Legislative Issues

Browse articles from all of our Newsletters related to Legislative Issues.

August 26, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Groups Ask FHA, VA to Set Aside PACE Guide, Allow Comment Period

Major industry trade groups are asking FHA and VA to suspend proposed guidelines for energy-improvement loans and give stakeholders an opportunity to comment. In a joint letter, 11 trade groups warned that the proposed agency guidelines regarding Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) loans raises serious concerns that must be resolved before implementation of any PACE guidance. Prior to the issuance of the new guidelines, both FHA and VA prohibited the financing or refinancing if there was a lien other than the FHA-insured or VA-guaranteed mortgages. PACE programs are available in 19 states but most are in California. They provide financing for home improvements and clean-energy upgrades that would result in more efficient use of water and electricity, and ultimately savings for homeowners. The PACE obligation is repaid through a property-tax assessment, which takes a ...

August 25, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

FCC Declines to Exclude Servicer Calls to Delinquent Borrowers from TCPA’s ‘Prior Consent’ Requirement

The Federal Communications Commission has refused an industry request to exempt mortgage servicing calls from prohibitions against the use of “robocalls,” or automated dialing and calling systems, to contact delinquent borrowers on their cell phones. In a long-awaited final rule limiting the way servicers can collect on student loans, mortgages and other debts owed to the federal government, the FCC said it would not make a decision on whether the statutory exemption from the Telephone Consumer Protection Act’s “prior express consent” requirements applies to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loans or their servicers. The TCPA and FCC regulations require...

August 19, 2016 - Inside The GSEs

FHFA Extends Credit Risk Transfer Comment Period to October

The Federal Housing Finance Agency extended the response deadline on its “request for input” on the credit risk-transfer program. The response period will now close on Oct. 13, 2016, instead of Aug. 29. The FHFA extended it by 45 days because various industry stakeholders said they wanted more time to evaluate the information and questions raised in the RFI. Back in June, the FHFA asked for industry feedback on various aspects of its CRT program. Fannie Mae’s Connecticut Avenue Securities program and Freddie Mac’s Structured Agency Credit Risk program have accounted for the bulk of GSE risk-transfer activity since the program was launched three years ago.

August 5, 2016 - Inside The GSEs

Democrats Seek Housing Access, Foreclosure Prevention

The Democratic Party released its 2016 platform and its priorities range from expanding foreclosure prevention programs to increasing access to affordable housing and preserving the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage. Dave Stevens, president and CEO of the Mortgage Bankers Association, said that when it comes to housing, the Democratic and Republican platforms are starkly different. “The Republican platform is almost solely about removing burdens on financial institutions and others who build homes, and the Democratic platform deals with both the demand and supply side in their policies,” he said during one of several real estate panels held at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia Democrats specifically mentioned...

July 29, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Around the Industry

USMI Names MGIC Chief as Chairman. U.S. Mortgage Insurance has tapped Patrick Sinks, chief executive of MGIC Investment Corp., to be the trade group’s new chairman. Sinks succeeds USMI Chairman Rohit Gupta, president and CEO of Genworth Mortgage Insurance. Sinks served previously as USMI’s vice chairman. Bradley Shuster, chairman/chief executive for NMI Holdings, will take overNew Reverse-Mortgage Product. California Mortgage Advisors has expanded its reverse-mortgage menu, with the addition of a non-FHA reverse mortgage option of up to $6 million for select clients. With the new product, CMA joins a handful of private reverse-mortgage lenders that will consider properties valued up to $6 million. Last year, American Advisors Group, the largest Home Equity Conversion Mortgage lender, announced its AAG Advantage lending program, which features the ...

July 29, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

FHA Condo Bill Nears Enactment, Lenders More Eager for HUD Rule

Senate legislation that would make it easier to obtain FHA financing for condominium projects has been sent to the president for signature, though lenders seem to be more eager for long-anticipated condo reform guidelines from the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Senate lawmakers unanimously approved H.R. 3700, the “Housing Opportunity through Modernization Act,” before Congress retired for the August recess. The bill passed in the House of Representatives by a vote of 427-0 back in February. Industry observers said the bill would essentially codify FHA condo-financing guidelines, which HUD recently drafted and are currently undergoing clearance at the Office of Management and Budget. Under H.R. 3700, the FHA would be required to establish and implement a recertification process that is substantially less burdensome than the ...

