Duty to Serve
As part of the Federal Housing Finance Agency's (FHFA) final rule for Duty to Serve, Freddie Mac has developed a multi-pronged plan to meet the needs of the following underserved communities:
- Manufactured housing
- Affordable housing preservation
- Rural housing
Each GSE has submitted its proposed plans to FHFA and we welcome your input. You can read and comment on the plans by visiting FHFA's web site. If you have questions about Duty to Serve, please contact 1-800-FREDDIE (option 2)
About Freddie Mac
- What does Freddie Mac do?
Freddie Mac was chartered by Congress in 1970 to keep money flowing to mortgage lenders in support of homeownership and rental housing. Our statutory mission is to provide liquidity, stability and affordability to the U.S. housing market. Learn more about our business and our role in the nation’s housing market.
- How is Freddie Mac working to build a better housing finance system?
Freddie Mac is focused on building a better housing finance system by supporting the housing market daily, continuously improving our business, and innovating for the future. We continue to demonstrate progress in building a profitable, sustainable business model that will meet the needs of the nation and all the communities we serve in the years to come.
- Does Freddie Mac make loans to consumers?
No. Freddie Mac does not make loans directly to homebuyers. Our primary business business is to purchase loans from lenders to replenish their supply of funds so that they can make more mortgage loans to other borrowers. Learn more about Freddie Mac's role in helping families own or rent a home.
- What is the secondary mortgage market?
If you think of America's mortgage lenders as retail stores where people go to get mortgages, the secondary mortgage market is their supplier. Freddie Mac, one of the biggest buyers of home mortgages in the United States, is considered a secondary market conduit between mortgage lenders and investors. View our informational video to learn more about what we do and how we do it.
- Where can I find information about Freddie Mac's businesses?
Freddie Mac has three core business lines that play a critical role in financing affordable housing for America's families: Single-Family, Multifamily and Capital Markets.
- Where can I learn more about Freddie Mac's foreclosed properties?
HomeSteps®, the real estate sales unit of Freddie Mac, offers all types of homes for sale across the country, including apartment buildings, with some attractive incentives. Learn more about HomeSteps, the buying process, offers and incentives, investors and more.
- Who regulates Freddie Mac?
Help for Homebuyers, Homeowners & Renters
- Does Freddie Mac own my loan?
You can find out if Freddie Mac owns your loan by using our self-service loan look-up tool.
- Why did I receive a letter stating that Freddie Mac purchased my home?
You received this letter because Freddie Mac has purchased your loan as an investor and, by law, we are required to inform you. This letter is sent to you for informational purposes only. No action is required on your part and the sale does not affect any term, payment, or condition of your mortgage. Get the answers to the most frequently asked questions regarding this letter.
- I'd like to learn more about Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI), where should I start?
PMI is an insurance policy that protects the lender if you are unable to pay your mortgage. It's a monthly fee, rolled into your mortgage payment, that is required for all conforming, conventional loans that have down payments of less than 20%. Get the answers to the most frequently asked questions asked about PMI.
- How do I get a mortgage?
If you're looking to buy a home, your first step is to call your lender to discuss the mortgage application process. Learn more about finding and working with your lender.
- Where can I learn about the Home Affordable Refinance Program (HARP®)?
HARP, a federal program launched in 2009, was designed to help homeowners who owe more on their mortgage than their home is worth take advantage of lower mortgage rates and other refinance benefits. Learn more about the program and see if it’s right for you.
- Who do I contact for mortgage help?
If you need help with your mortgage, there are many parties who can help you, including your lender, housing counselors, Freddie Mac Borrower Help Centers and others. Learn more about your options and ways to prepare for your discussion.
- How do I buy a HomeSteps® home?
- I'm wondering whether it makes more sense for me to continue to rent or to own a home. Is there a tool that can help me figure that out?
The decision whether to rent or own your home depends on your personal circumstances and preferences. However, Freddie Mac's Rent vs. Buy calculator can help you assess the different financial impacts of renting and owning, using your own financial information. You’ll find that calculator and many more valuable resources on My Home by Freddie Mac®
Doing Business with Freddie Mac
- How do I become a Freddie Mac Single-Family Seller/Servicer?
To become a Freddie Mac Single-Family Seller/Servicer, you'll need to follow a series of steps that include determining your eligibility, completing the pre-application form and your customized application online.
- How do I get the latest emails on Single-Family news, updates, alerts and new training/education opportunities?
