real estate brief


NAR urges Capital Hill to protect, reform programs

With more than 7,700 attendees during the National Association of Realtors annual Midyear Legislative Meetings and Trade Expo held in Washington D.C., several thousand Realtors went to Capitol Hill to persuade their members of Congress to protect affordable and safe financing for American families and to reform government-sponsored enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Other issues they carried to Congress was the need for affordable and available property insurance including the National Flood Insurance Program and natural disaster coverage, and enhancing liquidity in the commercial real estate market.

“You must tell your senators and representatives that legislation should not increase buyer down payments,” said Jerry Giovaniello, NAR senior vice president and chief lobbyist in a meeting held during the expo.

“And that we oppose the amendment by Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) that would shut down Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The two GSEs are unique in the world and must continue in some form in the future.”

The Realtors want the House and Senate to pass H.R. 5072, sponsored by Reps. Maxine Waters (D-Calif.) and Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), that would strengthen the Federal Housing Administration while still allowing access to safe and affordable financing by responsible borrowers.

They also pressed legislators to pass H.R. 2483, by Reps. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.) and Gary Miller (R-Calif.) that would make the current Federal Housing Authority loan limits permanent. The current limit in high-cost areas, set to expire Dec. 31, is $729,500.

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