still available around the U.S., and can be seen on their website www.homepath.com. These houses are targeted towards first-time homebuyers who are just entering the housing market or investors, as the houses are typically sold in As Is condition
Are these homes right for you?
After the mortgage crisis Fannie Mae was left with a lot of bank-owned houses, and are now trying to unload them by offering incentives, such as the owner-occupant advantage. To encourage individual home ownership above investor ownership, owner-occupants are given an advantage through a program called First Look, which means only buyers who plan to actually live in the home are allowed to bid for the first two weeks of the listing release. If this sounds familiar to you, it could be because it’s quite similar to the HUD program for owner-occupants.
For potential homebuyers, a homeownership education course must first be completed before becoming eligible for the advantages. This course, which is offered in English and Spanish, is self-directed and covers several topics, such as:
- Deciding which home to purchase.
- Deciding which loan is best.
- Determining how much home is actually affordable.
A lot of the Fannie Mae houses that qualify for the HomePath program are in relatively poor shape, and are sold as-is, meaning you are responsible for repairs. You could be looking at a house with damages such as broken pipes, or potentially stepping into a home that has been completely stripped by vandals. A serious consideration is how you will get that work done without underestimating the costs and time involved. Be sure not to get in over your head just because you think you’ve found a great deal.
Another potential downfall — browsing the HomePath website, it is quickly evident that practically none of the properties are in highly sought after regions of Missouri. Remember, these are previously foreclosed properties, so it makes sense that they’re in areas hit the hardest by the mortgage crisis.
So what do you think? Does the Fannie Mae HomePath home program sound like the right move for you? If you’ve navigated their site and found your dream home in your dream location, and have the tools, skills, money, and time to tackle heavy home repair projects, then best of luck to you on your journey towards homeownership!