Mortgage Insurance

Browse articles from all of our Newsletters related to Mortgage Insurance.

August 26, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Around the Industry

Mortgage Company President Charged with Defrauding Ginnie Mae. Robert Pena, president and founder of the now-defunct Mortgage Security Inc., was charged in federal district court in Boston for allegedly bilking Ginnie Mae out of nearly $3 million. MSI was an approved participant in the Ginnie Mae mortgage-backed securities program, pooling eligible single-family mortgages and selling the securitized products to investors. The firm also serviced the underlying loans. In 2011, Pena allegedly began diverting borrower payments and huge loan-payoff amounts into secret accounts, which he used to fund personal and business activities. Likewise, he is said to have funneled borrowers’ escrow funds and mortgage-insurance premiums into other personal accounts. In total, Pena pocketed $3 million due Ginnie Mae, which had to pay investors whose investments it had guaranteed, according to the ...

August 26, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Homeowners Allege Discrimination In Distressed-Loan Sales Program

African-American homeowners in New York City are seeking certification of a class action alleging that the government’s distressed-loan sale program discriminates against black homeowners. The suit alleges that black FHA homeowners in default are disproportionately affected by the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s note sale program and the subsequent “predatory” mortgage servicing. HUD Secretary Julian Castro, FHA Commissioner Ed Golding, Caliber Home Loans and U.S. Bank Trust were named defendants in the lawsuit filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York. The defendants’ business practices allegedly violated the plaintiffs’ due-process rights as well as the Fair Housing Act. Under the note sale program, delinquent FHA mortgages are pooled and auctioned off to the highest bidder. According to the plaintiffs, the bidders are usually private-equity firms or ...

August 26, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Wait Time for Evaluating, Deploying Home-Retention Options Reduced

The FHA has announced new streamlined procedures to help delinquent homeowners avoid foreclosure and stay in their homes. The agency is revising loss-mitigation procedures servicers use when evaluating and choosing the best home-retention options for delinquent borrowers by reducing waiting time for results. The new streamlined procedures are designed to enhance servicers’ ability to evaluate foreclosure-avoidance alternatives, especially for the FHA-Home Affordable Modification Program (FHA-HAMP). Specifically, FHA will require servicers to convert successful three-month trial modifications into permanent modifications within 60 days instead of the average four to six months. Borrowers who have three missed mortgage payments would be able to opt for a partial claim to bring their arrearages current versus the previous four-month minimum. In addition, the FHA will eliminate the ...

August 26, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

HUD-IG Hammers Title II Lender for Poor Implementation of FHA HAMP

An FHA Title II lender in Atlanta is in trouble with the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s inspector general for not implementing FHA’s Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) in accordance with HUD’s requirements. As a result, HUD paid more than $1.1 million for 138 loans that were not eligible for modification under the FHA-HAMP. The lender, Georgia Housing and Finance Authority, could be facing $1.42 million in indemnifications and reimbursements because of its actions. The state housing finance agency provides low- and moderate-income people safe and affordable rental housing, and acquires and maintains housing for homeownership. Proceeds from the sale of mortgage revenue bonds, as well as federal and state allocations, fund its housing programs. GHFA also uses bond proceeds to purchase mortgages, which are serviced by mortgage affiliate. The cash flow from the ..

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 26, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

FCC Issues TCPA ‘Exemption’ Rule, Lawyers Baffled by Rule’s Language

The Federal Communications Commission has issued a baffling final rule restricting the way servicers can collect on or service student loans, mortgages and other debts owed to the federal government. Specifically, the rule implements a key provision in the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015 amending the Telephone Consumer Protection Act to exclude robocalls from the TCPA consent requirement if they are made solely to collect a debt owed to or guaranteed by the federal government. The TCPA generally requires a caller to obtain “prior express consent” from the call recipient before making a telemarketing call or an auto-dial call to the recipient’s landline or cell phone. However, the mortgage industry raised concerns that TCPA’s consent requirement could create potential liability for important servicing calls that could help homeowners save their homes, which prompted Congress to pass the Budget Act amendment. Last month, the FCC specifically excluded the federal government from the TCPA’s consumer protections by ruling that the government is not a “person” subject to the TCPA. Here is where the FCC rule gets confusing. commission is authorized to adopt rules to “restrict or limit the number and duration” of any wireless calls to collect debt owed to the federal government.”

August 26, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

HUD Urged to Pursue $21.5 Million In Uncollected Partial Claims

A new audit report from the Department of Housing and Urban Development’s inspector general recommended that the agency continue its efforts to collect millions of dollars in partial claims that came due during fiscal year 2015. According to a HUD IG report, the department left uncollected approximately 1,361 partial claims, worth about $21.5 million. The IG discovered the oversight during an audit of HUD’s partial claim collections. The IG reviewed a statistical sample of 135 of 10,561 partial claims associated with FHA loans that terminated in FY 2015. “HUD had not collected 36 of the claims that should have been collected,” the report stated. “We used this result to project that a total of 1,361 partial claims were not collected.” The claims were never returned to the FHA mortgage insurance fund, as required by agency rules, to strengthen FHA solvency, the report said. A partial claim is a loss ...

