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Approval Process & Consulting


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203k work has saved my bacon during the recent slowdown.

I like the work and it is profitable.

I set my own fees. The published fee schedule on the HUD website that consultants "may" charge is coming up on 20 years old. When establishing a new relationship with a lender, I am very forthright about my fees and make sure they understand.

I haven't had any problems in 13 years with working this way. If someone forced me somehow to cut back on my fees and adhere strictly to the published fee schedule I would stop doing the 203k; or cut the scope of what I do by about 50%, (that's a hint about my charges for doing a 203k.)

Any your lender guy is right, Mike. If you perform on these things better than the other guys, word will spread and you can get busy. The lenders need help doing these. THis is where a consultant can shine.

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I perform them. The application process is simple but I've heard HUD is a bit random in who they approve. They pay is not bad. It's worth my time.

The most frustrating part is getting the contractors to break their bid down enough to fill out the Work Write Up. A TIJer gave me a bit of help in getting started. He sent me an Excel file to work from. I reworked it to suit my needs. There is no need to purchase software.

It was a little intimidating on the first few. I had to figure out the role. It's really not a big deal. Happy to answer any questions you have.

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The most frustrating part is getting the contractors to break their bid down enough to fill out the Work Write Up. A TIJer gave me a bit of help in getting started. He sent me an Excel file to work from. I reworked it to suit my needs. There is no need to purchase software.

Charlie,

Be clear up front that you can't accept a bid if its not broken down properly.

If they give you grief, the response is, "If you want to get paid properly and on time, your bid needs to conform to how I've suggested."

Give them a sample bid to use as a guide.

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I really do not even go after the 203k business any longer. The pay scale that is set by HUD is from the mid 1990's and the red tape seems to be getting worse, or the lenders do not understand the program. You also need to realize that you do not get paid until the loan is closed and if it does not close for whatever reason you do not get paid.

The last two I consulted on were about 6 months ago. The poor buyers had the hardest time finding contractors in our area who were willing to go through the process with them. Finally we got them closed and everyone got paid! FYI, 203k's are all over the board depending on your area and the types of homes. The problem in our area are the contractors, they really do not want to mess with them.

Wells Fargo is the largest 203k lender in the nation. For the most they know the program when you deal with the regional folks but it has been my experience that the local loan folks really do not know much about the 203k process. WF is also strict about the fees that they allow you to charge, you must stay within the published fees they allow.

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Randy,

You wouldn't believe how it is down here. I've got on in the works right now. 80K job. The purchaser is on the second contractor and has not been able to get this contractor to respond to his calls. I kicked the bid back on Monday. Lots of good contractors are hungry for work. I don't get it. It makes me want to give back the work up fee and take the job.

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I really do not even go after the 203k business any longer. The pay scale that is set by HUD is from the mid 1990's and the red tape seems to be getting worse, or the lenders do not understand the program. You also need to realize that you do not get paid until the loan is closed and if it does not close for whatever reason you do not get paid.

Not true. I get paid when I complete my work. I submit an invoice to the lender so the borrower can get reimbursed at closing or at the first draw.

The last two I consulted on were about 6 months ago. The poor buyers had the hardest time finding contractors in our area who were willing to go through the process with them. Finally we got them closed and everyone got paid! FYI, 203k's are all over the board depending on your area and the types of homes. The problem in our area are the contractors, they really do not want to mess with them.

On the flip side, there are plenty of contractors that do like to do them. It's a bit extra paperwork, but once the loan closes and they do the work, the cashflow can be constant. They like that.

Wells Fargo is the largest 203k lender in the nation.
I haven't checked the number but I believe Bank of America is now the largest 203k lender. They took over Countrywide and Taylor-Bean.
For the most they know the program when you deal with the regional folks but it has been my experience that the local loan folks really do not know much about the 203k process.

True. Any Wells Fargo borrowers I work with are always dealing with somebody back in Minneapolis.

WF is also strict about the fees that they allow you to charge, you must stay within the published fees they allow.

I'm not sure about that either. The last two Wells Fargo jobs, I charged my normal fees. No problems.

Edit: Come to think of it, I haven't heard from a Wells Fargo borrower in a long time. Perhaps they don't refer my service any more due to my fee schedule. Maybe it was the fact they wanted me to sign a document stating that I would fulfill the role of Project Manager for each 203k. I promptly lined through that section of the contract and cited multiple published guidelines from H.U.D. stating that it is encumbent on the lender to ensure smooth progress of the 'K', not the Consultant.

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I take off in the morning at 7:00 AM for Florida to visit with my folks. While there, I'm committed to working on my reporting system - hopefully giving it a major overhaul and face-lift. Between that and having two reports to write on the flights, I won't have time to consider the 203(k) until I hit the ground running on Wednesday.

Ben, kindly let me know what your initial impressions are based upon the application and qualifications, via PM or e-mail.

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Just what does a 203(K) consultant do? It's not an inspection, I gather.

