UPDATED: You acted, Congress listened, homebuyers save

UPDATE: It’s official, borrowers won’t have to pay an extra fee when obtaining a mortgage thanks to lobbying by REALTORS.  More than a fifth of REALTORS® across the country, or about 197,000 members, participated in a Call for Action that NAR launched in October to prevent Congress from enacting “G-fees” at the expense of future homeowners. This is a huge victory for REALTORS. Over 600,000 letters to Congress were sent in what was REALTORS®’ most forceful response to a Call for Action. The effort by REALTORS® paid off when President Obama signed the Highway bill on December 11, which did not include the fees.

Since last summer, NAR has been arguing that proposals to use so-called “g-fee income” from the two secondary mortgage market companies, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, to help cover costs of the bill would set a bad precedent and hurt homebuyers’ ability to obtain affordable mortgage financing. NAR’s transportation advocacy efforts have focused on a long-term sustainable program.  Although five years of consistency of federal transportation programs is a major success, funding after 2020 will need to be ironed out once more.

Original Post: 11/5/2015
Thanks to the thousands of messages sent by REALTORS®, today the U.S. House of Representatives voted to remove a new fee that would have increased the cost of a mortgage for home buyers. The Federal Highway Transportation bill (H.R. 22) contained an extended guarantee fee (G-fee) charged on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac mortgages. For weeks, REALTORS® have been asking House members to refrain from charging mortgage borrowers for the cost of highway construction. The House listened and removed the G-fee from the highway bill by a vote of 354 to 72. This bill now goes to a House/Senate conference. REALTORS® are encouraged to continue sending messages to Senators to accept the House version of the highway bill. Look for your updated “Call for Action” to the Senate at www.realtoractioncenter.com.