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FHFA And The Enterprises Coordinate Action On Equitable Housing

Katie Jensen
Sep 08, 2021

Today the FHFA is announcing that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the Enterprises) will submit Equitable Housing Finance Plans to the FHFA by the end of 2021.

KEY TAKEAWAYS
  • Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the Enterprises) will submit Equitable Housing Finance Plans to the FHFA by the end of 2021.
  • These plans, updated annually, will identify and address barriers to sustainable housing opportunities.
  • The goal of the Enterprises is to advance equity in housing finance within the next three years.

Today the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) is announcing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the Enterprises) will submit Equitable Housing Finance Plans to the FHFA by the end of 2021. These plans, updated annually, will identify and address barriers to sustainable housing opportunities, including the Enterprises' goal to advance equity in housing finance within the next three years.

“By identifying the barriers to equitable and sustainable housing finance opportunities and setting goals for addressing those barriers, the Enterprises, consistent with safety and ​soundness, can responsibly reduce the racial and ethnic disparities in homeownership and wealth that still exist today,” said FHFA Acting Director Sandra L. Thompson. “For generations, discriminatory practices like redlining have prevented communities of color from building wealth through homeownership.”

Under the recently signed Memorandum of Understanding between the FHFA and HUD regarding fair housing and lending practices, HUD provided the FHFA some insight to kickstart the equitable housing finance initiative. This is a first-of-its-kind collaborative agreement regarding fair housing and fair lending coordination.

“HUD is pleased to work alongside FHFA and others on a comprehensive approach to building a more equitable housing finance system,” said HUD Secretary Marcia L. Fudge. “HUD's recent collaborations with FHFA are crucial actions that will advance fair housing and fair lending for all Americans and expand access to opportunities for homeownership and the generational wealth building that can come from it. This is a major step in bringing more equity to the housing finance industry.” 

The FHFA has the statutory authority to ensure the Enterprises operate in a manner consistent with the public interest. From now until October 25, 2021, the FHFA is seeking public input to aid the Enterprises and the FHFA in their plans for sustainable equitable housing. Input can be submitted via FHFA's website​​ or by mail addressed to: Federal Housing Finance Agency, Office of the Director, 400 7th Street SW, 10th Floor, Washington, D.C. 20219.

Update: The FHFA released several sets of demographic data related to fair housing and lending goals. The data revels that the rate of homeownership among minorities in the U.S. continues to lag well behind the national average. This is why the FHFA outlined their housing goals to focus on low-income borrowers living in minority areas. Fair Lending Data and Housing Goals Data can be found on FHFA's website.

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