Calabria Seeks To End Conservatorship By Jan. 20

Federal Housing Finance Agency Director Mark Calabria is trying to pull Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac out of conservatorship before the Trump Administration ends on January 20, the Wall Street Journal reported. Mark Calabria, a libertarian economist who heads the Federal Housing Finance Agency, has made it a priority to return Fannie and Freddie to private hands, a goal shared by Mr. Mnuchin. How that is done could affect the cost and availability of mortgages backed by the companies, which guarantee roughly half of the $11 trillion in existing home loans. Completing the complex process before President Trump’s term ends on Jan. 20 is a long shot, and President-elect Joe Biden is considered unlikely to continue the effort. But Messrs.…

FHFA Sets Multifamily Fannie, Freddie Caps

The 2021 multifamily loan purchase caps for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac will be $140 billion – or $70 billion for each Fannie and Freddie, the Federal Housing Finance Agency announced Tuesday. The $140 billion will support the multifamily market, and at least 50 percent of Fannie and Freddie’s multifamily loans are required to be used for affordable housing. “Multifamily housing is a critical component of the nation’s housing supply and especially of its affordable housing stock.  As we continue to address the shortage of affordable housing, especially amid the COVID crisis, FHFA will keep a close eye on the multifamily caps to ensure that they are sufficient and serve to increase the supply of affordable housing but do not…

Freddie Mac CEO David Brickman Resigns

Freddie Mac chief executive officer David Brickman notified the company this week that he is stepping down from the role he has held since just last year, Freddie announced Friday in an SEC filing. Brickman’s resignation will be effective January 8. Freddie gave no reason for Brickman’s decision in the filing, though a spokesman told the Wall Street Journalthat it was a “personal decision.” The SEC filing said, “The Board will also be launching a search for a new CEO for Freddie Mac.” Following the notification, Freddie appointed Michael T. Hutchins interim president, effective Monday. Hutchins, 64, has served as Freddie Mac’s Executive Vice President – Investments and Capital Markets since January 2015, and prior to that, he served as Senior…

FHFA Approves GSE Use Of Classic FICO

The Federal Housing Finance Agency announced Tuesday that it had validated and approved the use of the Classic FICO credit score model by Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae as work continues to assess adopting more modern credit score tools. In February, FHFA sought input on new credit score models, but Tuesday’s announcement gives FHFA time to sort through the different models. FHFA said it expects Fannie and Freddie will take “an additional year to complete the validation and approval process of the remaining credit score models submitted in response to the solicitation.” “The validation and approval of Classic FICO by the Enterprises allows them to continue supporting the mortgage market while assessing more modern credit score models that were submitted…

FHFA Extends GSEs Ability To Buy Loans In Forbearance

The Federal Housing Finance Agency announced Wednesday that it will extend Fannie and Freddie’s ability to purchase some single-family mortgages in forbearance to continue to support the liquidity of mortgage lenders during the pandemic. FHFA originally put the policy in place in April in response to borrowers seeking mortgage forbearance shortly after closing on loans – and before the lender could deliver the loan to Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. Prior to the change, loans in forbearance were ineligible to be sold under Fannie and Freddie requirements, placing the borrower and the lender in jeopardy. The latest extension covers loans originated through November 30. “Eligible loans will continue to be priced to mitigate the heightened risk of loss to the…

FHFA Proposes New Fannie, Freddie Product Rule

The Federal Housing Finance Agency on Monday announced a new rule that would require Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to provide advance notice to FHFA of new activities and obtain prior approval before launching new products. The rule, which was announced by FHFA Director Mark Calabria at the Mortgage Bankers Association’s annual meeting, “establishes revised criteria for determining whether a new activity requires notice to FHFA and for determining if that activity is a new product that merits public notice and comment.”  “The proposed rule will enhance the safety and soundness of the secondary mortgage market by ensuring the Enterprises adhere to their statutory missions,” Calabria said. “This proposed rule is an important step as the Agency works to end…

Freddie Sees Low Mortgage Rates Through 2021

Mortgage rates are expected to remain near record lows through next year and home prices are expected to climb, though not as quickly as this year, according to Freddie Mac’s quarterly housing forecast. The forecast predicts: The average 30-year fixed-rate mortgage is expected to be 3.2 percent in 2020 and 3.0 percent in 2021. Currently, rates sit at 2.87 percent.House price growth is expected to increase to an annual rate of 5.5 percent in 2020 before slowing to 2.6 percent next year.Home sales are expected to increase in 2020 to 6.2 million homes and decrease in 2021 to 6.1 million homes.Purchase originations are expected to increase to $1.414 trillion in 2020 and $1.445 trillion in 2021.Refinance originations are expected to…

Fannie, Freddie Offer Relief After Hurricane Delta

In the wake of Hurricane Delta, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are reminding homeowners of the mortgage assistance and disaster relief options available to them. Relief options include: Homeowners may request mortgage assistance by contacting their mortgage servicer following a disasterMortgage servicers are authorized to suspend or reduce a homeowner’s mortgage payments for up to 90 days – even without establishing contact – if the servicer believes the homeowner was affected by the disasterHomeowners affected by a disaster are often eligible to reduce or suspend their mortgage payments for up to 12 monthsDuring this temporary payment break:Homeowners will not incur late feesForeclosure and other legal proceedings are suspended “Hurricane Delta will mark the fifth hurricane to hit the U.S. so…

Fannie, Freddie Extend Ban On Foreclosures, Evictions

Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac announced Thursday that they are extending the ban on single-family foreclosures and evictions for properties with mortgages managed by the two companies. The suspension, which was put in place to protect homeowners and renters amid the pandemic, will be in effect through the end of the year. It had been set to expire next week. “The extension of our eviction and foreclosure moratorium is just one part of the comprehensive assistance we’re providing borrowers and communities impacted by COVID-19,” said Donna Corley, executive vice president and head of Freddie Mac’s Single-Family business. “We are committed to helping families affected by the pandemic, and we have instructed servicers to work with borrowers who are unable to…

FHFA Again Extends Flexible Fannie, Freddie Rules

One month at a time. The Federal Housing Finance Agency on Wednesday announced that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac again extend flexible policies put in place in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, including buying loans in forbearance. “Extending these COVID-19 flexibilities helps keep the mortgage market moving and borrowers safe during the pandemic,” FHFA Director Mark Calabria said. The extensions cover: Buying qualified loans in forbearance.Alternative appraisals on purchase and rate-term refinance loans.Alternative methods for documenting income and verifying employment before loan closing.Expanding the use of power of attorney to assist with loan closings. The extension is through Sept. 30. The policies had been set to expire on Monday.…