NAHB chief to policymakers: Proceed with caution on FHA changes

November 16, 2012 12:30PM

The National Association of Home Builders has called for “policymakers to proceed cautiously” when considering a restructuring of the Federal Housing Administration, which for decades has played a key role in stabilizing the housing market. The FHA ended September with a $16.3 billion in losses.

With rising mortgage delinquencies could exhaust the agency’s reserves, the FHA is expected to announce that it will rely on funding from taxpayers for the first time ever. The decision on taking a taxpayer bailout won’t come until 2013.

“The fact that the FHA finds itself in this position now, as opposed to four years ago during the height of the financial meltdown, is testament to its ability to meet its mission in these difficult economic times,” NAHB Chairman Barry Rutenberg said in the statement. He continued, “Given the significant role that housing plays in the economy, policymakers need to take a long-term, holistic approach to housing finance reform and carefully gauge how it affects other efforts under way to get the nation’s fiscal house in order and achieve long-term economic growth.” — Zachary Kussin