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FHFA Celebrates National Homeownership Month

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Published: 6/20/2017

June is National Homeownership Month.  The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) joins the housing community in supporting opportunities for individuals and families to become homeowners.  So how is FHFA involved in the homeownership process?

What's FHFA's Role?

FHFA was established by the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008.  The Agency is responsible for the supervision, regulation, housing mission oversight, and the conservatorships of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.  Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac support the secondary mortgage market by buying mortgages from banks and other lenders and packaging them into tradeable mortgage-backed securities that investors can purchase.

FHFA is also responsible for supervision, regulation, and housing mission oversight of the 11 Federal Home Loan Banks (FHLBanks) and the Office of Finance, which act as a funding source for a variety of member financial institutions.  The FHLBanks are member-owned cooperative entities which act as a funding source for a variety of member financial institutions.

Together, these regulated entities provide more than $5.8 trillion in funding for the U.S. mortgage markets and financial institutions ranging from credit unions to commercial banks.  FHFA's responsibility is to make sure these entities operate in a financially safe and sound manner so that they serve as a dependable source of liquidity and funding for housing finance and community investment.

How it Works

FHFA works to fulfill its statutory responsibilities in a number of ways.  Some of FHFA's activities involve conducting supervisory examinations and creating rules and regulations that lay the foundation for how the regulated entities operate.

However, there are some activities that are more visible to homeowners and those in the housing industry.  For example, FHFA oversees the Home Affordable Refinance Program – commonly known as HARP – which helps homeowners refinance their mortgages.  Millions have either lowered their monthly payment, interest rate, or shortened their loan term through this program since its inception in 2009. FHFA's House Price Index measures price changes on single-family properties and is widely used by consumers, realtors, researchers and many others.  And our reports on Foreclosure Prevention and Refinance activities provide useful data about how Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are keeping people in their homes and helping borrowers. 

As conservator, FHFA also seeks to decrease risk to taxpayers by maximizing the role of private funds in the mortgage market while also maintaining credit availability and foreclosure prevention activities.  

In short, FHFA plays an extensive role in keeping mortgage markets functional, keeping homeowners in their homes, and helping provide opportunities to prospective homeowners.

Tagged: Homeowners-Homebuyers; Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP); House Price Index (HPI); Foreclosure Prevention Report; Refinance Report

By: Ryan Abercombie

Summer Intern
Office of Congressional Affairs and Communications


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