Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae are common names associated with federal lending and home loans. They have offerings that stem from no down payment home loans to helping dislocated residents of disaster areas, to providing assistance to the elderly. If you are any age and are considering a home loan, you’re struggling with mortgage payments and need assistance, or you’re elderly and cannot afford repairs on your home, one of these entities may be able to assist.
Who Are Fannie, Freddie and Ginnie?
The Federal National Mortgage Association (FNMA), better known as Fannie Mae, and the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (FHLMC), better known as Freddie Mac, are government sponsored entities (GSEs). Fannie Mae was originally a federal user established in 1938. In 1968, however, Congress passed legislation enabling the user to become a private enterprise. Freddie Mac was birthed in 1970 for the purpose of expanding the secondary mortgage market.
Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are private corporations owned by shareholders. The funding for their operations is achieved through the sale of mortgage-backed securities (MBS), which are sold on the open stock market. In contrast, the Government National Mortgage Association (GNMA), better known as Ginnie Mae, is owned, operated and insured by the U.S. Government. Created in 1968, Ginnie Mae’s mission is basically the same as Fannie and Freddie. The main difference is that Ginnie’s operations do not depend on the sale of MBS for funding. Ginnie sponsored loans are fully backed by the U.S. Government.
The purpose of the three agencies is to buy mortgages on the secondary market to free up funding for banks and lenders to make more home loans. They don’t directly provide loans to borrowers. Instead, they buy mortgages from primary lending institutions that meet their lending standards.
Many lenders receive funding for mortgages from one of these agencies. The advantages of secondary lenders are that loans can be made with lower interest rates, and money is easily moved to enable anyone anywhere in the U.S. to obtain a mortgage, as long as they meet certain criteria.
What Do Fannie, Freddie and Ginnie Have to offer?
Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae all fall under the oversight of the U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) department. Generally, their charters are the same. They free up funding for primary lenders to make more home loans. In concert, they make housing more affordable to those who may not necessarily qualify for prime loans. Their overall mission is to assist single families, support and provide assistance to housing and neighborhood development, and generate capital in the open stock market. Their missions include making home ownership and rental housing more accessible and affordable.
Who Do Fannie, Freddie and Ginnie Offer It to?
You may become a recipient of products and services provided by Fannie, Freddie or Ginnie. One of the primary factors for consideration is your income and the geographic location in which you want to live or buy a home. If you are low- to moderate-income, you may be eligible for a no down payment home loan or low rent housing. You may be more qualified to obtain a home loan if you want to buy a home in a government designated area. These are typically areas with a significantly lower population than a metropolitan city; although, there may be other qualifications.
How does all this work? If you’re interested in buying a home, go to the Fannie, Freddie or Ginnie website and look for the link that takes you into a section about finding a lender. Follow the instructions to find a qualified lender. If you’re looking for an affordable rental, go to either website at FannieMae or FreddieMac and look for Support for renters or something about renting.
If you want to see all offerings available from each, go to the govloans website. If you’re a farmer, you’ll want to select Agriculture. For small business, you’ll want to make the Business selection. If your living situation was impacted by a disaster, like Hurricane Katrina, then you would select Disaster Relief. If you’re a Veteran, you’ll want to select Veteran. For all housing offerings, select Housing. Regardless of your home situation, Fannie Freddie or Ginnie may be able to help.