Fresh on the heels of President Obama signing legislation to reform Wall Street, federal officials are turning their attention to revamping the housing finance systems.
The administration will host a Conference on the Future of Housing Finance at the Treasury Department on Aug. 17, bringing together leading academic experts, community organizations, industry groups, and other stakeholders.
“The need for reform is clear, and we want to listen to a wide range of views as we chart a course to a more robust and stable housing market that works for the benefit of the American people,” said Shaun Donovan, secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), in a statement.
HUD and the Treasury Department are developing a comprehensive housing finance reform proposal for delivery to Congress by January 2011. In April, they issued a set of questions for public comment and received more than 300 responses.
To read the comments, visit http://www.regulations.gov/search/Regs/home.html#docketDetail?R=TREAS-DO-2010-0001
Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which have been in conservatorship since 2008, will no doubt be part of the discussion. The government-sponsored enterprises guarantee more than $5 trillion in mortgages and hold a total of $1.6 trillion in agency loans and other securities in their portfolios.
Other pieces of the housing finance system include the Federal Housing Administration, Ginnie Mae, the Federal Home Loan Banks, and other government programs and their private-sector partners.