Housing Market

Sen. Johnson stresses importance of careful housing finance reform

Tim Johnson

Tim Johnson

Sen. Tim Johnson (D-S.D.), the chairman of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs, stressed on Thursday the need for a reformed housing finance system that does not threaten the housing recovery or create market disruptions.

“Recognizing that there are many details that need to be explored and discussed by the full Committee, and that many Committee Members have input of their own that they would like to include, we plan to hold hearings this fall to explore the finer points of proposed changes,” Johnson said. “This will give the entire Committee the opportunity to explore the various modifications and wholesale changes that we will consider.”

Johnson said the risk of “getting any major reform wrong cannot be overstated,” adding that it is critical for policymakers to understand the mechanics of a new housing finance system that could have a substantial impact on families that are qualified and able to afford a home.

“I have asked the experts…to help us analyze proposed changes to the system and to help us understand which essential pieces of the current system should be preserved,” Johnson said. “Better understanding the interaction between the pieces that we would like to preserve – like the widely available, 30-year, fixed rate mortgage – and the changes we would like to make is critical in order to achieve meaningful improvements to the current system.”

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