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Executive Perspectives Blog

The second half of the 20th century brought with it remarkable growth in homeownership. For the first four decades of the century, homeownership rates were relatively stable and remained below 50 percent, dropping as low as 44 percent in 1940. Following World War II, the rate of homeownership surged, propelled by the GI Bill, the institutionalization of the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage, and the creation of FHA, VA, and the GSEs.

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Fraud continues to threaten homebuyers, renters and the mortgage industry. The latest report from CoreLogic, a real estate information company, says fraud is on an upward trajectory and estimates that some 13,000 mortgage applications made during the second quarter had indications of fraud.

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Today Freddie Mac reported net income and comprehensive income of $2.3 billion for the third quarter of 2016. Our results strongly reflect our improving business fundamentals and competitiveness – higher purchase volumes, an eight-year best in credit quality and a continued decline in legacy assets.

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Today, the homeownership rate is less than 63 percent, the lowest rate in half a century. It has been declining for over a decade and experts are projecting it will continue to keep falling—perhaps even below 60 percent.

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The 21st century has been hard on utility bills. Average water rate hikes surged annually at twice the inflation rate between 2000 and 2012. Lower-income renters were spending 15-to-21 percent of their incomes on energy by 2011, says the Joint Center for Housing Studies. And this was before 2013, when severe droughts, winters and scorching summer heatwaves began rolling regularly across the country.

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Our Executive Perspectives feature insights from company leaders on key trends in housing finance and how Freddie Mac is supporting the nation's housing recovery.

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