August 26, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Lenders Need to Seek Legal Advice Before Using FHA’s DPA Programs

The Mortgage Bankers Association strongly urged the Department of Housing and Urban Development and the FHA to issue authoritative guidelines for lenders participating in state and local housing finance programs that rely on premium pricing to fund downpayment assistance. In a recent letter to members, the MBA recommended that FHA lenders “tread carefully” and seek legal advice until HUD provides more definitive guidance on downpayment assistance and premium pricing. Lenders should consider carefully whether and when to participate in DPA programs from housing finance agencies that rely on premium-pricing mechanisms, the letter said. The MBA said it would continue to press HUD for clarification on this contentious issue. The FHA and HUD’s inspector general are currently at odds over permissible sources of single-family downpayment assistance offered through housing finance agencies. Although the ...

August 25, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Appraisal Issues Increasingly Causing Delays of Purchase Mortgages in Busy Home-Buying Season

A shortage of appraisers and rising mortgage activity has prompted appraisal issues to account for more delayed closings, according to the latest Campbell/Inside Mortgage Finance HousingPulse Tracking Survey. For home sales closed in July after experiencing a delay, appraisal-related issues accounted for the delay 14.1 percent of the time, based on a three-month moving average. That was up from a 12.4 percent share the previous month and nearly double the 7.2 percent share in January. “Closing times are...

August 19, 2016 - Inside The GSEs

GSE Roundup

GSEs Offer Forbearance for Flood-Damaged Homes. With more than 40,000 homes hit by deadly flooding in Louisiana this week, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are offering temporary mortgage suspensions. Fannie Mae said servicers can grant forbearance of up to 90 days to borrowers they believe were impacted by the flood, whether they make contact with them or not. When they make contact, the servicer can offer up to six months of forbearance, which can then be extended with approval. Also, lenders must verify the condition of the property of loans originated and sold to the GSE. Freddie’s policy allows for forbearance and foreclosure suspension up to 12 months. Penalties and late fees against disaster-damaged homes are also waived.

August 18, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Arch Capital to Acquire AIG’s United Guaranty Corp., Merger Would Create Largest Private MI in the World

American International Group early this week announced an agreement to sell its mortgage insurance subsidiary, United Guaranty Corp., to Arch Capital Group for $3.4 billion in cash and securities as part of AIG’s plan to become a leaner, more profitable insurer. As of the midway point in 2016, UG was the top private MI in traditional new insurance written, with an 18.8 percent share of the market. Arch MI ranked as the smallest of the seven active firms, with an ...

August 12, 2016 - Inside Nonconforming Markets

Role for Private MI Seen in Non-Agency MBS

While private mortgage insurance on new non-agency mortgage originations has been minimal since 2008, some industry participants project that private MI will play a role in the non-agency mortgage-backed security market going forward. “Mortgage insurers may get more involved with the private-label market, and this may be another source of third-party oversight,” Morningstar Credit Ratings said in a recent report. “While it is too early to predict the investors’ response to ...

August 11, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Mortgage Insurance Came Roaring Into Spring, Setting New Business Record in Booming Market

Lenders originated home loans that included primary mortgage insurance at a hectic pace during the second quarter of 2016, according to a new Inside Mortgage Finance ranking and analysis. A whopping $196.23 billion of new mortgage originations carried private MI during the second quarter, including significant increases in both private MI and government-insured mortgage insurance. That was up 34.1 percent from the first three months of 2016, and represented the biggest quarterly total on record. Private MI posted...[Includes three data tables]

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

VA Further Clarifies Guidance on TRID, Other Policy Handbook Items

We pick up where we left off last issue with the Department of Veterans Affairs attempting to clarify certain guidance in the VA Lender Handbook. ? If the TRID (Truth in Lending/Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act Integrated Disclosures) closing disclosures change after the veteran signs [the form], should the lender require the veteran to sign it again? VA: The short answer is yes. The lender is required to provide the TRID closing disclosure no later than three business days before consummation. The lender is required to provide a corrected closing disclosure to the borrower three days before consummation or closing in certain instances, and at or before consummation if other types of changes occur, such as adjustment of costs or credits. Therefore, any changes made that require an amended disclosure must have the borrower’s signature. ? Is the Amendatory Clause mandatory for all ...

July 29, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

Source of Funds: Top Reason for High Unacceptable Findings in 1Q

Unverified funds and undocumented deposits are the leading causes of high initial unacceptable findings in a post-endorsement review of a sampling of FHA-insured loans, according to the Department of Housing and Urban Development. Source-of-fund issues were found in 9.8 percent of FHA loans in the first quarter of 2016, up from 9.0 percent in the fourth quarter of 2015. The percentage of loans with such problems fell to 2.0 percent after going through loss mitigation. Specifically, auditors either found undocumented large deposits or deposits that are from unacceptable sources. In addition, auditors found loans in which borrower funds fell short of the minimum investment requirement or actual funds to close an FHA loan. Inadequate borrower funds or reserves were also found in certain loans that were run through the TOTAL Scorecard, invalidating them for FHA approval. The ...

