Servicing Guide

Published June 10, 2020

The Servicing Guide is organized into parts that reflect how lenders generally categorize various aspects of their business relationship with Fannie Mae. To begin browsing, select from any of the sections below. You may also download the entire Servicing Guide in PDF format.

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Fannie Mae Property Preservation Matrix and Reference Guide April 2019 (Section 7: Utilities)

Section 7: Utilities 

Utility Transfers and Shut Off 

Utility Services

Utility Transfers and Shut Off

When utilities (electricity/gas/water/other) are shared with another unit or electricity is required to operate a sump pump, the servicer must transfer the utility(ies) into its name within fifteen (15) calendar days of initial securing. The Utility Transfers and Shut Off Allowable includes verification utilities are  disconnected/transferred/connected and wait time to meet with utility company, if necessary.

Water is required to be shut off curbside and at the main interior water supply. If it is not possible to shut off the water at the curb due to damages, shut water off at the main interior water supply and utilize the Plumbing Services Allowable to repair shut off curbside. Refer to Winterization / Rewinterization in Section 5: Initial Securing and Initial Services within this Property Preservation Guide for further guidance.

The servicer must have a procedure in place to handle difficulties with utility transfers to ensure utilities are activated when required.

Utility Services

When the servicer transfers utilities (according to the Utility Transfer of this section), Fannie Mae requires the servicer to pay utility bills timely and in accordance with the utility service guidelines. The servicer may only utilize allowable dollars to pay for any municipal utility service and for any electric service where the servicer requires electricity due to a shared service, shared wall or sump pump. Fannie Mae will not reimburse the servicer for fees resulting from the servicer’s untimely action or inaction.

Utility Services Initial

When the servicer transfers utilities (according to the Utility Transfer of this section), the servicer may initially encounter application fees and/or unpaid fees left by the borrower or previous occupant. The servicer is required to negotiate any excessive fees with the utility company down to the lowest amount possible. The servicer must pay the initial payment or submit an over allowable bid if outside the allowable threshold.

When to Submit a Bid

Refer to Section 2: Technology and Photos within this Property Preservation Guide for bid submission guidance and include the following:

•    The utility invoice showing the breakdown of fees/services. 
•    Any documentation of previous utility service communication. 

Utility Services Monthly

After the servicer transfers utilities (according to the Utility Transfer of this section), the servicer must pay utility bills timely (typically monthly) or submit an over allowable bid if outside the allowable threshold.

When to Submit a Bid

Refer to Section 2: Technology and Photos within this Property Preservation Guide for bid submission guidance and include the following:

•    The utility invoice showing the breakdown of fees/services. 
•    Any documentation of previous utility service communication. 

What To Do If

If…

Then…

Utility service(s) is shared with other units in a condominium, 

Transfer and maintain the utility(ies) for the unit in the servicer’s name.

The property has shared utilities (e.g., townhome, condos, etc.) or has a fire sprinkler system in a state that is known to freeze,

Transfer and maintain the utility(ies) that supply the heat in the servicer’s name. Set the heat on the thermostat to 55 degrees. When the heat source requires repair or is missing, submit bids via HomeTracker.

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