House Passes Sherman-Van Taylor Bill to Help Ease the Homebuying Process for FHA Mortgage Borrowers
Washington, DC – On Tuesday, May 18, the House passed bipartisan legislation led by Congressman Brad Sherman (D-Sherman Oaks), Chair of the House Subcommittee on Investor Protection and Capital Markets, and Congressman Van Taylor (R-TX) to make it easier for homebuyers to purchase a home with a Federal Housing Administration (FHA) mortgage. H.R. 3008, the Homebuyer Assistance Act of 2021 would do this by reducing a number of hurdles which appraisers currently face before they are allowed to perform appraisals for home purchases financed by an FHA mortgage. Federal standards set for FHA appraisers would be brought in line with the federal minimum requirements already in place for other home mortgages, particularly those purchased by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.
By making this change the Homebuyer Assistance Act would help address the current shortage of certified appraisers that some parts of the country are currently facing. In response to a 2017 survey, nearly 75 percent of appraisers cited regulatory burdens as a leading reason they would leave the field. Moreover, this lack of appraisers for FHA-insured mortgages has a disproportionately large impact on first-time homebuyers, low- and moderate-income households, and people of color. Over 83 percent of FHA mortgages for the purchase of a home in 2020 were obtained by first-time homebuyers and over one third of all FHA loans were obtained by minority households.
“The process of purchasing a home is already difficult enough for first-time, low-income, and minority homebuyers. They do not need the added challenge of finding a certified appraiser,” said Rep. Sherman. “This legislation is a commonsense revision to current appraisal requirements which will make FHA mortgages accessible to more Americans.” Sherman also thanked House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters for working closely with him to advance this legislation.