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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release July 29, 1998


Today, I am pleased to sign into law S. 318, the Homeowners Protection Act, which will save many American families thousands of dollars over the lifetime of their home mortgages. This bill will enable homeowners to cancel private mortgage insurance ("PMI") that they no longer need and make sure they receive full disclosure of their right to cancel.

Mortgage insurance has helped expand homeownership by allowing homeowners to make lower down-payments. But far too many homeowners continue to pay for mortgage insurance long after they have built enough equity so that the lender has little risk of loss. This bill would address that problem by making sure that homeowners have the right to cancel PMI, or by making that cancellation automatic, when homeowners build up enough equity in their homes. For a family that buys a $160,000 home, this bill would ensure savings of $1,600 if they do not move or refinance for 15 years.

Since I took office, homeownership has climbed to its highest rate in American history. But, now is not a time to rest. I have set a national goal of helping 8 million new families move into homes of their own by the year 2000. Lowering the cost of homeownership is one more way we are helping America's working families. That is why I am pleased to sign this homeowner- and consumer-friendly legislation.