Legislation

Browse articles from all of our Newsletters related to Legislation.

August 29, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

Views Sought on Draft Appraiser Requirements

The Department of Housing and Urban Development is requesting feedback from stakeholders regarding proposed policy drafts covering appraiser eligibility and oversight, and conducting appraisals, among other things. The documents will be part of the FHA’s Single-Family Housing Policy Handbook, a consolidated and authoritative agency handbook that will make it easier for stakeholders to do business with the FHA. The drafts also cover appraiser requirements for performing an FHA appraisal, including property eligibility requirements for Title II forward and reverse mortgages, as well as forms and data delivery requirements. Comments must be submitted by Sept. 2, 2014. The Single-Family Policy handbook is a multi-phased initiative to develop a single, comprehensive source for FHA single-family housing policy using clear and direct language and an improved organization structure. In fall 2013, the FHA posted its first draft section, Application Though Endorsement for Title II Forward Mortgages. The FHA is finalizing ...


August 22, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Time to Adjust Before HMDA Reporting Expands

In July, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau proposed adding 40 new data fields for collection under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act. Industry attorneys advised lenders to look at their current operations through the data fields the CFPB will likely see and make adjustments before the federal regulator completes new in-depth analysis. Warren Traiger, counsel at the law firm of BuckleySandler, said the new HMDA data will be a fair lending “game changer” ...


August 18, 2014 - Inside the CFPB

Worth Noting/Comments Due This Week/Vendor Update

CFPB Making Its Presence Felt Among Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac Servicers. Fannie Mae’s latest earning filing indicates the CFPB and/or the New York State Department of Financial Services have been reviewing the activities of Fannie Mae’s three largest non-depository servicers (which would be Nationstar, Ocwen and possibly Quicken Loans, according to the latest ranking by Inside Mortgage Finance, an affiliated publication). The scrutiny of Quicken Loans seems to be a new development. The bureau would not comment. Meanwhile, during the first half of 2014, Freddie Mac said in its second quarter earnings announcement that it implemented requirements for its seller/ servicers in response to some final rules from the CFPB, including rules concerning the requirements for borrowers’ ability to ...


August 18, 2014 - Inside the CFPB

CFPB Mortgage Rule Having More Effect on Jumbo, Nontraditional

The Federal Reserve’s latest senior loan officer survey found the CFPB’s ability-to-repay/qualified mortgage rule is not having much of an effect on the conforming mortgage market but is being felt in the jumbo and nontraditional spaces. The July survey included a set of three special questions on the effects on the approval rates for home-purchase loans of the ATR and QM standards under the Truth in Lending Act, which came into effect early this year. The first question asks respondents to indicate the extent to which the ATR/QM rule is affecting the likelihood of their banks approving applications from individuals for mortgage loans to purchase homes for each of four categories of residential real estate loans. [includes one exclusive data chart] ...


August 15, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

Reverse Mortgages Reportable Under HMDA

Reverse mortgages would be included in Home Mortgage Disclosure Act reports under a proposed rule published recently by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The proposed rule would expand the definition of a “covered loan” under HMDA to include reverse mortgages and home-equity lines of credit (HELOCs), which include reverse mortgages structured as open-end HELOCs. Currently, HMDA regulations do not require reporting of HELOCs, although lenders may do so if they choose. Currently, financial institutions only have to report information on a closed-end reverse mortgage if the transaction involves a home purchase, home improvement or refinancing. Among other things, the CFPB has proposed to require that all reverse mortgages and HELOCs be identified by loan type to distinguish them from other categories of ...


August 15, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

Private MIs, VA Overtake Faltering FHA Program

Weighed down by high premium costs and lender overlays, FHA lost more primary market share to private mortgage insurers and the Department of Veterans Affairs during the second quarter of 2014. Although June’s FHA endorsement numbers have not yet been released, the trend seen in April through May, along with Ginnie Mae securitization data, suggest that FHA business was up a modest 11.5 percent from the first quarter. But that increase provides no comfort to FHA, which saw its market share go down to 33.7 percent, a six-year low. From April to May, FHA forward endorsements rose by 2.4 percent to $10.61 billion. On a year-over-year basis, however, endorsements were down from $21.9 billion in May 2013, according to an Inside FHA Lending analysis of agency data. On the other hand, private MI companies reported a total of $44.19 billion of new insurance written (NIW) during the ... [2 charts]


