Legislation that includes reforms to current Federal Housing Administration restrictions on condominium financing has passed in the U.S. Senate and will be sent to President Obama for final approval, reports HousingWire staffer Kelsey Ramirez.

The Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act, will make the Federal Housing Administration’s recertification process much easier, and it will lower the FHA’s current owner-occupancy requirement from 50% to 35%. The FHA would also be required to replace existing policy on transfer fees with the less-restrictive model already in place at the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

The bill was previously passed in the House of Representatives by unanimous vote in February.

The National Association of Realtors supports the bill. NAR president Tom Salomone outlined the opportunity. "Condominiums often represent an affordable option that's just right for first-time and low-to-moderate income homebuyers. Unfortunately, overly burdensome restrictions on condo financing have for too long put that option out of reach for many creditworthy borrowers.”

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