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Volume 8 - Number 20

October 2, 2015

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GNMA Posts Record Quarter as VA Jumbos Drive MBS Issuance

Riding a wave of heavy purchase-mortgage activity, Ginnie Mae issuers produced a record $128.23 billion of single-family mortgage-backed securities during the third quarter of 2015, according to a new Inside FHA/VA Lending ranking and analysis. The third-quarter figure, which includes FHA home-equity conversion mortgage MBS, was up 6.5 percent from the second quarter of this year. The previous record was $125.68 billion, set back in the third quarter of 2009. Loan-level MBS data, which do not include HECMs and have truncated loan amounts, show hefty gains in purchase-mortgage activity that more than offset sharp declines in refinance business. The flow of FHA purchase mortgages jumped 37.7 percent from the second to the third quarter, and VA purchase mortgages were up 37.9 percent over the same period. Meanwhile, refinance volume fell ... [ 2 charts ]

MBA Chief Reveals Ongoing Talks Between Independent Shops, HUD

Certain unidentified independent mortgage bankers are in talks with the Department of Housing and Urban Development over alleged False Claims Act violations, according to a top mortgage industry executive. Speaking recently on the Internet radio program “Lykken on Lending,” Dave Stevens, president of the Mortgage Bankers Association and a former FHA commissioner, said the lenders are quietly negotiating and have avoided media attention, so far. On air, Stevens said he and a “certain group of individuals had met with HUD Secretary Julian Castro” to discuss the FCA complaints. The MBA official said the use of the FCA – which allows for treble damages – represents an “extraordinary overreach” by the government that is threatening the overall FHA program. Stevens did not name the lenders are or say how many there are, but he did mention an ...

HUD Slams loanDepot for Using Ineligible DPA Funds on FHA Loans

The Inspector General of the Department of Housing and Urban Development called for civil and administrative actions against loanDepot for allowing ineligible “gifts” on FHA-insured loans. Acting on a referral from HUD’s Quality Assurance Division, the IG focused on FHA loans originated by loanDepot that included downpayment assistance from the Golden State Finance Authority. A review of 75 loans endorsed from Oct. 1, 2013, to Jan. 31, 2015, determined that 62 loans involved gift funds that did not comply with FHA requirements. In addition, the privately held nonbank lender “inappropriately charged borrowers $25,700 in fees that were not customary or reasonable, as well as $46,510 in discount fees that did not represent the purpose of the fee,” the IG said. The IG blamed loanDepot’s overreliance on Golden State’s Platinum Downpayment Assistance Program as well as ...

2014 HMDA Data Show Huge Chunk of Higher-Priced FHA Loans

The majority of higher-priced first-lien loans in 2014 were FHA-insured, according to the latest Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data. Approximately 45 percent of FHA-insured, first-lien purchase mortgages had annual percentage rates in excess of the reporting threshold, similar to the percentage in the latter half of 2013, the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council noted. Higher-priced loans are those with APRs that exceed the average prime offer rate by at least 1.5 percentage points for first-lien loans and at least 3.5 percentage points for subordinate-lien loans. The data on the incidence of higher-priced lending show that about 8 percent of first-lien purchase loans originated in 2014 have APRs that exceed the loan-price reporting thresholds, up from about 5 percent in 2013, the FFIEC said. The higher APRs for FHA loans were due to a slight increase in ... [ 1 chart ]

VA Clarifies Handbook’s Effective Date, Modifications, Claims Filing

VA loan servicers have until Nov. 1, 2015, to review and comment on the new VA Servicer Handbook and ensure compliance with the established policy and guidelines. The servicer handbook combines guidance issued via circulars and news flashes over the years. In addition, the agency has started hosting biweekly servicer calls to update VA servicers on policy changes and new developments, according to Andrew Trevayne, assistant director of loan management with the VA Home Loan Guaranty Program. VA-guaranteed loans are serviced through the VA Loan Electronic Reporting Interface (VALERI) system. The handbook also discusses roles and responsibilities for VA loan-administration staff and servicers. It does not change or supersede any regulation or law affecting the loan program. Servicers may submit comments on the updated handbook to ...

