On January 8, several members of AAR staff participated in a phone call with representatives from the Fair Housing Finance Agency (“FHFA”) to discuss nationwide difficulties experienced with Fannie Mae property valuations in conjunction with distressed property sales. Joining on the call were representatives from the National Association of REALTORS®, as well as representatives from various state REALTOR® organizations including California, Massachusetts and Illinois.
The call provided the participants an opportunity to share with FHFA our various concerns regarding the manner in which Fannie Mae values distressed properties and also the opportunity to provide specific examples in which Fannie Mae declined to approve a short sale, requiring that the seller secure a purchase offer far in excess of the property’s fair market value. While future discussions will be forthcoming, the participants contemplated ways in which Fannie Mae can address its systemic valuation difficulties and better take into consideration the valuation documentation frequently submitted by the borrower and their agent, such as a comparative market analysis and the property’s listing history. FHFA appreciated this issue being brought to its attention and indicated a desire to work further with REALTORS® to reach a mutually beneficial resolution.
As we continue our conversations with FHFA regarding Fannie Mae, we’ll be sure to keep you informed of our progress. FHFA indicated they would further research the matter using the materials provided by the participants on this phone call.