July 29, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

HUD to Look into IG Allegations of Illegal Practices in DPA Programs

The Department of Housing and Urban Development will look into certain downpayment-assistance practices that the department’s inspector general alleged are improper or unlawful. In a recent note to FHA lenders, FHA Commissioner Ed Golding said HUD would look into any inappropriate practices, including the extent to which government-sponsored downpayment-assistance programs disclose loan terms to borrowers. In addition, HUD will investigate IG allegations of inappropriate fees or costs being charged to borrowers, as well as reports of steering and coercion of borrowers, said Golding. In the note, Golding reiterated HUD’s support for government-backed DPA programs that enable families to access credit for purchasing homes. The note also carried a statement from HUD Deputy Secretary Nina Coloretti, which reiterated the department’s support for government-backed DPA programs. Coloretti also clarified a memorandum on DPA issued by Golding back in May, which, she said, “may have been misinterpreted by some to endorse otherwise unlawful practices.” She said HUD does not endorse such practices.

July 29, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

CIT Group Adds $230 Million to Loss Reserves Due to HECM Losses

CIT Group this week revealed that it was shoring up loss reserves tied to a reverse mortgage servicing operation it absorbed as part of its acquisition of OneWest Bank and its parent holding company, IMB HoldCo., last August. The loss of $167 million in discontinued operations relates to Financial Freedom, a reverse mortgage servicing subsidiary of OneWest Bank, which CIT shut down in December last year. In an earlier filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, CIT management identified a material weakness in Financial Freedom related to estimates of the interest-curtailment reserve in its Home Equity Conversion Mortgage portfolio. The flawed estimates apparently have resulted in a material misstatement of CIT’s consolidated financial statements. Due to a change in estimates, and taking into consideration an investigation being conducted by the ...

July 29, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

FHA, VA Begin Insuring Mortgages On Properties with PACE Liens

The FHA and VA are expanding their guarantees to residential properties with superior PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) liens, but certain clarifications must be made before the market will really open up, according to legal experts. Under newly issued guidance, the FHA and the VA will begin insuring mortgages on qualified residential properties encumbered by PACE liens in support of a White House initiative to make clean energy and energy upgrades available to low- and moderate-income homeowners. PACE programs are available in 19 states and in the District of Columbia and have enabling legislation in 32 states, plus Washington, DC. Such programs provide financing for home improvements that enable homeowners to make energy and water use more efficient and less costly. The financing, however, is not like a traditional loan product. Homeowners repay the PACE financing through a ...

July 29, 2016 - Inside FHA/VA Lending

FHA Bursts over $1 Trillion in June As New Issuance Exceeds Runoff

Despite quickening refinance activity, the FHA single-family market soared over the $1 trillion mark in loans pooled in Ginnie Mae mortgage-backed securities during the second quarter of 2016, according to a new Inside FHA/VA Lending analysis. A record $1.001 trillion of FHA single-family loans made up the lion’s share of collateral backing Ginnie MBS as of the end of June. That was a 1.3 percent increase from the previous quarter and a 5.5 percent gain from the midway point in 2015. Steady growth in FHA loans helped push Ginnie single-family MBS to $1.576 trillion outstanding, topping Freddie Mac for second place in the agency market. The VA loan guaranty program was still the fastest-growing corner of the government-insured market, with total VA loans in Ginnie pools up 3.8 percent from March and 16.7 percent higher than a year ago. The actual amount of FHA and VA loans outstanding is somewhat ... [ 4 charts ]

July 28, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Is Fear of a Cut in FHA Premiums Holding Up AIG’s Plan to Spin Off United Guaranty?

In late January of this year, American International Group announced its intention to spin off 10 percent of its top-ranked mortgage insurance affiliate, United Guaranty Corp., but almost seven months later no deal has materialized. According to interviews conducted by Inside Mortgage Finance this week, it’s been “radio silent” regarding the initial public offering, but all that could change next week when AIG releases its second quarter results. A spokesman for UGC declined to comment on the matter. Most of the observers believe...

July 21, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

FHA to Insure Certain Mortgages with PACE Liens; MBA, California Realtors Dissatisfied with Guidelines

The FHA this week clarified its policy on insuring mortgages with PACE (Property Assessed Clean Energy) senior tax liens to make it easier for borrowers to obtain FHA financing for such mortgages, but the mortgage and real estate industries continue to have concerns. The new guidelines address state programs where the PACE obligation is treated like a property tax with priority over an FHA lien. The program provides financing for home-energy improvements and water conservation, and is repaid through an assessment added to the property’s tax bill. The guidelines are designed...

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 21, 2016 - Inside Mortgage Finance

Realtors Say FHA Loans and GSE Low-Downpayment Programs Seen as Readily Available for Homebuyers

While some banks have reduced their FHA lending in recent years and alternatives from the government-sponsored enterprises are still gaining traction, homebuyers still have access to low-downpayment mortgage programs, according to the latest Campbell/Inside Mortgage Finance HousingPulse Tracking Survey. “Most real estate agents say high loan-to-value ratio mortgages are readily available, especially for homebuyers with good credit,” said Tom Popik, research director for Campbell Surveys. The HousingPulse survey covering activity in June included...


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