Unique VA Lender Extends Service To Middle East Combat Zones

VA lender Michigan Mutual in Southfield, MI, gives new meaning to “service above and beyond,” which makes it unique among its VA peers. Michigan Mutual, a national wholesale mortgage lender, ramps up its service to members of the military by having a representative conduct yearly outreach to American soldiers in Afghanistan and Iraq. Every year, since 2009, Rick Roque, managing director at Michigan Mutual, has been volunteering to spend a few weeks conducting mortgage-related seminars for soldiers in U.S. bases in the two countries. During those seminars, Roque talks about the benefits of a VA-guaranteed mortgage loan for those thinking of purchasing a home after their deployment. “Soldiers in combat zones are constantly under severe stress and hardly have time to think about homeownership,” said Roque. “Their priority is survival and ...

FHA Prioritizes Certification, PACE, Delayed Claims Filing, MMI Fund

The FHA has a number of rulemakings in the regulatory pipeline and other policy topics related to mortgage origination and servicing, all lined for action in the fall. The program changes are geared towards FHA single-family priorities, such as expanding first-time homebuyers’ and underserved creditworthy borrowers’ access to credit, ensuring the long-term viability of FHA Mutual Mortgage Insurance Fund and making it easier to do business with the FHA. Agency data show that, as of July 31, 2015, first-time homebuyers accounted for 82 percent of FHA purchase loans compared to 72 percent in the prior year. FHA officials attributed the surge in purchase loans to the half percentage point reduction in the annual mortgage insurance premium, which they translated into a yearly savings of $900 for a household with an average mortgage-loan size of $180,000. On Sept. 15, the ...

USDA Spells Out Policy Changes, Delegated Servicing Underscored

Mortgage loans with a Section 502 guarantee are a great deal for first-time homebuyers in rural areas, said Michelle Corridon, deputy director of the Single Family Housing - Guaranteed Loan Division with the U.S. Department of Agricultures’ Rural Development. No downpayment is required on a 30-year fixed-rate, USDA-backed mortgage loan, Corridon noted. Loan closing is fast because closing is fully automated, she added. Approximately 99 percent of USDA lenders are using paperless, automated loan closing, for which they pay a certain fee. Loan-note guarantee is also available online. USDA loans are typically purchase transactions. Of these, 85 percent are first-time homebuyers. There are few refinances, Corridon noted. Approximately 10 percent of purchase loans are for new construction. The product caters to low- and moderate-income households in ...

FHA Clamps Down on Partial Claims Delay, Insists on Timely Submission

The FHA has revised the required time frame for mortgagees to submit the original promissory note associated with a partial claim and laid out the penalties for noncompliance. The guidance became effective on Sept. 1, 2015. On the same day, The Department of Housing and Urban Development issued letters demanding full reimbursement of all amounts associated with overdue partial-claim documents after Sept. 1. The guidance also reminded lenders of the procedures for preparing and submitting partial-claim documents to HUD’s loan-servicing contractor. Proper recordation and submission of partial-claim documentation will ensure HUD’s interest is protected, according to the guidance. Currently, FHA has a high volume of missing partial-claim documents due to lenders’ failure to follow rules for recording and submitting security instruments. The revised guidance also contains directions for executing partial-claim docs and reconciling ...

Around the Industry

HUD Announces New Mortgagee Compliance Manager. The Department of Housing and Urban Development has hired Information System & Networks Corp. (ISN) as its new mortgagee compliance manager. ISN took over from Michaelson, Connor & Boul, which was awarded the first MCM contract in 2010, when HUD reorganized its Management and Marketing (M&M) I and II programs under a new M&M III. As mortgage compliance manager, MCB performed real estate acquisition-to-disposition servicers for HUD, among other things. ISN effectively took over Oct. 1, assuming all pre- and post-conveyance activities including the following: requests for more time to convey; processing of occupied conveyances; approval of reimbursable expenses for preservation and protection, particularly amount in excess of allowable P&P expenses (including Home Equity Conversion Mortgages); and requests to ...


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TRID (Integrated Disclosures)
Uncertainty regarding "marketing service agreements"
Getting sued by HUD/DOJ for alleged underwriting violations
Declining loan volumes

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