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Serving the Underserved

On Monday, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac released their proposed Duty to Serve (DTS) plans. The purpose of the plan is to better serve some persistent affordable housing problems in the U.S.

DTS is a Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) plan which requires Fannie and Freddie to increase the availability of mortgage financing in rural housing, manufactured housing, and affordable housing preservation in order to serve very low- to moderate-income families.

"Duty to Serve presents a welcome opportunity to lead the mortgage industry and help more American families with their housing needs," said Danny Gardner, Freddie Mac's vice president of affordable lending and access to credit. "Our plan includes increased loan purchases in these underserved markets, new offerings, market research, increased homebuyer education, community engagement and local outreach. We intend to work with our customers and the many dedicated organizations that are deeply knowledgeable about these markets at the local, regional and national levels."

Freddie Mac stated that they are in the process of undertaking activities to stabilize communities, prevent foreclosures, expand credit, educate future borrowers, counsel current borrowers, and support affordable rental housing.

Freddie Mac’s plan, as well as Fannie Mae’s DTS Underserved Markets Plan, have been submitted to the FHFA for public comment. Input can be made by the general public on the plan through July 10 at the FHFA website.

“Fannie Mae welcomes the opportunity to create housing opportunities that are affordable and we are prepared to bring all our experience, knowledge, and capabilities to bear in fulfilling our Duty to Serve. We recognize that there are no easy solutions to the tough and often long-standing challenges that characterize underserved markets. It will take research, education, and innovative partnerships to make housing more affordable in all markets,” said Jeffery Hayward, Executive Vice President and Head of Multifamily, Fannie Mae. “We are excited that the Duty to Serve rule aligns with our mission to increase access to mortgage credit and housing options for all Americans as we find new ways and new partners to support underserved markets that need help.”

About Author: Seth Welborn

Seth Welborn is a contributing writer for DS News. He is a Harding University graduate with a degree in English and a minor in writing, and has studied abroad in Athens, Greece. An East Texas native, he also works part-time as a photographer.
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