August 15, 2014 - Inside FHA Lending

More Indemnification Demands Anticipated

The False Claims Act (FCA) and the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery and Enforcement Act (FIRREA) not only have become strong enforcement tools in the fight against FHA mortgage fraud but also an efficient means of recovering taxpayer losses. Having used both federal statutes effectively to wrangle huge settlements from large banks, federal prosecutors now have their eyes set on mid-level banks, according to compliance experts during a recent webinar hosted by Inside Mortgage Finance Publications. “Because these FCA [and FIRREA] lawsuits have been a cash cow for the Department of Justice and the Inspector General of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, I think these agencies will target mid-level banks next,” said ...


August 14, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Wells Fargo Wins Latest Round in RESPA Class Action Involving Affiliated Business Arrangement

The U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals has ruled in favor of Wells Fargo and co-defendant Long & Foster in a class-action dispute involving an affiliated business arrangement. In Minter v. Wells Fargo Bank, NA et al, plaintiffs/appellants Denise Minter, Jason and Rachel Alborough, and Lizbeth Binks brought suit on behalf of a group of consumers alleging that Wells Fargo and Long & Foster Real Estate violated the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act. Specifically, the plaintiffs alleged that defendants created a joint venture, Prosperity Mortgage Co., to skirt RESPA’s prohibition on kickbacks in exchange for the referrals of settlement service business while failing to disclose this business arrangement to its customers. Here’s...


August 4, 2014 - Inside the CFPB

The Revolving Door/Legislative Update/Comments Due

Another CFPB Official Heads for the Private Sector. CFPB Enforcement Attorney Manuel Alvarez has been hired away by Affirm, a young financial services company based in San Francisco, to be its first chief compliance officer and general counsel. In his new role at Affirm, Alvarez will oversee and manage the company’s regulatory compliance program and related actives to prevent illegal, unfair or deceptive conduct. He will also take charge of the firm’s working relationships with regulators and Affirm’s service providers. “Consumers often don’t understand the fees or interest they pay on a revolving account. That has to change,” said Alvarez. “Affirm’s commitment to delivering honest and transparent financial products totally aligns with my long-standing commitment to consumer protection.” Alvarez was ...


August 4, 2014 - Inside the CFPB

MBA Wants to Extend SAFE Act Loan Officer Testing to Banks

The Mortgage Bankers Association, in a bit of a surprise move, is pressing the CFPB, the Conference of State Bank Supervisors and members of Congress for changes to the Secure and Fair Enforcement of Licensing Act and other regulations that would provide uniform testing standards for all mortgage loan officers. The development is somewhat unexpected in that the trade group is calling for regulators and lawmakers to increase the compliance load for its members. Under the SAFE Act, there are two regimes for loan officers. Loan officers who work for nonbank lenders have to be licensed. That includes testing, pre-licensing and continuing education requirements, as well as extensive criminal and financial background reviews by state regulators. Additionally, they also must ...


August 4, 2014 - Inside the CFPB

Bureau Weighs in on TILA Rescission Case Before SCOTUS

The CFPB and 25 states filed amicus briefs in a case pending before the Supreme Court of the United States, Jesinoski v. Countrywide Home Loans Inc., that could resolve a circuit split over the recession of a mortgage under the Truth in Lending Act. The Truth in Lending Act provides that a borrower “shall have the right to rescind the transaction until midnight of the third business day following ... the delivery of the information and rescission forms required under this section ... by notifying the creditor ... of his intention to do so.” TILA further creates a time limit for the exercise of this right, providing that the borrower’s “right of rescission shall expire three years after the date ...


August 4, 2014 - Inside the CFPB

Industry Cites Burden as CFPB Releases HMDA Proposed Rule

Mortgage lenders are getting weary of the seemingly never-ending supply of new regulations and proposals coming from the CFPB – with the latest being last month’s issuance of the bureau’s proposed rulemaking to ratchet up lender reporting requirements under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act. Lenders of all size are concerned that the proposal goes beyond what is mandated by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act and means increased compliance costs that will be passed onto consumers. And representatives of smaller institutions fear they will once again be set at a competitive disadvantage vis-à-vis larger lenders. Additionally, consumer data privacy considerations have emerged as another concern. The bureau, for its part, pitched the proposal as a way to improve ...


