FHA Appraiser Tip: Strapped water heaters & garage doors in Sacramento

There are many requirements for a property to qualify for an FHA loan. It’s important to understand all the little things if you are considering getting an FHA loan, selling your Sacramento area house or listing a property for a client. If you didn’t know, FHA loans comprised 28% of the market in 2010 in the Sacramento area, so details like this are very important.

In this video I take one minute to discuss the importance of water heater straps and self-closing garage doors. You can view other videos and FHA content here. Keep me posted if you have any questions.

If you have any real estate appraisal, valuation consulting,ย or property tax appeal needs, contact me at 916.595.3735, www.LundquistCompany.com or via Facebook.


    • says

      Thanks so much, Anne. It would be nice if older homes could be grandfathered in, but FHA’s safety lense doesn’t let old houses escape for issues like this. It’s not a hard fix, so that is good. The same would go for something like a strapped water heater. The age or design of the house doesn’t change the FHA standard. I hope you’re having a tremendous weekend!!!

  1. Heidi P says

    Hi Ryan, I have a question that I cannot seem to find the answer to. The home is built in 1951. I have a water heater in a hall closet that is directly on floor with no pan or elevation. It has 1 strap. Also there is a bedroom located in center of home not along exterior walls (recorded and legal) with no windows but 2 doors and one door right in front of main door. What are your suggestions on these two things?

    • says

      Hi Heidi, thanks for checking in. My suggestions? Make sure you know what local code says for water heaters in the county your property is located in. FHA will want to see the water heater abides by code for that particular county or city. Code will vary from place to place, so I cannot really say anything definitely on that. I would call FHA on the bedroom issue. Obviously if the room is located in the center of the home, there is no way it could have a window. Just make sure your local FHA Home Ownership Center (HOC) says two doors are adequate for egress with this situation. It’s really not too common to come across a room like this, huh. You can contact FHA directly about this question at 800-CALL-FHA. They should be able to give you a pretty quick answer on the egress issue and your local county can clue you in to details on what code is for water heaters (that may even be online on the county/city website). Despite giving no direct answers, I hope this was helpful nonetheless. ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. Mike says

    Thanks for the great site Ryan; it’s been a great reference clarifying why the home I’m buying didn’t pass its FHA inspection (things like, WHERE do the CO detectors need to be placed?).

    Quick question: I installed a spring hinge on my garage door and tensioned it as tight as it will go – the door closes, but it doesn’t clear the latch (it shuts and the door knob latch slides into place, but not quite far enough to “click”). Does the door have to latch all the way, or is just being shut enough? Debating whether I need to come back later and install a second one before scheduling the reinspection).

    • says

      Hi Mike. Thank you for the kind words and for stopping by. There isn’t any specific FHA standard I’m aware of that says the door has to make the “click” sound. It’s really the appraiser’s call. Personally, when I call for a door to be self-closing, it needs to shut as it should. Sometimes doors do require two self-closing hinges in order to do the job right. I see this quite regularly.

      I recently had a contractor come back to a property to install a second hinge, and he was livid as I waited in the garage. It felt a bit like middle school as he was flashing me dirty looks. ๐Ÿ™‚ It was too bad he had to waste time coming back, but the original appraisal was very clear that the door needed to be self-closing. I’m not sure why he felt the original repair was adequate when the door wasn’t shutting on its own.

      In short, in your case it sounds like it would be prudent to install a second hinge to ensure the door does shuts as it should.

      Let me know if you have any questions. Thanks Mike.


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