FHA Single-Family Mortgage Insurance

FHA Single-Family Mortgage Insurance : Financial Status of the Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund (MMI Fund)

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The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) insures private lenders against losses on home mortgages made to borrowers that meet certain eligibility criteria. If the borrower defaults-that is, does not repay the mortgage as promised-and the home goes to foreclosure, FHA pays the lender the remaining principal amount owed. By insuring lenders against the possibility of borrower default, FHA is intended to expand access to mortgage credit to households who might not otherwise be able to obtain a mortgage at an affordable interest rate or at all, such as those with small down payments. When an FHA-insured mortgage goes to foreclosure, the lender files a claim with FHA for the remaining amount owed on the mortgage. Claims on FHA-insured home mortgages are paid out of the Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund (MMI Fund), which is funded through fees paid by borrowers (called premiums), rather than through appropriations. However, like all federal credit programs covered by the Federal Credit Reform Act of 1990, FHA can draw on permanent and indefinite budget authority with the U.S. Treasury to cover unanticipated increases in the cost of the loans that it insures, if necessary, without additional congressional action. Each year, as part of the annual budget process, the expected costs of mortgages insured in past years are re-estimated to take into account updated performance and economic assumptions. If the anticipated costs of insured mortgages have increased, then FHA must transfer funds from a secondary reserve account into its primary reserve account to cover the amount of the increase in the anticipated cost of insured loans. If there are not enough funds in the secondary reserve account, then the MMI Fund is required to take funds from Treasury using its permanent and indefinite budget authority in order to make the required transfer. Separately from the budget re-estimates, FHA is required by law to obtain an independent actuarial review of the MMI Fund each year. This review provides a view of the MMI Fund's financial status by estimating the MMI Fund's economic value-that is, the amount of funds that the MMI Fund currently has on hand plus the net present value of all of the expected future cash flows on the mortgages that are currently insured under the MMI Fund. The actuarial review also determines whether the MMI Fund is in compliance with a statutory requirement to maintain a capital ratio of at least 2%. The capital ratio is the economic value of the MMI Fund divided by the total dollar amount of mortgages insured under the MMI Fund. In recent years, increased foreclosure rates, as well as economic factors such as falling house prices, have contributed to an increase in expected losses on FHA-insured loans. This increase in expected losses has put pressure on the MMI Fund and reduced the amount of resources that FHA has on hand to pay for additional, unexpected future losses. The capital ratio fell below 2% in FY2009, and has remained below 2% since then, turning negative in FY2012 and FY2013 but becoming positive again in FY2014. At the end of FY2013, FHA announced that it would need $1.7 billion from Treasury to cover an increase in anticipated costs of loan guarantees. This marked the first time that FHA has needed funds from Treasury to cover an increase in expected future losses in its single-family mortgage program. The FY2014 annual actuarial review of the MMI Fund released in November 2014 showed that, according to current estimates, the economic value of the MMI Fund is positive $4.8 billion and the capital ratio is currently 0.41%. This suggests that the MMI Fund would have about $4.8 billion remaining after realizing all of its expected future cash flows on currently insured mortgages, and it represents an increase of $6.1 billion from FY2013 when the economic value was estimated to be negative $1.3 billion.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 26 pages
  • 215.9 x 279.4 x 1.52mm | 117.93g
  • Createspace Independent Publishing Platform
  • United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1507868421
  • 9781507868423