In a measure to help bring stability to home values and accelerate the sale of vacant properties, HUD takes action to speed resale of foreclosed properties to new owners. HUD hopes to improve home values and conditions in communities where foreclosure activity is high. HUD Secretary Shaun Donovan announced last month that a temporary policy will  expand access to FHA mortgage insurance and allow for the quick resale of foreclosed properties. As part of the  Obama administration's commitment to addressing foreclosure, $2 billion in the Neighborhood Stabilization Program grants will be given to local communities and nonprofit housing developers to combat the effects of vacant and abandoned homes.

Currently, the FHA prohibits insuring a mortgage on a home owned by the seller for less than 90 days. This temporary waiver will give FHA borrowers access to a broader array of recently foreclosed properties. In today's market, FHA research finds that acquiring, rehabilitating and the reselling these properties to prospective homeowners often takes less than 90 days.

This new policy change will allow homebuyers to use FHA-insured financing to purchase HUD-owned properties, bank-owned properties, or properties resold through private sales. This will help homes to resale quickly and thus stabilize real estate prices and help to revitalize neighborhoods and communities.

This new policy waiver will take effect on February 1, 2010 and is effective for one year, unless otherwise extended or withdrawn by the FHA Commissioner. To view specific conditions and other details of this new temporary policy, the details are available on HUD's website.