Senate Confirms Trump’s Nomination for FHA Commissioner

Today, by a vote of 74-23, the U.S. Senate confirmed President Donald Trump’s nomination of Brian D. Montgomery to serve as assistant secretary of housing at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and commissioner of the Federal Housing Administration (FHA).

Montgomery’s confirmation marks his second term as assistant secretary for housing and FHA commissioner at HUD. He previously held the job under President George W. Bush and stayed on for six months after President Barack Obama’s inauguration.

“Brian brings a wealth of housing knowledge and experience to HUD, having held this position in two previous administrations, and we are excited to welcome him back to the agency,” says Ben Carson, HUD secretary. “FHA’s work is critical to HUD’s mission of advancing sustainable homeownership opportunities and quality affordable housing for all Americans. Brian understands this better than anyone and will be ready on day one to address the challenges of today’s housing market.”

“I’m honored to have the opportunity to serve with Secretary Carson and the team at HUD to further equal access to affordable rental housing and homeownership opportunities and seek solutions to restore vitality to the housing market,” Montgomery says.

According to HUD, Montgomery has also held several other top positions throughout the government and housing industry, including co-founder and partner at the Collingwood Group; deputy assistant to the president from 2001 to 2003, including as secretary to the cabinet from 2003 to 2005; and board member on the Federal Housing Finance Board, the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008 Oversight Board, and NeighborWorks America Board.

Montgomery was nominated by Trump on Sept. 12, 2017. Today’s full Senate vote comes six months after the Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee approved Montgomery’s nomination. The full text of his congressional testimony can be found here.

Notably, Montgomery is a proponent of HUD’s Home Equity Conversion Mortgage (HECM) program, which he helped launch during his first go-around as FHA commissioner. In testimony before Congress in February 2007, he said, “Our HECM program shouldn’t just allow seniors to take cash out of their current homes but should permit them to move to housing that better meets their needs as they age.”

In response to the news, Elizabeth Mendenhall, president of the National Association of Realtors, says in a statement, “Brian Montgomery served as Federal Housing Administration commissioner during one of the most critical periods in the history of America’s housing industry. He has shown the ability to lead and understands the essential role the FHA plays in addressing affordability and facilitating homeownership in the U.S., particularly for first-time home buyers.”

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