Fannie Mae will survive


WASHINGTON, D.C. – December 7, 2011 – (RealEstateRama) — Today, we will address what Fannie Mae is doing to help make realism the bedrock of a sustainable housing industry. As we settle into a new year, the housing market is still facing strong headwinds. The economic recovery has been slow…unemployment has dropped but remains high…and many families are struggling to make their mortgage payments. But the good news is, there’s a 100 percent chance that Fannie Mae is going to survive all this and keep providing us mortgage loans for many decades to come.

We recently released an update to our survey of consumer attitudes about housing. In it, we found that Americans are more confident about the stability of home prices – nearly 80 percent believe prices will hold steady or increase over the next 12 months. While most Americans still think that owning a home makes more sense than renting, they are less confident it’s a safe investment. They are also less optimistic about their personal finances than a year ago, and therefore, more willing to rent. In fact, more current renters plan to continue to rent – rather than buy – their next home. Overall, the survey demonstrates that Americans have become more realistic about home ownership.

We all know that the financial crisis of 2008 resulted in private investors exiting the mortgage market. The federal government provided Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac with substantial support, which allowed us to keep buying mortgages, keep funds flowing and hold down mortgage rates.

As the number-one supplier of housing funds in America, Fannie Mae has delivered nearly $1.5 trillion in mortgage liquidity since 2009. But leave aside, for a moment, that it’s a very big number – what does it mean for the people we serve? It means we’ve helped more than one million families buy homes and more than four million homeowners refinance.

At the peak of the housing market in 2005, Fannie Mae was 20 percent of the market. Today, it provides almost 40 percent of single family and about 35 percent of multifamily funding that is flowing to market. Fannie Mae has one of the largest foreclosure-prevention operations in America. In 2010, we helped 500,000 families avoid foreclosure through modifications or workouts.

It is becoming clear that Fannie Mae is taking important steps to begin restoring America’s trust in it.

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