Joyce Beatty Wants to Give You a Discount on Your Mortgage -- But First, a Counseling Course
The number of documents you have to read, understand, and sign when buying your first home can be not only overwhelming but intimidating. One could argue that nefarious business dealings combined with financial illiteracy contributed to the subprime mortgage crisis which led to the nationwide financial crisis and recession in 2009. That’s one of the reasons Congresswoman Joyce Beatty (D-OH) introduced the Housing Financial Literacy Act this month. The bill would give first-time homebuyers who complete a HUD-certified housing counseling course a discount on their Federal Housing Administration (FHA) mortgage insurance premium of 25 basis points (or 0.25%). “Right now, too many Americans lack the basic knowledge and know-how to fully understand the long-term financial obligations and implications of purchasing a home,” said Beatty, Co-Chair of the Congressional Financial and Economic Literacy Caucus. “Motivating first-time homebuyers to seek vital pre-purchase counseling and equipping them with the much-needed financial skills and tools to make informed financial decisions benefits their families, the surrounding neighborhood, and entire U.S. economy—and that is precisely why the Housing Financial Literacy Act is so desperately needed.” Beatty said that studies confirm that homebuyers who receive pre-purchase housing counseling are nearly one-third less likely to fall behind on their mortgage and thereby face a reduced risk of foreclosure. More here.