The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) recently announced the next step in its Real Estate-Owned (REO) Initiative, targeted to hardest-hit metropolitan areas “” Atlanta, Chicago, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Phoenix and parts of Florida. This next step allows prequalified investors to submit applications to demonstrate financial capacity, experience and specific plans for purchasing pools of Fannie Mae foreclosed properties with the intention of renting those properties for a specific number of years. The sales announcements will be sent to prequalified investors and those that post a security deposit and sign a confidentiality agreement will gain access to detailed information about the properties. At that stage, interested investors must submit a comprehensive application, which will be reviewed by an outside firm. Only investors who are qualified through this rigorous process will be eligible to bid.