FHA Loan Gravy Train Derailing?

After a week of travel to Motown on business, and seeing the housing bust at ground zero, I have to ask you all some questions regarding housing and our government’s role in the quagmire.

Fannie and Freddie dominated the easy loan space to back all borrowers with a pulse from 2000-2007, and now they occupy a toxic waste dumping ground for many a bank’s bad mortgages while trading as penny stocks with all but explicit taxpayer backing.

The new game in town when it comes to financing mortgages circa 2008-2010 is the truly explicit government backed FHA. That federal agency is THE mortgage market, without which no private bank/investor in their right mind would loan money to anyone to buy real estate at today’s prices. Private loan origination to purchase real estate has all but disappeared.

Is the FHA spigot beginning to twist toward the “off” position?

“The Federal Housing Administration’s Mortgagee Review Board (MRB) published a notice today to announce dozens of administrative actions against FHA-approved lenders who failed to meet its requirements. The total amount of originators that used to write FHA-backed mortgages, the report shows, but are restricted from doing so today, has surpassed the 900 mark.”

“The rate of seriously delinquent mortgages backed by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) declined slightly from May to June, but the gross number of mortgages that are either 90 or more days past due or in foreclosure increased 35% year-over-year.”

“The total value of unpaid FHA mortgages was $865.5bn in June, up 30.3% from $663.8bn one year ago and up 3.3% from $837.8bn in May.”

So we’re on the hook as taxpayers for Fannie and Freddie, and now the FHA is approaching the $1Tillion mark. Delinquencies are skyrocketing, yet the federal government keeps propping up housing prices despite the reality of stagnant wages. Why? How long can this last? When does cold hard cash flow via wages show up in the equation? Perhaps sooner than we all think…

“A total of 168,915 FHA loan applications were received last month, down 6.9 percent from May and 29.4 percent lower than levels seen a year ago, according to the FHA Outlook report.”

How much of an income and/or VAT-sales tax increase is Portland and Oregon willing to pay in order to prop up housing prices via government intervention and real estate bailouts? What business does the government have in financing our privately owned assets?

The sooner the government gets out of housing finance, the sooner most Americans will be able to truly afford a home based upon local wages. Why do we vote for and pay our elected officials to artificially prop up housing and real estate prices?

This post is just a few thoughts from the road, after seeing real estate up close in the Detriot and Southern Michigan area at truly rock bottom prices. Based upon what I saw during my travels, wage based reality bites…

Portland Housing Blog

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