Legislative Update with Jay Kruse
by Jay Kruse
Chief Advocacy Officer
6/11/2019

Good Morning!

 

Senator Thune Aims to Increase Pool of Appraisers.

Last Friday, South Dakota Senator John Thune introduced the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) Appraiser Eligibility Expansion Act. This legislation would update the law to give licensed residential appraisers the ability to conduct appraisals on FHA properties. Currently, unlike certified appraisers, licensed residential appraisers are not allowed to perform appraisals on FHA properties.

 

CUAD was fortunate enough to work with Sen. Thune’s staff as the bill was being written. We surveyed credit unions across both North and South Dakota to gauge the current appraisal process related to FHA mortgages. In many areas across the Dakotas, credit unions are experiencing increased wait times and expenses due to the lack of appraiser availability. Availability issues become even more prevalent in our most rural areas, leaving some credit unions searching for options.

 

While Senator Thune’s bill won’t alleviate all of our availability issues, it is definitely a step in the right direction. The pool of FHA appraisers should increase as a result of this bill without placing any additional onerous educational requirements on the appraiser, which is a win/win. Appraisal availability will continue to be an important issue for us. We appreciate Senator Thune and his staff for considering our input and including credit unions in the discussion as we continue to search for ways to increase the number of eligible appraisers in the Dakotas.

 

In addition to Thune, S. 1722 is also cosponsored by Senators John Hoeven (R-ND), Mike Rounds (R-SD), Jon Tester (D-MT), Angus King (I-ME), and Tina Smith (D-MN).

 

Flood Insurance Extended Six Months.

The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) was originally set to expire on May 31, but was extended an additional two weeks, until June 14th. Last week the United States House of Representatives followed the Senate and approved H.R. 2157, which is a disaster relief bill that also includes an extension of the NFIP until September 30, 2019. President Trump quickly signed the bill into law.

 

This six-month extension is not the ideal fix we were hoping for; however, we will continue to advocate Congress and the powers that be to find a long-term solution to enhance affordability and restore certainty to the market.

 

If you have any questions regarding these or other advocacy issues, please do not hesitate to contact me.

 

 

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