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Financial Institution Letter

Facilitating Real Estate-Related Transactions Affected by COVID-19

April 14, 2020  |  FIL-43-2020

Summary:

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation, Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, and the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System (collectively, the agencies) issued an interim final rule (IFR) that allows institutions supervised by the agencies to defer obtaining an appraisal or evaluation for up to 120 days after the closing of certain residential and commercial real estate loans. The agencies, with the National Credit Union Administration and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, in consultation with the state financial regulators, also issued an Interagency Statement on Appraisals and Evaluations for Real Estate Related Financial Transactions Affected by the Coronavirus (Statement). The Statement outlines existing flexibilities provided by industry appraisal standards and the agencies' appraisal regulations and highlights temporary changes to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac appraisal standards to facilitate real estate transactions.

Statement of Applicability to Institutions under $1 Billion in Total Assets: This Financial Institution Letter (FIL) applies to all FDIC-supervised institutions.

Highlights:

The agencies recognize that the National Emergency declared in connection with coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) presents challenges for individuals performing appraisals and evaluations to perform inspections and complete valuation assignments in a timely manner.

  • The IFR:
    • Defers the requirement to obtain an appraisal or evaluation for up to 120 days following the closing of a transaction for certain residential and commercial real estate transactions, excluding transactions for acquisition, development, and construction of real estate
    • States that the agencies are providing this relief to allow regulated institutions to expeditiously extend liquidity to creditworthy households and businesses in light of recent strains on the U.S. economy as a result of COVID-19.
    • Indicates regulated institutions should make best efforts to obtain a credible valuation of real property collateral before the loan closing, and otherwise underwrite loans consistent with the principles in the agencies' Standards for Safety and Soundness and Real Estate Lending Standards.
    • States that this temporary change to the appraisal rules expires on December 31, 2020.
  • The Statement:
    • Outlines existing flexibilities in the Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice and the agencies' appraisal regulations.
    • Advises that there are temporary changes to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac appraisal standards that can assist lenders during this challenging time.

Suggested Distribution:

FDIC-Supervised Banks

Suggested Routing:

Chief Executive Officer
Chief Credit Officer
Chief Risk Officer

Related Topics:

Interagency Statement on Pandemic Planning
FDIC Statement on Financial Institutions Working with Customers Affected by the Coronavirus and Regulatory and Supervisory Assistance
FDIC Appraisal Regulations
FDIC Safety and Soundness Standards
FDIC Real Estate Lending Standards

Attachments:

Paper copies of FDIC FILs may be obtained through the FDIC's Public Information Center, 3501 Fairfax Drive, E-1002, Arlington, VA 22226 (1-877-275-3342 or 703-562-2200).