Political gridlock, proposed changes & CFPB finding on HECM APRs
We’re in the full swing of the political season as the 2020 presidential race is underway. In a recent LGBTQ Town Hall hosted by CNN on October 10th, former HUD Secretary Julian Castro called out the agency’s head Ben Carson for his remarks during an internal meeting while visiting HUD’s San Francisco office.
The Washington Post reported in September “Carson also lamented that society no longer seemed to know the difference between men and women, two of the agency staffers said”. During the LGBTQ Town Hall candidate, Castro said, “The comments that Secretary Carson, my successor, made a couple of weeks ago are shameful. When you’re housing secretary, you’re there to serve everybody. And his comments made clear that he’s not able to serve everybody”. A HUD spokesperson denied the use of any derogatory language. It’s reported that Carson plans to leave HUD after the 2020 presidential election to return to the private sector should Trump be reelected.
And in other news, distraction and gridlock in the nation’s capital may be a good thing- at least when it comes to proposed additional changes to the federally-insured reverse mortgage. Two changes that remain unsettled are the return to geographic or county lending limits instead of the current national lending limit, and the removal of the HECM from FHA’s Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund. Both reforms were promoted in the Trump Administration’s Housing Finance Reform plan released earlier this year in March.
In his prepared written statement for last month’s hearing on the HECM NRMLA President & CEO Peter Bell wrote, “Area-by-area’ loan limits penalize homeowners who have improved and maintained their homes over the years and have accumulated more equity as a result of higher home values. Applying the forward mortgage concept of ‘area limits’ to a financial resource (HECMs) created for a completely different population at a completely different time of their life would be ill-advised”.