Up-Front Mortgage Insurance (UFMI) Definition

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Up-Front Mortgage Insurance (UFMI) Definition

What Is Up-Front Mortgage Insurance (UFMI)?

Up-front mortgage insurance is a charge that is normally collected at the time the loan is first arranged for Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans.

Even though they are comparable, private mortgage insurance (PMI), which is a monthly fee charged by a traditional private mortgage lender when a buyer’s down payment on a property is less than 20% of the purchase price, is not exactly the same. Mortgage upfront fees go into a fund that is used to assist organizations, like the FHA, in insuring loans for certain borrowers.

Key Takeaways

  • Up-front mortgage insurance (UFMI) is an additional insurance premium of 1.75% that is collected on Federal Housing Administration (FHA) loans.
  • This insurance money protects the lender in case the borrower defaults on his mortgage payments.
  • UFMI can be paid at the time the loan closes or rolled into the mortgage payments. It is in addition to ongoing mortgage insurance premium payments.

Understanding Up-Front Mortgage Insurance (UFMI)

FHA mortgage insurance serves the same goal as PMI: to safeguard the lender. Borrowers who have less equity in their houses have a greater chance of defaulting on their loans since they have less to lose by leaving and allowing the bank to take possession of their property. With mortgage insurance, the insurer will assist your lender in recovering its losses if you stop making mortgage payments and leave your house.

In comparison to conventional loans, FHA loans offer less onerous income and credit standards as well as reduced down payment requirements that may be as low as 3.5% of the cost of a property. Therefore, up-front mortgage insurance is necessary for these loans and is paid at closing.

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The cost of upfront mortgage insurance has been 1.75% of the basic loan amount since 2015. UFMIP for FHA Streamline Refinance Loans is 0.55%. When your loan is closed, you may choose to pay this sum in cash, but most borrowers decide to add it to their overall mortgage balance instead.

It’s a good idea to pay the full amount of up-front mortgage insurance (UFMI) from the beginning if you can. It will end up costing much more in the long run if you opt to roll it into your loan.

Borrowers must also pay recurring mortgage insurance payments (MIP), which may be anywhere between 0.45% and 1.05% of the entire mortgage, in addition to the UFMI. Until your loan-to-value ratio is low enough—that is, until you have paid off a certain portion of your mortgage—you will be required to pay this mortgage insurance. There is less danger for the lender should you default on the loan when your equity is large enough (in the case of an FHA loan, the proportion is 22%). The insurance is no longer necessary at this time. Mortgage insurance payments must be made every month for five years for borrowers with loans that are longer than 15 years. The 78% loan-to-value ratio is the sole criterion if your mortgage is for less than 15 years.

Direct payments for upfront mortgage insurance premiums are made to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), and the automated collection service of the U.S. Department of the Treasury is responsible for collecting them. They are placed in escrow.

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HUD processes electronic collections using a secure Internet collectionportal. This computerized data collecting service:

  • Satisfies agency and business partner demands for electronic alternatives by providing the ability to complete forms, make payments, and submit queries electronically via the Internet.
  • Enables business partners and consumer users to access their payment accounts from any computer with Internet access.
  • enables government agencies to quickly and effectively collect and process payments

Special Considerations

Many consumers are unaware that if they pay their upfront mortgage insurance fees all at once and sell their property during the first five to seven years of ownership, the costs may often be repaid on a pro-rated basis. In other words, even years after the event, they could be eligible for a sizable return.

After five years, a homeowner who acquired their FHA loan before June 2013 is entitled for a reimbursement and the cancellation of their upfront mortgage insurance cost. All payments must have been paid on time, and the homeowner must have 22% equity in the house. In order to refinance into a conventional loan, homeowners with FHA loans issued after June 2013 must have a current loan-to-value ratio of at least 80%.

Tips to Avoid PayingUp-Front Mortgage Insurance (UFMI)

Homebuyers have a few options for avoiding paying upfront mortgage insurance:

  • Request a traditional mortgage loan. For traditional loans with a loan-to-value ratio of 80% or less, mortgage lenders won’t demand upfront mortgage insurance. Both initial property purchases and refinancing fall within the purview of this criteria.
  • Lay down a 20% deposit. When a down payment for a property is equivalent to 20% or more, a mortgage lender will not assume as much risk; as a result, a homeowner is not anticipated to pay for mortgage insurance.
  • Purchase a second mortgage. To cover the 20% required to avoid mortgage insurance, a 5% down payment would call for a 15% second mortgage, while a 10% down payment would call for a 10% second mortgage.
  • Ask the seller for assistance. If a seller has equity, they may choose to use a second mortgage to finance a part of the buying price. You will be able to avoid mortgage insurance thanks to your 10% down payment and the seller’s 10% second mortgage.
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Is UFMI Refundable?

Except when used to refinance to a new FHA-insured mortgage within three years of the original loan, the Upfront Mortgage Insurance (USMI) fee is not refundable.

How Is the FHA UFMI Premium Calculated?

A mortgage must pay a UFMI premium to the FHA of 1.75% of the loan amount. 1.75% of $200,000, or $3,500, would be the first loan amount. As a result, after accounting for the UFMI premium, the mortgage amount would rise to $203,500.

Can the UFMI Be Paid in Cash, or Can It Be Financed Into the Loan Payments?

The UFMI premium may be paid in cash or financed into the loan, but it must be paid in whole, not in two halves, in any case. The total amount of cash settlement obligations includes any cash payments made for UFMIP amounts.

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