Resale Homes Report

Q: “As a homeowner who may be looking to move into a larger house one day soon, I’m wondering how this new housing bill just passed by Congress might help me?” — Dawn C., Henderson

A: Based on what we know so far, I’d say the short answer to your question is it can only help. How much help this new law will provide to local homeowners and potential home buyers remains to be seen.

What we do know is that Congress has passed this bill and President Bush has just signed it into law. Officially called HR 3221, the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 should help people nationwide, especially here in Southern Nevada, buy and keep their homes.

GLVAR strongly supports this legislation, saying it “will help bring stability to the housing market and stem the rising rate of foreclosures.”

Realtors are looking forward to many aspects of this bill, including provisions designed to modernize the Federal Housing Administration. The bill will simplify and make FHA-backed mortgages more available, while helping thousands of families refinance existing mortgages and keep their homes.

Other highlights include reforming government-sponsored enterprises, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, and permanently increasing limits on FHA and GSE loans. The bill also includes a tax credit for first-time home buyers, which could help more people buy a home.

So, if you’re planning to sell your current home and buy a new one, this bill could help you sell your home easier. It could also help you finance and afford your next home.

For more information on the bill, visit

Patty Kelley is the president of the Greater Las Vegas Association of Realtors and has worked in the real estate industry for more than 30 years. GLVAR has nearly 15,000 members. To ask Kelley a question, e-mail her at For more information, visit

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