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The FHA Single-Family Insurance Program: Performing a Needed Role in the Housing Finance Market

Report Acceptance Date: 
December 2012 (53 pages)
Posted Date:   
December 31, 2012

In laying out the Federal Housing Administration's (FHA's) mission in the single-family mortgage market and in presenting its historical role in meeting immediate and emerging challenges over its history, this paper serves as a useful foundation for considering FHA’s future role in housing finance as both institutional and regulatory reforms are debated. The paper focuses on the historical and ongoing role of FHA mortgage insurance in sustaining access to mortgage credit, stabilizing housing markets, and expanding sustainable homeownership opportunities. In so doing, it provides useful facts, descriptions of policies undertaken, and information that can inform debates about FHA’s appropriate role going forward. In performing its historical role, FHA has insured more than 41 million mortgages since its inception in 1934.