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Volume 29 - Number 50

January 10, 2013

CFPB Gives Blanket ‘Qualified Mortgage’ Coverage To Agency Mortgages, Safe Harbor for Lenders

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau this week spread a huge safety net under the agency mortgage market, ruling that loans deemed suitable for Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, the FHA and the Veterans Administration will be “qualified mortgages” that provide strong protection against litigation for mortgage lenders. The CFPB’s long-awaited ability-to-repay final rule provides a safe harbor for loans that meet its QM definition and also are not considered “higher-priced mortgages” under an older Truth in Lending Act regulation promulgated by the Federal Reserve back in 2008. That rule classifies first mortgages as higher-priced if the annual percentage rate exceeds the average offered rate for comparable loans by 1.5 percentage points or more. Generally, the CFPB final rule defines...

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Poll

What is it going to take to convince lenders to loosen the credit box (i.e., remove underwriting overlays)?

The recent rep and warranty changes announced by the Federal Housing Finance Agency should go a long way in protecting lenders from future buybacks and help expand mortgage credit.

17%

There won’t be any significant elimination of underwriting overlays until the government stops seeking huge mortgage-related penalties and settlements from lenders.

72%

There shouldn’t be any expansion of the mortgage credit box since looser underwriting is what caused the recent mortgage crisis.

11%

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