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September 10, 2008

Despite some recent comments to the contrary, HR 6694 is NOT a done deal. You MUST keep the pressure on your elected officials in Congress to Support H.R. 6694 and Support Downpayment assistance.

The most current information we have is that Rep. Barney Frank, D-Mass, the chairman of the House Financial Services Committee held a committee field hearing this past weekend in Stockton, Massachusetts. As reported by Inman News, Frank made the following statement:

"The FHA loved the ban on down-payment assistance (but) hated the ban on risk-based pricing. That seemed to me to offer an opportunity. So (HR 6694) will replace both bans with middle ground -- and it will pass the House, I can guarantee you. What you want to do now obviously is talk to your senators. We think it will go through there -- it has the approval now of the Secretary of HUD."

However, Inman also reported that, a HUD spokesman said he could not confirm that Preston supports HR 6694, and that HUD is still reviewing the bill.

"We understand that Congress is working on legislation related to seller-funded down-payment assistance, but our primary focus is on implementing the recently passed housing bill," the spokesman, Lemar Wooley, said in an e-mail. "Throughout this process, our number one priority is to ensure FHA's insurance fund remains sound and does not require taxpayer dollars."

While the statement made by Chairman Frank is a significant sign that H.R. 6694 is moving in the right direction, it is troubling that HUD has not substantiated Chairman Frank’s statement.  Clearly, the reform and reinstatement of DPA is not yet a done deal. We do not have much time left, so we urge you to continue reaching out to all your elected officials in Congress, Senators and Representatives and let them know that you support downpayment assistance and you want them to support H.R. 6694. You are making a change.

We appreciate Chairman Frank's continued leadership on this issue. We pledge to support his efforts to achieve a successful reinstatement of DPA.

For more information, please go to www.supporthomeownership.com