On March 19, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and the U.S. Census Bureau jointly announced the following new residential construction statistics for February 2015: (i) BUILDING PERMITS: Privately owned housing units authorized by building permits in February were at a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1,092,000. This is 3.0 percent (±1.7%) above the revised January rate of 1,060,000, but is 7.7 percent (±2.0%) above the February 2014 estimate of 1,014,000. Release.
On October 21 and 22, the Fed, HUD, FDIC, FHFA, OCC, and SEC jointly approved final risk retention rules. The final rules, which implement Section 941 of Dodd Frank, generally follow the re-proposed rules issued in August 2013, mandating that sponsors retain at least 5% of the credit risk in asset-backed securities transactions. Generally, risk may be retained by holding either a horizontal or avertical slice of issued securities, while additional options are available for specific types of securitizations. The rules will apply toresidential mortgage-backed securities one year after publication in the Federal Register, and will apply to all other asset classes two years after publication. Final Rules. Joint Release.
On October 16, HUD released the American Housing Survey (AHS), which takes a deep look at the U.S. housing stock including detailed information on housing costs and quality. The 2013 AHS includes new information about neighborhood social life, use of public transportation, and the extent to which American families are prepared for disaster. Release. Survey.
On May 28, HUD announced that it is returning the Housing Authority of New Orleans (HANO) to local control from federal receivership effective June 30, 2014. HUD took possession of HANO in February 2002 for substantial default of its obligations. Press Release.
On September 30, HUD issued a proposed rule that would define a Qualified Mortgage (QM) that would be insured, guaranteed or administered by HUD, including single-family forward mortgages insured by FHA. In order to meet HUD’s QM definition, mortgage loans must: (i) require periodic payments; (ii) have terms not to exceed 30 years; (iii) except in certain circumstances, limit upfront points and fees to no more than 3% with adjustments to facilitate smaller loans; and (iv) be insured or guaranteed by FHA or HUD. Comments on the proposed rule must be submitted by October 30. HUD Release. HUD Proposed Rule.
On August 28, the FDIC, Fed, FHFA, OCC, SEC and HUD issued a notice of revised proposed rulemaking relating to required risk retention by sponsors in securitization transactions. The proposed rule would define “qualified residential mortgage” (QRM) in the same way that the CFPB has defined qualified mortgages (QMs) and would exempt securitizations of QRMs from the risk retention requirements. Comments on the revised proposed rule must be submitted by October 30. Joint Release. Proposed Rule.
On May 30, Treasury and HUD announced an extension of the Making Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) through December 31, 2015. In addition, on May 30, the FHFA announced that it has directed Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to extend the HAMP modification program and the streamlined modification initiative through year-end 2015. HAMP eligibility was originally scheduled to sunset in December 2013, and the streamlined modification initiative was originally expected to end in August 2015. Treasury Release. FHFA Release.
On December 3, HUD announced preliminary results from the first loan sale under its expanded Distressed Asset Stabilization Program (DASP). The next sale, in the first quarter of 2013, will include approximately 10,000-15,000 loans, and will have targeted Neighborhood Stabilization Outcome pools located in certain metropolitan areas in Georgia, California, Florida, and Ohio. HUD Release.
On July 26, the HUD’s final rule on Rental Assistance Demonstration (“RAD”) was published in the Federal Register. RAD allows public housing agencies and owners of certain federally-assisted housing properties to convert current levels of government assistance into long-term contracts. Release. Final Rule.