On Monday, February 25th, 2013, the Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) Housing Commission released a report titled, "Housing America's Future: New Directions for National Policy". This product was the culmination of 16-months of research and study.
NAR President Gary Thomas made a strong case for careful action by Congress as it decides what, if anything, it should do about the FHA.
NAR President Gary Thomas testified before the Senate Banking Committee that without the FHA, the housing downturn and economic recession would have been far worse for the nation.
NAR submitted comments on the Ability to Repay/Qualified Mortgage (QM) concurrent proposal seeking guidance on the calculation of fees and points and other matters such as rural mortgage access and non-profit lending.
Recently, the news media reported that national flood insurance rates could increase to $30,000 a year.
The Fish and Wildlife Service has finalized its plan for tackling the backlog of species that warrant protection under the Endangered Species Act.
FHA Commissioner Carol Galante testified before the House Financial Services Committee last week. Her testimony focused on the critical role that FHA has been taking in the housing recovery. She also acknowledged FHA's financial woes, and explained the variety of things FHA has been doing to stabilize the Fund.
On Jan. 1, 2013, the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) began phasing out the rate subsidies for the vast majority of older properties. The 2012 Biggert-Waters law (which extended the NFIP for 5 years) requires that subsidized rates increase in steps of 25% per year until the affected owners are paying the full cost for flood insurance. Passage of this law was essential to ensure that all properties, including second/vacation homes, would continue to have access to comprehensive coverage under the NFIP.
NAR offers free public advocacy campaign materials for associations.
In January, NAR released its annual Public Policy Survey. The survey asks REALTORS® to share which issues are most important to them. 2013 NAR President Gary Thomas shares the results in his podcast.