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By Sean Stephens

What is an FHA Case Number?

What is an FHA Case Number and Why is it Important? 

Many have heard this terminology, but many are unsure of why FHA case numbers are issued and how important they are to closing on an FHA loan.

FHA Case Number Basics

An FHA Case Number is a unique 10-digit number assigned to a loan through Case Number Assignment on FHA Connection. A loan assigned a number is called a case.

This unique case number is required for every FHA loan and it is assigned whenever someone applies for an FHA refinance or an FHA loan to purchase a home.

The first three numbers in the FHA case number are state or area specific while the last 3 digits represent the Section(s) of the Act under which insurance was issued for each home, but are seldom the Sections of the Act themselves.  The case number can be seen at the top of each page on the FHA appraisal that was completed .

The buyer applying for an FHA loan and the property the buyer is contracted to purchase are assigned an FHA case number. The FHA case number can be transferred from one borrower to another but cannot be transferred from the property.

Let’s clarify with the following example:

Buyer #1 applies for FHA financing after his contract is accepted on Property #1 and is then assigned an FHA case number. If Buyer #1 decides to not purchase the property, they would then need to apply for a new case number when purchasing Property #2.

However, if another buyer wants to purchase Property #1, they would only need to have the case number for that property transferred to them.

On a side note, provided different lenders are involved, this can also cause delays with getting the case numbers transferred from the previous lender to the current one handling the financing.

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If, after six months, the loan has not closed the case number will be cancelled. In addition, when FHA institutes changes to the program, such as increases to mortgage insurance, the changes would only take effect on FHA case numbers assigned on or after the date of the announced program changes.

All case numbers assigned before that date would still be underwritten within program guidelines prior to the changes, as long as those loans close within six months.

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