New flood insurance policies aren’t currently available because Congress failed to reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program — generally the only source of the insurance for consumers — before it went on recess last month. While Congress is expected to pass some kind of extension soon, those looking to buy homes in areas at high risk of flood may still be wondering whether they’ll be able to get a mortgage in the meantime if flood insurance is a requirement. This month, Fannie Mae, which provides financing to the mortgage market by buying the loans from lenders, sent this letter to lenders it works with. In the letter, Fannie Mae said, “to help ensure the continued availability of mortgage financing to borrowers seeking to purchase properties located in Special Flood Hazard Areas,” it would buy loans secured by properties in those areas, even if there was no active flood insurance policy as long as certain conditions were met.

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