The White House, President George W. Bush Click to print this document

For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
March 28, 2008

Fact Sheet: Taking Sensible, Decisive Action to Help Homeowners
Administrative Actions Are Helping American Homeowners

     Fact sheet In Focus: Economy
     Fact sheet In Focus: Homeownership

Today, President Bush will visit the Novadebt counseling center in Freehold, New Jersey to meet with housing counselors who are helping struggling homeowners and discuss the housing market. The HOPE NOW Alliance hotline (888-995-HOPE) helps connect struggling homeowners with mortgage counselors who work on possible solutions. Novadebt, a HOPE NOW Alliance member, is one of the counseling centers that homeowners are directed to when they call the HOPE hotline. HOPE NOW has announced that since July more than one million struggling homeowners received a work-out – either a loan modification or a repayment plan that helped them avoid foreclosure.

The Administration is exploring new ways FHASecure can help more qualified homeowners.

The Administration Has Repeatedly Taken Action To Keep Our Economy Growing And Assist Struggling Homeowners

The President and his administration have continually addressed economic uncertainties and troubles in the housing market.

Congress Should Act Now On Measures To Keep Our Economy Growing

Congress should complete work on FHA modernization to help thousands of additional families qualify for prime-rate financing. A modernized FHA would allow for more flexible downpayment requirements and expand FHA's authority to price insurance fairly with risk based premiums.

Congress should pass legislation that helps at-risk homeowners by permitting cities and States to issue tax-exempt bonds for refinancing existing home loans and by increasing existing bond caps. Under current law, tax-exempt bonds are only for first-time homebuyers and cannot be issued for refinancing.

Congress should pass legislation to reform the regulation of Government Sponsored Enterprises (GSEs) like Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. The President has called on Congress to pass legislation that strengthens the independent regulator of the GSEs and ensures their focus on the housing mission.

Congress should not increase taxes on any American. If Congress allows the President’s tax relief to expire, every income tax payer will face a rate increase.

Congress should approve the Colombia, Panama, and South Korea free-trade agreements. These trade agreements would level the playing field for American workers, farmers, and ranchers. Exports accounted for 40 percent of our economic growth last year and 12 percent of our GDP.

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