As former Rep. Mel Watt, D-N.C., takes over as director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency, housing and financial industry officials are watching for the changes he will likely bring to the office. As head of the FHFA, Watt will have direct oversight of mortgage companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which control more than 90% of new mortgages. Under Watt, the mortgage giants are expected to loosen restrictions on homeowners who wish to refinance.

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