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Housing Stimulus and Stabilization Will Help Economic Recovery

WASHINGTON, February 12, 2009

The following is a statement by National Association of Realtors® President Charles McMillan:

"The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act is important for the U.S. economy and contains some important housing provisions. Eliminating the repayment provision in the $7,500 first-time home buyer tax credit will help bring buyers to the market and reduce housing inventory. NAR has been advocating that this provision be improved - the change will stimulate more than 200,000 additional home sales, which will help stabilize home values.

"Reinstating the higher loan limits for FHA, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac for mortgages in high-cost areas is also important and will help reduce inventory and improve liquidity in the overall mortgage market. The allocation of resources for neighborhood stabilization efforts to help communities purchase and rehabilitate foreclosed and vacant properties is also very promising for the housing market. This funding will help protect communities across the country and preserve home values from further decline.

"As the leading advocate for homeowners and the real estate industry, NAR will continue to address issues facing Americans who are trying to purchase a home, protect their current home or preserve investment opportunities in residential and commercial properties. NAR recognizes the efforts of the members of Congress who understand that without a housing recovery, an overall economic recovery is impossible.

"NAR believes that positive steps are being taken to improve the housing market and will continue to work with President Obama, Congress and regulators to make housing stabilization a key component of any federal recovery plans."

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