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FHA Step Situation

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Susie Seibert

Junior Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2005
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Michigan
Hiya everyone...

Happy heatwave to you mid-west folks!

I did an FHA appraisal the other day and the folks had a new addition on the house. There were 2 new entrances that had only concrete blocks stacked up for steps. They intend to add decks but are outta cash. I stated it needed at the very least permanent steps for safety reasons...the owner called just now and said he was told if he screwed the doors shut so that they could not be used for entry and exit purposes, that this would be okay. There are 2 other 1st floor entrances with regular porches plus a screened porch with a 3rd exit.

Is this correct? Would FHA approve this solution?

Many thanks as always.
 

George Ellerman

Senior Member
Joined
Feb 21, 2005
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Ohio
Hiya everyone...

Happy heatwave to you mid-west folks!

I did an FHA appraisal the other day and the folks had a new addition on the house. There were 2 new entrances that had only concrete blocks stacked up for steps. They intend to add decks but are outta cash. I stated it needed at the very least permanent steps for safety reasons...the owner called just now and said he was told if he screwed the doors shut so that they could not be used for entry and exit purposes, that this would be okay. There are 2 other 1st floor entrances with regular porches plus a screened porch with a 3rd exit.

Is this correct? Would FHA approve this solution?


Many thanks as always.

If the entrance is permanently sealed so as to deny ingress or egress you would be ok.
 

Susie Seibert

Junior Member
Joined
Mar 22, 2005
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Michigan
Not to beat a dead horse...but do you think screwing the door shut at the top would qualify it for "permanently sealed"? Do you think they should removed the concrete blocks as well to show that intent?
 

Webbed Feet

Elite Member
Joined
Feb 11, 2005
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Canada
Ms. Seibert,

Ahhhhhhhh ... gosh.... How many steps? What is the exact height from grade to door sill that is being discussed? Why won't a good safety railing work? While we are at it, please supply, or find, a definition of "permanent" regarding steps for me? Why are you not asking the jurisdictional authority for that location these questions?

Webbed.
 

Kevin A. Spellman

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 30, 2003
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Massachusetts
I experienced a similar situation with three doors only for my subject. Here are the before and after shots. I called for it to be repaired, a VA assignment.
 

Mr Rex

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2004
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
North Carolina
Stacked concrete blocks are personal property and not part of the Real Estate.:)
 

stefan olafson

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 2, 2003
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
North Dakota
I agree with webbed! Have them put up a good quality sturdy hand rail. I don't think there is any specifics in FHA docs spelling out what a set of steps has to be made our of? I've seen metal mobile home type steps that have worked just fine, no problems with safety and you can use them.
 

Jim Bartley

Senior Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Virginia
So the doors are sealed and if there is a fire they can't use that door for an exit? Brilliant!!
 

JSmith43

Elite Member
Joined
May 5, 2003
Professional Status
Certified General Appraiser
State
California
Stacked concrete blocks are personal property and not part of the Real Estate.:)


Sometimes, just sometimes, you're a friggen genious, Rex. I'm serious.
He got in a good joke and pointed out the frivolty of the situation.

A hand rail, duck?? Below par performance for our fine feathered friend.

Mortgagee letter 2005-ML-48 has the answer. Report what you see, don't make judgements, don't make railing work orders, basically, don't make trouble. Let the UW and home inspector make the trouble.

I personally would say how high the pile of blocks are and say that a practical solution might be to block off that exit until hell freezes over, until the owner adds real finished stairs, or until after funding of the loan:rof:

Seriously, a good question, Susie. Some good answers. I just happen to feel my answer is best, this time, so far:)
 

Jim Onderisin

Senior Member
Joined
Sep 15, 2003
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Illinois
Sometimes, just sometimes, you're a friggen genious, Rex. I'm serious.
He got in a good joke and pointed out the frivolty of the situation.

A hand rail, duck?? Below par performance for our fine feathered friend.

Mortgagee letter 2005-ML-48 has the answer. Report what you see, don't make judgements, don't make railing work orders, basically, don't make trouble. Let the UW and home inspector make the trouble.

I personally would say how high the pile of blocks are and say that a practical solution might be to block off that exit until hell freezes over, until the owner adds real finished stairs, or until after funding of the loan:rof:

Seriously, a good question, Susie. Some good answers. I just happen to feel my answer is best, this time, so far:)

I agree...just report the facts and let the UNDERWRITER make the determination of what they want done. Don't we have anything more important to think about? God bless us all.
 
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