If you’ve never heard of Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac it’s easy to assume they are characters from a children’s book or the names of your distant cousins from the backcountry. It’s not really until you’re ready to buy a home that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac start to mean something.
Below is a breakdown of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and why US homebuyers should care about them.
Both Fannie Mae and Fannie Mac are acronyms for FNMA and FHLMC.
Fannie Mae — (FNMA) Federal National Mortgage Association. (Est. 1938)
Freddie Mac — (FHLMC) Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation. (Est. 1970)
The official (obnoxiously long) titles above were permanently changed to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac in the late 90s but don’t let their playful names deceive you — Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac represent two separate and complex enterprises that the U.S. government created in response to the Great Depression to help boost the housing market.
While they both mean many things for many different stakeholders, homebuyers should know that it is these two enterprises that guarantee about $5 trillion in loans for people like you and me, who don’t have $300,000 laying around to put down on a home.
(Thanks Fran and Fred).
Have more questions on Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac? Please contact me today — I can help!