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Can you refinance mortgage on condo not FHA approved?

My reverse mortgage refinancing was declined because my condo community is not FHA-approved. Is it possible for me to refinance or obtain a line of credit on my condo?

Michael Jensen, Mortgage and Finance Guru
, Mortgage and Finance Guru

If your condominium community is not approved by the FHA it will be very difficult, if not impossible, for you to refinance your mortgage with another reverse mortgage. I am not aware of any lenders that offer reverse mortgages on condos that are located in developments that are not FHA-approved. One point to highlight about the FHA certification process for condominium communities is that condos owned as second homes are considered owner-occupied so that could potentially mean that your community is above the 51% owner-occupied (non-renter) threshold required for FHA approval. If you believe this is the case, you should contact your homeowners association (HOA) board about having the community certified as FHA-approved, although that can be a relatively time-consuming process. You can use the FHA search tool to determine if your community was previously approved by the FHA, which can streamline the process.

Some lenders may provide a regular (forward) mortgage on condos located in non FHA-approved communities, which would allow you to refinance your current reverse mortgage and potentially access the equity in your property. Most lenders, however, require that at least 51% of the condos in a community are owner-occupied, so this option is also challenging. One step I recommend is that you contact your HOA board and ask how individuals who recently bought or refinance condos in your community were able to arrange financing.

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About the author

Michael Jensen, Mortgage and Finance Guru

Michael is the co-founder of FREEandCLEAR. Michael possesses extensive knowledge about mortgages and finance and has been writing about mortgages for nearly a decade. His work has been featured in leading national and industry publications. More about Michael

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