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Volume 11 - Number 21

October 19, 2018

Industry Calls for Removal of Antiquated USDA Interest-Rate Cap

Mortgage lenders are urging the U.S. Department of Agriculture/Rural Housing Service to eliminate the current interest-rate cap on single-family USDA loans because it has long outlived its usefulness. RHS is reevaluating the interest-rate cap to determine whether it should be modified to allow borrowers who are ineligible for a conventional mortgage to obtain affordable financing for a home purchase, home rehabilitation or a streamline refinance. Lenders, however, argue that the cap is unrealistic under current market conditions. The agency is currently seeking comment on possible changes. Congress authorized RHS in 1990 to establish a maximum interest rate to help spur loan origination in eligible rural areas. The interest-rate cap is pegged to the current Fannie Mae posted yield for 90-day delivery plus 1 percent for 30-year fixed-rate conventional loans, rounded to the nearest quarter of ...

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