Federal Condo Financing Bill Passes Senate; Now Heading to President’s Desk

H.R. 3700, sponsored by Reps. Luetkemeyer (R-MO) and Cleaver (R-MO) and through companion legislation, Senators Menendez (D-NJ) and Scott (R-SC), passed the Senate under unanimous consent last week, and is on the way to the President for his signature. This legislation previously passed the House by a vote of 427-0.

Also known as the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act of 2016, HR 3700 does the following:

    Solves a number of concerns regarding FHA’s condo rules:Reduces the FHA condo owner occupancy ratio to 35%, unless FHA takes alternative action  within 90 days.Directs FHA to streamline the condo re-certification process.Provides more flexibility for mixed use buildings.Mirrors the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s (FHFA) rules regarding private transfer fees for FHA condo lending.Provides permanent authority for direct endorsement for approved lenders to approve Rural Housing Service (RHS) loans.Makes reforms to federally assisted housing programs to streamline the programs.

REALTORS® worked hard on this legislation, bringing it to Capitol Hill as part of the REALTOR® Legislative Meetings and Trade Expo, and with a Call for Action.  Nearly 140,000 REALTORS® participated in the Call for Action with a response rate over 15%. This clearly made a difference on Capitol Hill. The President is expected to sign the legislation shortly.

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