HUD HOC Reference Guide
FHA Connection & Error Messages
The FHA Homeownership Centers are only one part of the mortgage insurance process. To obtain HUD/FHA mortgage insurance, lenders must have access to the FHA Connection or other acceptable system.
FHA Connection is an interactive system on the Internet that gives approved HUD/FHA lenders real-time access to several HUD/FHA systems for the purpose of originating loans. It is mandatory for Direct Endorsement lenders to process case number assignments, inspector assignments, appraisal information, receive insurance and retrieve loan data electronically. Lenders must be able to use The FHA Connection's different functions for the different phases of the FHA insurance application process.
HUD/FHA will not accept telephone or mail requests for case numbers, case status, lender transfers, appraisal reassignments, duplicate MICs, borrower & address changes, or any other actions that can be performed through the FHA Connection by the lender.
The FHA Connection has a host of other features. Below are some of the more popular functions that have been added.
Underwriter Activity, under the Origination Reports menu, provides a report of underwriter reviews for active underwriters employed by direct endorsement lenders. This includes the lender's automated underwriting system (AUS), if applicable. Reviews are performed for post endorsement technical review cases and test (preclosing) cases.
HUD-approved Title I and Title II non-supervised lenders, non-supervised mortgages, and loan correspondents (collectively referred to as "lenders") with fiscal years ending on or after September 30, 2002 are required to submit their financial audits electronically. This is done via the Lender Assessment subsystem (LASS) in the FHA Connection. For more details, please refer to The LASS FAQ. The annual certification form is available electronically by going to the Institution Profile in LASS in the FHA Connection. The same page will show a "Pay Online" button if the re-certification fee is due. (Refer to Mortgagee Letter 2005-24, Handbook 4060.1 Chapter 4 and the FHAC Guide)
FHA Connection Error Messages
- When requesting a case number if you get an error message that states: "Request placed on hold pending field office processing" or "Duplicate Address", wait 24-hours and go into Holds Tracking to retrieve your case number. The case number will remain available in Holds Tracking for 72-hours. You may also use Case Query to check on the case number. Case Query is not just for querying known case numbers. When a case number is not known, you can:
a. choose the field office.
b. enter one of the options: name, address or SSN
c. click send. You should then get one or more selections to choose from.
Note, as of April 18, 2011, FHAC will automatically cancel any uninsured case number where there has been no activity for six months since the last action except for certain noted actions--refer to ML 11-10.
- FHA Connection validates the name, Social Security Number, and Date of Birth for all borrowers. The validation is done at the time of case number assignment via the Validate Borrower/Address for Case Number Assignment screen. Users are required to enter both address and borrower information. The borrower validation process can take from 5 to 10 seconds, please be patient. If all information validates, the user will be presented with the Case Number Assignment screen. If any information is not validated, the user will have the option of correcting the information. If the user verifies that all entered borrower information is correct, they should choose to "Override" the validation. This "Override" will place the loan in Holds Tracking. The information will then be validated overnight with the Social Security Administration.
If the loan is placed in Holds Tracking by 4 p.m. the user can check Holds Tracking the next business day to see if a case number has been assigned. If the loan is placed in Holds Tracking after 4 p.m., the user will have to wait two business days to see if a case number has been issued. If borrower information is changed after a case number has been issued, the new information must be re- validated. If all information validates, the process will proceed normally. If information is not validated, the user should choose to "Override" the validation. This will place a Case Warning on the loan. The information will then be validated overnight with the Social Security Administration. If the Social Security Administration confirms the information is valid, the Case Warning will be removed.
- UFMIP Due - Check ADP code. Condos (734/731) and 203(k) s (702) do not pay UFMIP. If this is a streamline refinance the "rollover" from the previous case number may not be credited to your new case number. If you have documentation stating the required UFMIP has been received but is still not showing up on the FHA Connection, then you need to contact your representative in Washington for assistance at (202) 708-9906.
- If the message states "Zip Code does not exist in field office", verify the property is located in the field office jurisdiction for which you are requesting a case number. Go to the FHA Approval Lists and select Zip Codes, which will give you the correct field office and county code. When you input the county code and it does not match the county as listed on the mortgage note, go to "Borrower/Address Change" and enter the correct county code. If you have tried to perform the borrower/address, change and get the message: "Duplicate Address", please contact the appropriate HOC.
- If the message states "Address Mismatch", the pre-CHUMS information on the Single Family Insurance System (SFIS) is inconsistent with the current information and no new case number can be assigned until corrected. Please contact the appropriate HOC.
Other Helpful Hints
- If you mistakenly order a case number and want to change the field to be a refinance, select Case Number Assignment and then Update Existing Case. To obtain your netting amount, go to Case Processing and then Refinance Authorization.
- If you do not know the 10th digit of the old FHA case number, you can check in Case Query for the 10th digit or enter "X" as the last digit.
- To obtain an inspector or an appraiser assignment, you must have their ID Number available when you order a new case number. The ID number can be obtained by clicking on FHA Approval Lists and selecting Appraiser or Inspector.
- Condo ID must be input at the time of establishing a new case with and ADP code of 731 or 734.
If you have any technical questions you can email FHA Connection. Check out FHA Connection Frequently Guide for some solutions to common problems. Download the Quick Start Guide for the FHA Connection.
Reference: 4155.2, Chapter 3, 4060.1, Chapter 4, ML 10-20, ML 10-33, ML 11-10