Incoming FHFA Director Mel Watt to Delay Mortgage Fees

Acting Federal Housing Finance Administration (FHFA) Director Edward DeMarco announced the day before incoming FHFA Director Mel Watt was approved by the Senate that he intended to raise certain GSE (government-sponsored enterprise) fees in early 2014. He says this will entice more private lenders back into the mortgage market and reduce the government’s role. Some housing groups complain that the fees are already too high, and making them higher would put home buying out of reach for many people. Others are not sure the strategy would actually work. Watt, however, may be more interested in making credit available than in shrinking the GSEs, according to As MHProNews has learned, he will postpone the fee hikes until he thoroughly reviews the operation. FBR Capital Markets analysts Edward Mills states, “We view this action as confirmation that incoming director Watt will place the cost and availability of credit at the center of his decision-making, which, if successful, will allow for the expansion of mortgage credit availability.”

(Photo credit: Jonathan Ernst/YAHOO and Reuters–Fannie Mae headquarters)

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