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The largest boom in new apartment construction in three decades is doing little to slow rent increases or ease affordability concerns for renters across the country, a new report finds.
A record number of renters are spending more than 30% of their incomes on rent—a ratio that economists consider financially burdensome, according to a report released Wednesday by Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies. The report, “America’s Rental Housing: Expanding Options for Diverse and Growing Demand,” says more than 21 million households are burdened by how much they pay in rent, up from fewer than 15 million in 2001.
Nearly half of renters are paying more than 30% of their incomes in rent, the report says. While that is a slight improvement from 2011, it remains above where it has been for most of the last 13 years.
Read the full article in Wall Street Journal: http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2015/12/09/nearly-half-of-renters-put-too-much-toward-rent/
The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) has announced the agency’s new schedule of loan limits for 2016. These loan limits are effective for case numbers assigned on or after Jan. 1, 2016, and will remain in effect through the end of the year.
Due to changes in housing prices, the maximum loan limits for forward mortgages increased in 188 counties. There were no areas with a decrease in the maximum loan limits for forward mortgages.
Each year, FHA recalculates its loan limits based on 115 percent of the median house price in the area. For counties, or equivalent, located in Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) the limit for all areas in the MSA is calculated based on the highest cost county.
There is no change to the FHA national loan limit “ceiling” which remains at $625,500 and the “floor” which remains at $271,050. FHA’s minimum national loan limit “floor” is set at 65 percent of the national conforming loan limit of $417,000. The floor applies to those areas where 115 percent of the median home price is less than 65 percent of the national conforming loan limit.
Any area where the loan limit exceeds the “floor” is considered a high cost area. The maximum FHA loan limit “ceiling” for high cost areas is 150 percent of the national conforming limit.