Marc

In 100 words or less. . .

1) Evaluate the property to ensure compliance with H.U.D's Minimum Property Standards. Sometimes this involves a full inspection. 3-6 hours.

2) Prepare document package detailing work to be completed on the property. 3-6 hours.

3) Dealing with confusion, mis-understandings, guiding, hand-holding etc. via phone calls, emails, and revising papework. 2-6 hours.

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Did you boys take a course to learn the paperwork & process? Or wing it?

Wing it. It's an abbreviated inspection and progress monitoring.

Marc. You control the check book

Got it. Thanks. I dunno if I can do that kinda work. Mere sight of me scares away just about every contractor in my area. The job would never get done. [;)]

Marc

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Did you boys take a course to learn the paperwork & process? Or wing it?

Wing it. It's an abbreviated inspection and progress monitoring.

Marc. You control the check book

Got it. Thanks. I dunno if I can do that kinda work. Mere sight of me scares away just about every contractor in my area. The job would never get done. [;)]

Marc

You could always beg for forgiveness... [:D]

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Did you boys take a course to learn the paperwork & process? Or wing it?

Wing it. It's an abbreviated inspection and progress monitoring.

Marc. You control the check book

Got it. Thanks. I dunno if I can do that kinda work. Mere sight of me scares away just about every contractor in my area. The job would never get done. [;)]

Marc

This is not right.

The Consultant is not the Project Manager. If you're project managing, you take on too much responsiblity and won't be profitable. Then you'll gripe that the 203k sucks and wouldn't recommend it to anybody.

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Just what does a 203(K) consultant do? It's not an inspection, I gather.

Marc

In 100 words or less. . .

1) Evaluate the property to ensure compliance with H.U.D's Minimum Property Standards. Sometimes this involves a full inspection. 3-6 hours.

2) Prepare document package detailing work to be completed on the property. 3-6 hours.

3) Dealing with confusion, mis-understandings, guiding, hand-holding etc. via phone calls, emails, and revising papework. 2-6 hours.

I'm kinda pumped, Randy... This sounds like it's right up my alley. I've always been a decent dispute resolution and project management guy. I think I'm going to jump on it, when I get back.

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Just what does a 203(K) consultant do? It's not an inspection, I gather.

Marc

In 100 words or less. . .

1) Evaluate the property to ensure compliance with H.U.D's Minimum Property Standards. Sometimes this involves a full inspection. 3-6 hours.

2) Prepare document package detailing work to be completed on the property. 3-6 hours.

3) Dealing with confusion, mis-understandings, guiding, hand-holding etc. via phone calls, emails, and revising papework. 2-6 hours.

Don't you also go back and inspect the work at several stages?

- Jim Katen, Oregon

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Just what does a 203(K) consultant do? It's not an inspection, I gather.

Marc

In 100 words or less. . .

1) Evaluate the property to ensure compliance with H.U.D's Minimum Property Standards. Sometimes this involves a full inspection. 3-6 hours.

2) Prepare document package detailing work to be completed on the property. 3-6 hours.

3) Dealing with confusion, mis-understandings, guiding, hand-holding etc. via phone calls, emails, and revising papework. 2-6 hours.

I'm kinda pumped, Randy... This sounds like it's right up my alley. I've always been a decent dispute resolution and project management guy. I think I'm going to jump on it, when I get back.

The Consultant is not the project manager...The Consultant is not the project manager...The Consultant is not the project manager...

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Just what does a 203(K) consultant do? It's not an inspection, I gather.

Marc

In 100 words or less. . .

1) Evaluate the property to ensure compliance with H.U.D's Minimum Property Standards. Sometimes this involves a full inspection. 3-6 hours.

2) Prepare document package detailing work to be completed on the property. 3-6 hours.

3) Dealing with confusion, mis-understandings, guiding, hand-holding etc. via phone calls, emails, and revising papework. 2-6 hours.

Don't you also go back and inspect the work at several stages?

- Jim Katen, Oregon

The description I've given is work completed up until closing.

Once the loan is closed and work starts, draw inspections can be performed by the Consultant but the borrower or the lender can choose to have someone else do the draws. 98% of the time, the Consultant does the draw work.

There are additional fees paid for each draw. I set those fees as well.

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Just what does a 203(K) consultant do? It's not an inspection, I gather.

Marc

In 100 words or less. . .

1) Evaluate the property to ensure compliance with H.U.D's Minimum Property Standards. Sometimes this involves a full inspection. 3-6 hours.

2) Prepare document package detailing work to be completed on the property. 3-6 hours.

3) Dealing with confusion, mis-understandings, guiding, hand-holding etc. via phone calls, emails, and revising papework. 2-6 hours.

I'm kinda pumped, Randy... This sounds like it's right up my alley. I've always been a decent dispute resolution and project management guy. I think I'm going to jump on it, when I get back.

The Consultant is not the project manager...The Consultant is not the project manager...The Consultant is not the project manager...

Got it - better yet. Thanks.

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