The following is a statement by National Association of Realtors® President Ron Phipps.
“The National Association of Realtors® is pleased that a continuing resolution passed by Congress today included a short-term extension of the National Flood Insurance Program, but still believes a longer term extension is needed to ensure access to affordable flood insurance for millions of homeowners.
“As the leading advocate for homeownership and housing issues, NAR strongly supports the NFIP and believes that a 5-year extension of the program’s authority to issue flood insurance is essential to a properly functioning real estate market.
“The NFIP was created because of the lack of available and affordable flood insurance in the private market, which remains true today, and serves as an alternative to expensive taxpayer-funded disaster relief for flood victims. The program writes and renews flood insurance policies for more than 5.6 million home and business owners in 21,000 communities across the country.
“Realtors® are hopeful that members of Congress will come together on this issue and reauthorize the program before the continuing resolution expires on November 18, so that taxpaying families won’t have to go without essential flood protection and the housing market is provided with the certainty it needs for a recovery.
“It is unfortunate that Congress missed an opportunity to further assist the housing market recovery by extending higher mortgage loan limits for the Federal Housing Administration and government-sponsored enterprises Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. The lack of mortgage availability is already a real concern and lowering the loan limits will only further restrict liquidity for creditworthy homebuyers.”