August 1, 2014 - Inside Nonconforming Markets

Frank: QRM Not Intended to Equal QM

The risk-retention standard federal regulators are leaning toward establishing isn’t what was intended under the Dodd-Frank Act, according to one of the main authors of the DFA. Barney Frank, a former Democrat congressman from Massachusetts, said aligning the definition for qualified mortgages with the definition for qualified residential mortgages would be a “grave error.” The DFA required federal regulators to establish standards for QRMs ...


August 1, 2014 - Inside Nonconforming Markets

CFPB Aims at ‘Risky’ Loan Features with HMDA

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau recently proposed a significant expansion of the loan features lenders would need to report under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act. The CFPB said the new data will help gauge whether regulations meant to limit originations of “risky mortgage products” have been effective. The federal regulator is seeking new disclosures regarding credit scores, debt-to-income ratios, qualified mortgage status and loan type, among many ...


July 31, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Finance

CFPB Aims to Up the Ante Substantially on HMDA Reporting, Proposed Rule Exceeds Dodd-Frank Act

Mortgage lenders face a heftier Home Mortgage Disclosure Act reporting load under a proposed rule issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau that would implement a number of changes mandated by the Dodd-Frank Act – and then some. The bureau views implementation of the Dodd-Frank changes as an opportunity to improve the data collected under HMDA, ease some reporting burden and modernize how the data are collected and reported, the agency said. The CFPB proposed...


July 25, 2014 - Inside Mortgage Trends

Black Knight Tech Adapts to the CFPB’s TRID

Black Knight Financial Services – with a little help from its friends at Wells Fargo Home Mortgage – has repurposed some of its existing technology and combined it with some fresh capabilities to help lenders cope with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s TILA/RESPA integrated disclosure rule. It also will enable mortgage lenders to automate the numerous multi-party processes required to close a loan these days, the company said. The new ...


July 21, 2014 - Inside the CFPB

Worth Noting/Looking Ahead/Vendor Update

Bureau Moves to Ensure Equal Treatment for Same-Sex Marrieds. The CFPB is synchronizing its internal policies with the U.S. Supreme Court decision in United States v. Windsor, striking down as unconstitutional Section 3 of the Defense of Marriage Act, which holds that the word ‘marriage’ means only a legal union between one man and one woman. According to a staff memorandum from CFPB Director Richard Cordray, the CFPB will regard a person who is married under the laws of any jurisdiction to be married nationwide for purposes of the federal statutes and regulations under the bureau’s jurisdiction regardless of the person’s place of residency. However, consistent with other federal regulatory agencies, the bureau will not regard persons who are joined ...


July 21, 2014 - Inside the CFPB

Dodd-Frank at Four: $21 Billion in Compliance Costs – and Counting

As of July 21, 2014, the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act is now four years old and the CFPB three, after imposing more than $21 billion in costs and 60.7 million paperwork burden hours, according to a new study by American Action Forum, which identifies itself as a center-right policy institute. “As time passes, the law becomes more expensive as regulatory agencies like the CFPB and the Federal Housing Finance Agency grow with the mission to implement burdensome rules,” the report said. “Meanwhile, small financial services firms continue to struggle as the law restricts the availability of financial products. With about one-quarter of the law still left to implement, one can only expect the costs to continue ...


July 21, 2014 - Inside the CFPB

Bureau Still Eyeballing Expansion Of Consumer Complaint Database

The CFPB is now collecting consumer complaints about seven different segments of the financial services sector, and its latest cumulative report on the subject indicates the Dodd-Frank Act’s cop on the beat is only going to continue to expand its dragnet. So far, the CFPB is accepting complaints about credit cards (as of July 21, 2011), mortgages (Dec. 1, 2011), bank accounts and services (March 1, 2012), credit reporting (Oct. 22, 2012), money transfers (April 4, 2013), debt collection (July 10, 2013), and payday loans (Nov. 6, 2013). “The CFPB continues to work toward expanding its complaint handling to include other products and services under its authority, such as prepaid cards. Consumers may also contact the CFPB about other products ...


Poll

Home-equity lending is beginning to show new life. My company (pick one):

Plans to enter this market over the next 12 months.

25%

Is already making home equity loans and hopes to increase the offerings.

45%

Is in the market but don’t expect much growth.

15%

Is not making second liens and has no plans to do so.

15%

Housing Pulse