Industry News

Higher mortgage limits doomed in the House?

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CORRECTION: This article has been updated to correct Jerry Howard's title; Howard is CEO of the National Association of Home Builders.What are the odds that the U.S. House of Representatives could follow the lead of the Senate and restore the higher conventional and Federal Housing Administration mortgage limits that expired Oct. 1 but had been in place since 2008? Is there even a sliver of a chance that a Republican-dominated House could chuck Tea Party dogma to the wind and vote to increase the federal government's role in the housing market? You've got to be kidding, right? And for that matter, isn't the Obama administration itself on record strongly favoring a return to lower mortgage ceilings as a necessary step toward phasing Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac out of existence and lowering FHA's market share? No question that conventional political wisdom says the higher limits approved in the Senate will die in the House. But I want to go out on a limb here and suggest that ...