Bush Signs Housing Bill to Provide Mortgage Relief

By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 30, 2008 10:11 AM CDT
In this July 13, 2008 file photo, Freddie Mac Corporate Office are seen in McLean, Va. Rescue legislation passed today, aimed at helping 400,000 strapped homeowners avoid foreclosure and to prevent troubled...   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais, file)
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(Newser) – President Bush today signed the massive housing bill intended to provide mortgage relief for 400,000 struggling homeowners and stabilize financial markets. The measure, signed without the ususal fanfare, is one he earlier threatened to veto. Regarded as the most significant housing legislation in decades, it lets homeowners who cannot afford their payments refinance into more affordable government-backed loans rather than lose their homes.

It offers a temporary financial lifeline to troubled mortgage companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and tightens controls over the two government-sponsored businesses. It also tightens mortgage regulations, requiring lenders to show how high a borrower's payment could get under the terms of his mortgage.