National Association of Realtors tries to present FHA myths as 'facts'

Diana Parkhouse (Flickr) (CC BY 2.0)

Article Highlights

  • For over 60 years the housing lobby has claimed "now" is a bad time for reform.

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  • No matter how hard the NAR tries to change the facts, this is not your great-grandmother's FHA.

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  • Since 1975, an estimated 3.2 million FHA homeowners had their dreams turned into nightmares.

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The National Association of Realtors (NAR) is at it again. Not being satisfied with the FHA’s decades-long lending nightmare that resulted in an estimated 3.2 million dashed homeowner dreams since 1975, it is launching a new ad campaign entitled “FHA Facts”. Their “facts” are cold comfort to the half million working-class families getting loans from the FHA since 2008 who will lose their homes to foreclosure. These families will lose a sizable portion of their savings and see their credit ruined because the FHA set them up to fail.

The housing lobby says that “now” is a bad time for reform. They’ve said that for over 60 years. American families who face the crushing fact of foreclosure can’t afford to wait for the housing lobby to embrace common-sense changes to restore FHA’s vital mission of providing responsible credit to working class families and first-time home buyers.

Presents the following myths as:

No matter how hard the NAR tries to change the facts, this is not your great-grandmother’s FHA.

Fact: FHA’s so called safe lending since 2008 will result in a half million foreclosures (source: HUD documents).

Fact: FHA’s abusive lending practices are particularly harmful to working class families and neighborhoods (source: www.NightmareAtFHA.com).

Fact: Since 1975 an estimated 3.2 million FHA homeowners had their dreams turn to nightmares (source: HUD documents).

Fact: Today’s FHA’s lending standards are not “exactly the way Congress designed it to operate 80 years ago”.

  •     Maximum loan-to-value: 80% in 1934 vs. 96.5% today
  •     Maximum loan term: 20 years in 1934 vs. 30 years today
  •     Insurance claim rate: 0.2% cumulative claim rate from 1934-1954 (2.9 million loans) vs. 10.6% average annual claim rate from 1975-2011 (30 million loans)
  •     Insurance loss rate: 9% average from 1934-1954 vs. 63% in 2012
  •     FHA loss rate has increased 400 times, having gone from a 0.02% loss rate (1934-1954) to 7% loss rate today
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