July 25, 2016 - Inside the CFPB

Briefly Around Capitol Hill

GOP Legislation Would Exempt Small Nonbank Lenders from CFPB Examination, Enforcement. Rep. Roger Williams, R-TX, recently introduced H.R. 5907, the Community Mortgage Lenders Regulatory Act of 2016, which would exempt qualifying smaller, “responsible” nonbank lenders from CFPB examinations and primary enforcement authority. To qualify, a nonbank mortgage lender must have net worth of less than $50 million; have originated fewer than 25,000 loans or $5 billion in loans the preceding year; and have originated at least 95 percent of their mortgage loans as qualified mortgages the last three years. As currently applies to most banks, a qualifying “responsible community lender” would not be subject...

July 22, 2016 - Inside The GSEs

Community Banks Voice Reform Concerns at Senate Briefing

Community banks and affordable housing groups spoke at a Senate staff briefing this week to discuss GSE reform efforts and the impact on smaller lenders and affordable housing groups. The concerns ranged from the low capital at Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to recent up front risk-sharing efforts to the Common Securitization Platform currently in the works. …

July 21, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Senate Unanimously Approves FHA Condominium Bill, But Industry Interest is on HUD Condo Reform Guidelines

The U.S. Senate last week passed legislation easing FHA rules on condominium financing even as condo reform rules are undergoing clearance at the Office of Management and Budget. H.R. 3700, the Housing Opportunity Through Modernization Act of 2016, was approved by unanimous consent. The bill passed in the House of Representatives by a vote of 427-0 back in February. Industry observers say the bill would essentially codify long-anticipated guidelines the Department of Housing and Urban Development has drafted. Among other things, the bill requires...

July 21, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

GAO Lists Possible Barriers Preventing Wider Use of Private Flood Insurance, Regulatory and Competition Concerns

The Government Accountability Office said regulatory uncertainty and other barriers may inhibit the use of private flood insurance. The Flood Insurance Market Parity and Modernization Act, H.R. 2901, which passed the House unanimously in April, expands flood insurance options by including private flood insurance. The bill also lifts certain federal restrictions placed on insurance companies and gives states more flexibility to license and regulate private flood insurance. The GAO reported...

July 15, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Around the Industry

CA Legislature Poised to Pass Protections for Widowed Homeowners. The California legislature is a step away from enacting legislation that would extend existing foreclosure protections in the state Homeowners Bill of Rights (HBOR) to widows, widowers and other heirs of deceased homeowners. The legislature passed the HBOR in 2012 to provide due process protections to homeowners and establish rules and procedures for communication between servicers and borrowers regarding options to avoid foreclosure. However, the bill’s protections did not extend to surviving spouses and successors-in-interest who may wish to continue paying the mortgage loan but could not assume the loan or afford the payment with the loss of the deceased homeowner’s income. Surviving family members may then seek a loan assumption or modification, only to be refused by the servicer because their names are not on the ...

July 15, 2016 - Inside MBS & ABS

Mixed Jury Verdict in SEC Suit, Court Finds Repo Demand Analysis Unprotected, Morgan Stanley Loses

A New Mexico jury handed the Securities and Exchange Commission a split verdict in a 2008 financial crisis-related lawsuit against two senior executives of the now-defunct Thornburg Mortgage who were accused of fraud and misrepresenting the financial condition of the company. The jury found for defendants Larry Goldstone, former Thornburg CEO, and Clarence Simmons, former chief financial officer, on half of the counts but failed to reach a verdict on the most significant charges based on fraud and lying to the company’s outside auditors. In the lawsuit, the SEC alleged...


The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury fell to all-time low of 1.34% recently. How much better will originations be at your shop in the second half compared to 1H, if at all?

Better by 1% to 10%.


Better by 11% to 25%.


Off the charts better. Applications are great now.


Worse than 1H, but not by much.


A lot worse. But not sure on the damage.


Housing Pulse