The Department of Housing and Urban Development is tapping the Internet to connect lenders with the Federal Housing Administration.

Starting this month, lenders can use the system, dubbed FHA Connection, for underwriting services and credit verifications. HUD, which oversees the FHA, expects to expand the system this year to include refinancing and reverse mortgage support.

Once fully in place, the service will "provide our lenders with easy and direct on-line access to the information they need for loan processing, and put it in a format that is easy to read and understand," said FHA Commissioner Nicolas Retsinas.

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