Reverse Mortgage Industry Seeks Flexibility in HECM Program

NewImage.jpgThe San Antonio Business Journal (SABJ) is reporting that without a subsidy from Congress in the coming weeks, reverse mortgage industry leaders say the HECM could be more difficult to obtain.

While the House recently voted to provide $140 million for the HECM program, the Senate has yet to vote on its FY 2011 appropriation for the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.  Legislative sources say that since this money is part of Congress’ larger overall budget for fiscal year 2011, final legislative approval for the appropriations could come as late as September.

The National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association told the SABJ it’s seeking changes to the way the program operates if money for the fund is not approved.  By doing this, Peter Bell, President of the association said it would help reduce the stress on the insurance fund or make the reverse mortgage program self-sustaining.

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“We’re looking for two things: one is to preserve the $150 million that has been granted by the subcommittees and two, to get technical language that gives HUD (the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development) the flexibility to create this new variation of the program to complement the existing (reverse mortgages),” Bell says.

Congressional funding holds key to reverse mortgage program