Millions of homeowners facing foreclosure, first-time buyers and homebuyers who have been unable to secure loans will be among the primary beneficiaries of President Barack Obama’s $75 billion housing rescue plan, according to the head of Ventura County’s largest residential brokerage company.
Brian Troop, president of Troop Real Estate, also said the recently unveiled Housing Affordability and Stability Plan could lend a major boost to the real estate and mortgage industries.
“With respect to the latter, the plan’s provision of giving first-time buyers an $8,000 tax credit for buying a home [in] 2009 is a fantastic incentive,” Troop said. “The first-time buyer does not have to pay back the credit. It is free money to them.”
Troop also emphasized that the plan would raise Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac borrowing limits, allowing more borrowers to obtain credit at lower rates.
The plan calls for the Treasury Department to inject a total of $200 billion into Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which will allow them to buy more mortgages from lenders.
This “will make additional funds available for home mortgages, which will help loosen up the credit markets,” said Troop, who believes things have already hit bottom for the low end of the housing market in Ventura County.
Unplugging the credit pipeline will also work wonders for housing affordability, Troop said. He added that record-low interest rates and low home prices have nearly doubled affordability, which has risen to 59 percent of all households in California from 33 percent a year ago.
“In many cases, it is less expensive to own a home than to rent today. First time buyers are being approached through our marketing and seminars that let them know now is the time to buy,” Troop said.