H.R. 1852: Expanding American Homeownership Act of 2007
September 18, 2007
On Tuesday September 18th the House considered H.R. 1852: Expanding American Homeownership Act of 2007. This legislation makes it easier to obtain a mortgage from the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and will help ease the difficulties that some homeowners in the sub-prime mortgage market are experiencing.
The FHA was established in order to provide affordable mortgage loans for first-time home buyers. H.R. 1852 increases the FHA loan limit so that families in high cost housing areas, like Boston, have access to an FHA loan. Such loans are not available in many higher-cost areas of the country because the average cost of a home is too high. As a result, some are forced to turn to the sub-prime market and higher interest loans in order to purchase a home.
This legislation lowers the down payment requirement for those who can afford to pay a monthly mortgage, but do not have enough for a down payment. In certain circumstances, no down payment will be required. This legislation increases funding for housing counseling loan programs and authorizes that up to $300 million a year in new FHA surpluses be directed to an affordable housing fund, instead of getting sent back to the General Treasury. H.R. 1852 also directs the FHA to provide mortgages to qualified, higher risk borrowers without charging them excessive fees.
I voted YES. H.R. 1852 passed in the House with strong bipartisan support.
Contact: Alison M. Mills (617) 621-6208
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