Freddie Mac's Plan to Stall Impact of Shutdown

October 8, 2013

With the government shutdown now in its second week, Freddie Mac has issued intermediate guidelines to lending institutions for approving home loans and modifications to keep the housing market from grinding to a halt.

Federal employees and contractors are not receiving paychecks during the government shutdown, but Freddie Mac is allowing lenders to approve mortgages for those borrowers — even in the absence of steady income — assuming they meet other loan requirements and plan to return to work once the government reopens.  

"Today’s bulletin is intended to give lenders the certainty to continue approving and delivering new mortgages that meet Freddie Mac guidelines to eligible borrowers, such as federal employees and contractors, during the temporary shutdown," says Dave Lowman, Freddie Mac executive vice president of single-family business. "We are also reminding servicers of our forbearance options to assist qualified home owners with Freddie Mac mortgages to minimize the shutdown’s impact on our nation’s families and communities."

Freddie Mac has mortgage relief and forbearance policies available to public- and private-sector employees who are affected by the government’s shutdown. One of the biggest hurdles for lenders is being unable to verify borrowers’ income directly from the IRS during the government freeze. But both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have said they would adjust policies as needed so that loans and modifications could continue to be approved. 

Source: “Freddie Mac guides lenders through government freeze,” HousingWire (Oct. 7, 2013)

Read More

NAR: What Does the Government Shutdown Mean to Housing?
Working With Your Clients During the Gov't Shutdown
Gov't Shutdown Pushes Mortgage Rates Down