Visit our Single-Family News Center to get current news on doing business with Freddie Mac, including originating and underwriting, selling and delivering, servicing, recent notices and more.
- How do I access the online version of Freddie Mac's Single-Family Seller/Servicer Guide?
The online version of our Guide is made available to you by Freddie Mac in cooperation with AllRegs. Please bookmark this page for future reference.
- Am I able to qualify a borrower when they have only been self-employed for one year?
Yes. When the borrower has been self-employed for less than two years, you must document the following:
- The borrower has a two-year history of receipt of income at the same or greater level.
- You considered the borrower's experience in the business before considering the income for qualifying purposes.
- The borrower's federal tax returns reflect at least one year of self-employment income.
- May I allow the borrower to pay off or pay down debt to qualify for the mortgage? If so, do these accounts need to be closed?
Yes. You must document the payoff or pay down of the debts and the source of the funds used in the mortgage file. These accounts are not required to be closed.
- May I accept future income when the borrower is a professional (for example, teacher, doctor or attorney)?
No. Future income is not allowed. We consider stable monthly income as the borrower's verified gross monthly income from all acceptable and verifiable sources.
- Is there a minimum square footage requirement on manufactured homes?
Yes. The manufactured home must be at least 12 feet wide and have a minimum gross of 600 square feet of living area.
- The borrower has a history of receiving bonus income, but when the employer completes the Verification of Employment, it does not state whether the bonus is likely to be awarded in the future. May I use this income if I can document a two-year history of receipt?
Yes. In many instances, an employer may feel uncomfortable noting that bonus or overtime income will continue due to future business decisions. Therefore, for all income, you may consider the income for qualifying the borrower, provided you do not have knowledge, information or documentation that contradicts a reasonable expectation of continuance or probability of consistent receipt over at least the next three years.
- Does a co-borrower who doesn't live in the home have to be a relative of the borrower?
No. The non-occupant co-borrower can be anyone who is willing to meet the requirements of Freddie Mac's Seller/Servicer Guide.
- How do I become a Freddie Mac Multifamily Seller/Servicer?
To become a Freddie Mac Multifamily Seller/Servicer, you'll need to meet our eligibility standards, among other criteria, to become part of our highly-selective network of experienced multifamily lenders and servicers.
- How do I get the latest emails on Multifamily news, updates, alerts and new training/education opportunities?
Visit Freddie Mac Multifamily's Customer News site to get current news on doing business with Freddie Mac, including originating and underwriting, selling and delivering, servicing, recent notices and more.
- How do I access the online version of the Multifamily Seller/Servicer Guide?
- What is Multifamily's "prior-approval model" for underwriting and why is it important?
Each loan we buy goes through our in-house Underwriting & Credit team, who strictly adhere to a core set of principles when making credit decisions and focus on quality throughout the loan life cycle. Even with this rigor, team members have the flexibility and expertise to collaborate across the company and with our customers to craft solutions to achieve results.
- What is Multifamily's approach to loan servicing?
Freddie Mac Multifamily's servicing approach is unique in the industry and focuses on creating a positive customer experience throughout the life of each loan. The key features promote consistency, efficiency, transparency, and flexibility:
- A single servicing standard for all loans that we buy, regardless of whether they're securitized or held in our portfolio
- Standard form loan documents for each type of loan that we buy
- A streamlined consent process around any property or loan changes that the borrower wants to make and our web-based Consent Request Tracker, which, for securitized loans, lets multiple servicing parties track any given deal through the consent process
- Designated chief servicing officer at each primary servicer company
- One legal firm as a single point of contact for nearly all of the borrower's requests that require legal review
For details, go to the Freddie Mac Multifamily Seller/Servicer Guide.
- How does Multifamily define workforce housing?
Multifamily workforce housing is unsubsidized multifamily housing that's affordable to most low- and middle-income households. Find a more detailed definition in our fact sheet.
- What's the difference between capped and uncapped multifamily purchase volume?
Our conservator, the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA), caps Freddie Mac's and Fannie Mae's multifamily purchase volume each year. The 2017 cap was set at $36.5 billion; if market conditions warrant, FHFA will adjust the cap following a quarterly review. However, to better support underserved markets, loans on the following types of properties are excluded from the cap:
- Targeted affordable (subsidized) housing
- Affordable units in standard markets
- Affordable units in high-cost or very high-cost markets
- Rural housing
- Small multifamily properties (5 to 50 units)
- Manufactured housing communities
- Seniors assisted-living housing
Also excluded are loans that finance energy- or water-efficiency improvements.
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