Put on your FHA Goggles: What does it take for a Sacramento area property to meet FHA standards?

FHA loans have dominated the local market in the Sacramento area lately, haven’t they? This is why many buyers and sellers are paying careful attention to FHA guidelines. I get calls all the time from concerned sellers, prospective buyers, and real estate agents about FHA compliance issues. The question is usually, “will _________ be an issue for an FHA loan?”

FHA has a very specific set of minimum requirements. If you are planning to sell your house and you think the most likely buyer is going to be using an FHA loan, then strap on your “FHA goggles” to view your property like HUD does. Or if you are purchasing a house, it’s important to be aware of condition issues that may impact qualification for an FHA loan.

What does it take for a property to meet FHA minimum guidelines? FHA is primarily concerned that everything in a house functions properly and that there are no health and safety issues. FHA continually says, “Soundness, Safety & Security” as their motto. It’s okay if there is some deferred maintenance, but if there is any issue that may pose a threat to health, safety, soundness or security, then it needs to be solved. Examples might include chipping paint, mold, missing appliances, an inoperable HVAC, a broken water heater, dangling wires, trip hazards, etc… You can see a more detailed list of specific requirements in a previous post.

Quiz Time: Now that you have just a bit of information about FHA compliance, take a look at the image below. What do you see that might pose a safety risk and be unacceptable to FHA? Comment below.

Keep me in the loop if you have any questions or if you need to hire my “FHA goggles” to help you make a decision when selling or buying a house. And don’t worry, I don’t actually wear goggles like this on inspections. 🙂 You can reach me at 916.595.3735, on Facebook, or ryan@LundquistCompany.com.


    • says

      Bryan, I can mail you a pair if you’d like. 🙂 The picture is just for fun. I’m not some sort of fashion guru by any stretch, but I’d never actually wear something like this on an inspection.

      • says

        Thanks Ryan. I think I have some goggle like that somewhere at my house left over from high school science class! It is a clever photo and goes well with your blog post.
        Is the photo of the stairs from one of your FHA appraisals? I occasionally see stairs for decks and patios that are missing handrails altogether.

        • says

          That’s funny. They do have the look of High School science class. I actually love woodworking and I used these goggles before I upgraded to a different style (one that does not cause so much sweat).

          This photo is of a random non-FHA property, but the property will be marketed in an FHA market, so the safety hazard will need to be cured. A toddler could easily fall through the open space. No rail is even worse.

  1. says

    I seem to get the most questions about chipping and peeling paint. I am going to be making up an FHA “cheat sheet” for realtors so they can have it handy when listing a home. They will know what items will be more important than others. As always, informative post.


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