On April 15, 2017, HUD REAC released “Uniform Physical Condition Standards (UPCS) Inspection Services Purchase Order Terms and Conditions,” which is essentially a set of business rules for HUD REAC Inspectors. Much of this document deals with intricate details known to REAC Inspectors about what processes must occur when conducting inspections. The majority of the information in this document has little or no impact on the Multifamily Housing management industry, but some of it does. For the convenience of our readers, we have highlighted the document linked above, and will summarize the changes here as well:
In Section 7 of the document, there are considerable changes to Quality Assurance procedures and methods. This includes new and more varied types of Quality Assurance inspections, including essentially a repeat of a REAC Inspection to provide a comparison against the original results, which is referred to as both an Independent Quality Assurance (IQA) Inspection, and a repeat inspection called a Quality Control Inspection (QCI). Most interestingly, HUD REAC is now offering discretionary performance “bonuses” to inspectors who are found to have “excellent” performance. This is essentially a premium paid to contract inspectors if they are found to be within 90% of the QCI or IQA comparison. This does mean that there is an incentive for inspectors to be more accurate, which may result in a higher volume of deficiencies.
What does this mean to you?
The changes to HUD REAC scheduling guidelines are welcome, as there have been inconsistencies in how inspections are scheduled, and the rules listed for inspectors appear to be right on target with a solid professional approach. In this document there is additional discussion about HUD REAC Inspectors receiving more training, which is also an excellent idea. But all of this increased level of professionalism and an increased level of focus on accuracy and quality of inspector performance, does mean that the industry needs to be more attentive to new and old requirements and stop relying on what happened on the last inspection as a gauge.
As we say at each our training events, REAC Inspections are not meant to be a learning experience; they are meant to be an inspection to determine what you already know and how you are performing. Just as with the rest of HUD and LIHTC Compliance, there are defined rules and regulations, and it is vital that everyone in your organization is intimately familiar with them - it is not good enough to simply have an attractive property, you need to make sure that you are following the rules as well.
It's more important than ever to receive up to date REAC training and prepare for your next inspeciton wtih a comprehensive Pre-REAC Inspection from the industry's best REAC consultants. Check out our current training session schedule or contact us for information about Private Training and Pre-REAC Inspection options.