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The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) has helped millions (of otherwise unqualified borrowers) purchase homes by insuring private lenders against losses from defaults on single-family mortgages. In recent years, FHA has experienced a dramatic increase in its market role due, in part, to the contraction of other mortgage market segments. The increased reliance on FHA mortgage insurance highlights the need for FHA to ensure that it has the proper controls in place to minimize financial risks while meeting the housing needs of borrowers.

This report discusses (1) changes in the financial condition of FHA’s fund used to insure mortgages—the Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund (Fund)—and the budgetary implications of these changes; (2) how FHA evaluates the financial condition of the Fund; and (3) steps FHA has taken to assess and manage risks.

This Report is drawn from a recent report on FHA’s oversight capacity (GAO-12-15) as well as a report issued in September 2010 on the financial condition of the Fund (GAO-10-827R). GAO also obtained updated information on the status of the Fund from the recently issued actuarial report on the Fund

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