MBA and NAR respond to FHFA policy changes

NAR flags concerns at the effect of these changes on the availability of mortgage credit

MBA and NAR respond to FHFA policy changes

Just hours after the Supreme Court gave President Joe Biden authority to remove the head of the Federal Housing Finance Agency at will, the White House fired Mark Calabria and appointed Sandra Thompson as acting director – a move which the Mortgage Bankers Association has offered its support for.

“MBA congratulates Sandra Thompson on her appointment as the acting director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency. Her experience, expertise, and deep knowledge of housing finance will serve her well in this role,” said MBA president and CEO Bob Broeksmit. “We fully agree with the acting director’s stated goals of operating the regulated entities in a safe and sound manner while supporting their missions to increase the availability of affordable housing and extend access to credit.” 

Broeksmit added that MBA has worked with Thompson extensively in the past. Thompson previously served as deputy director of the agency’s Division of Housing Mission and Goals, where she oversaw FHFA’s housing and regulatory policy, fair lending, and other regulatory matters.

“MBA looks forward to continuing this relationship as she addresses a variety of housing finance issues, including the conservatorship of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. This will include protecting taxpayers, serving the GSEs’ affordable housing mission, and ensuring a stable secondary mortgage market for a wide variety of single-family and multifamily lenders, regardless of size or business model,” he said. 

The National Association of Realtors, however, is worried that the court’s ruling on FHFA’s leadership structure may hurt mortgage credit availability.

“NAR has appreciated Director Calabria’s willingness to address complex issues and advance GSE reform conversations over the past two years,” said NAR president Charlie Oppler. “While the agency has also worked tirelessly to uphold a safe, stable mortgage market throughout the pandemic, NAR has concerns that recent FHFA policy changes could jeopardize the availability of mortgage credit in the future.”

But Oppler said that regardless of any potential leadership changes on the horizon, realtors will continue working with the FHFA to advance its utility model for GSE reform as conservatorship ends.