What is the Fannie Mae Lookup Tool and who is Fannie Mae?

Fannie Mae's Loan Lookup Tool is the first step in providing mortgage help for homeowners with a Fannie Mae-owned loan.  If you are impacted by housing affordability or other qualifying mortgage challenges, you may apply for mortgage programs that can provide the necessary aid. This may include payment relief, including a forbearance plan or loan modification.

You can use the self-service Fannie Mae Lookup Tool here: 


Who is Fannie Mae?

Fannie Mae does not originate mortgage loans but keeps funds flowing to lenders. It does this by purchasing or guaranteeing home loans issued by banks, thrifts, credit unions, and other financial institutions. 

Fannie Mae is one of two major purchasers of mortgages in the secondary market. The other is the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation, also called Freddie Mac, which is also a GSE chartered by Congress.

After Fannie Mae purchases mortgages on the secondary market, it can pool them to form a mortgage-backed security (MBS). An MBS is an asset-backed security secured by a mortgage or pool of mortgages. It guarantees principal and interest payments on its MBSs. Fannie Mae's mortgage-backed securities are then purchased by institutions like insurance companies, pension funds, and investment banks.

Fannie Mae also has its own portfolio, called a retained portfolio, to invest in its own and other institutions' mortgage-backed securities. It issues debt, called agency debt, to fund this retained portfolio.

Fannie Mae creates "liquidity" for mortgage lenders by investing in the mortgage market, allowing them to fund additional mortgages. For example, in 2021, Fannie Mae supplied $1.4 trillion in liquidity to the mortgage market, helping Americans buy, refinance, or rent about 5.5 million homes.

Fannie Mae has been traded publicly since 1968 on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). However, in 2010, following the Great Recession and its impact on the housing market, Fannie Mae failed to meet the minimum closing price mandated by the NYSE, so it was forced to delist its shares. Thus, Fannie Mae now trades over the counter.

In the latter half of 2008, the government took over Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac through a conservatorship of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA). The U.S. Treasury supplied the $191 billion to keep both agencies solvent, an amount since repaid.

The terms dictating Fannie Mae's dividend obligations were changed in 2012 so that the U.S. Treasury could claim any profits at the end of each quarter and provide capital if there was a deficit.

However, in 2019, the Treasury and FHFA said that both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac could once again keep their earnings to shore up their capital reserves of $25 billion and $20 billion, respectively. This was a move toward transitioning the two out of conservatorship.

* Specific loan program availability and requirements may vary. Please get in touch with the mortgage advisor for more information.

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