Fannie Mae is reaching out to Internet surfers.
The giant housing-finance agency has placed mortgage information for potential borrowers on the World Wide Web, a network that allows computer users to interact with information on the screen.
Fannie has placed a Home Page site on the Web. The page "allows users to point and click on desired words, phrases, or images on the computer screen, which generates another optional window with more available information."
This capability allows users to choose specific kinds of information they are seeking, whether it is about Fannie Mae's operations and how to do business with the company, or about the mortgage market and how to find a lender and apply for a loan.
Frank Raines, Fannie Mae's vice chairman, said the company would expand the material available through the Home Page. He sees the Internet as a way to conduct more business with lenders as well as with consumers.
To use the Internet, consumers need a computer, a modem, and some kind of gateway into the system. Popular data base services such as Compuserve and America Online offer these gateways, and many others are available through universities and public libraries.
Some lenders have already been offering mortgages on-line through Compuserve and others. The first mortgage ever made over the Internet was said to have been made by American Finance and Investment Inc. through Real Estate Fair, also on the World Wide Web.
The Internet address for Fannie's Home Page is: http:www.fanniemae.com.