Although not specifically mentioned in a recent letter to the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) regarding its most recent defect taxonomy proposals, the Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) program certainly applies to the overall goal of the correspondence as co-signed by nine consumer advocacy organizations.
In a joint letter to Lopa Kolluri, FHA’s principal deputy assistant secretary, the American Bankers Association, Americans for Financial Reform Education Fund, Center for Responsible Lending, Consumer Action, Housing Policy Council, National Consumer Law Center, National Fair Housing Alliance, National Housing Conference and the National Housing Law Project said HUD’s proposed defect taxonomy did not provide enough specifics on loan-level defects and remedies to be successful. The groups said HUD should not finalize the taxonomy before doing further engagement with stakeholders.
“We’ve learned a lot from the last housing crisis and how to reach homeowners and how to modify their mortgages to help them stay in their homes,” Dworkin says. “And we have such a shortage of housing stock, we don’t expect to see a market disruption because of unavoidable foreclosures.”
A newly formed group of big-name housing advocates—calling themselves the Underserved Mortgage Market Coalition—have called on Fannie, Freddie, and the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) to be more transparent about their plans and more aggressive about how they will pursue that mission going forward. “Amid a housing affordability crisis that requires bold and aggressive action, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have set forth plans that fail to effectively reach those not served or not served well by the conventional mortgage market” the coalition’s members wrote in a letter to FHFA Acting Director Sandra L. Thompson.
David Dworkin at the National Housing Conference says it was always intended to be a short-term fix. “The moratorium has prevented what could have been a devastating wave of evictions during the worst phase of the pandemic,” Dworkin said. But he says it has also cost landlords billions of dollars.
David Dworkin, president of the National Housing Conference, said the rejection is a great opportunity for GSEs to develop a robust plan that “stretches their capabilities.” “The GSEs’ obligations to serve underserved markets can be much more robust, and these plans don’t do that,” he said.
The broader political picture for the FDIC after the Biden administration is even murkier. Some analysts say that McWilliams’ resignation could mark a new era of partisan-style governance at the agency. “At some point,” said David Dworkin, president and CEO of the National Housing Conference, “we’re going to have to ask ourselves: How tied to the political pendulum do we want our regulatory agencies to be, particularly when it swings back hard and fast?”
Also expressing congratulations was David M. Dworkin, president and CEO of the National Housing Conference (NHC) who also said that McCargo will be best positioned for success by addressing any personnel deficiencies in the government’s housing arm, including filling the position of Federal Housing Administration (FHA) Commissioner through the confirmation of the president’s nominee, Julia Gordon, for that position.
David M. Dworkin, President and CEO of the National Housing Conference echoed similar sentiments. “President Biden’s nomination of Sandra Thompson to serve as Director of the FHFA is the right choice for one of the most important jobs in housing.”