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Volume 11 - Number 12

June 15, 2018

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Ginnie Announces New Metric for Monitoring Issuer Performance

Ginnie Mae has added a new metric to make it easier for approved issuers to track the prepayment rates of single-family loans underlying they have delivered into mortgage-backed securities. The new prepayment metric would enhance Ginnie’s Issuer Operational Performance Profile (IOPP) tool, which was launched in 2015 to help issuers measure their performance against the agency’s standards. The new tool is the latest move by Ginnie to ensure the integrity and market predictability of Ginnie MBS. The prepayment tool will be available to lenders beginning June 25. The announcement follows an agency administrative action last week against three VA lenders that were penalized for cherry picking and refinancing unseasoned VA loans not to benefit borrowers but to charge them higher fees. The lenders – Freedom Mortgage, SunWest Mortgage Co. and NewDay USA – were among nine issuers that ...

HECM Originations Rise in 1Q18, Draw Cut Slows HMBS Issuance

Reverse mortgage lenders started out strong in the first three month of 2018 with a 19.2 percent increase in Home Equity Conversion Mortgage production from the previous period. HECM endorsements totaled $5.4 billion in the first quarter, with purchase reverse loans accounting for the bulk of originations, 81.9 percent. First quarter production was up 18.5 percent from the same period last year. Meanwhile, HECM mortgage-backed securities issuance totaled $2.97 billion for the quarter, down from $3.25 billion in the prior quarter, Ginnie Mae data showed. The top five HECM originators in sequential order – American Advisors Group, Reverse Mortgage Funding, One Reverse Mortgage, Liberty Home Equity Solutions, and Synergy One Lending – accounted for $1.66 billion, or 30.8 percent, of total production during the first quarter. American Advisors maintained its top ranking with $841.4 million of HECM loans, which ... [Charts]

Reverse-Mortgage Lenders Seek Backend Changes in HECM Rules

Now that Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson has sworn in a new FHA commissioner, reverse mortgage lenders are hoping to see some changes in the Home Equity Conversion Mortgage program. The National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association is planning to ask FHA Commissioner Brian Montgomery for changes in the HECM program, particularly at the back end, to make it more profitable for lenders. Peter Bell, the group’s chief executive officer, believes there are opportunities to reduce the cost of the HECM program to the FHA fund by having better servicing procedures. “We would like to see certain loss mitigation procedures in the new HECM rules to be made available to all reverse-mortgage loans,” he said. Some of those procedures apply only to loans originated on or after the new rules became effective, such as “cash for keys.” Cash for keys is a cash offer by a lender to a ...

VA Clarifies Lender Certification Required on All VA-Backed Loans

All home loans with a VA guarantee, including Interest Rate Reduction Refinance Loans, require a lender’s certification, according to the Department of Veterans Affairs. In recent guidance, the agency clarified that the lender certification requirement applies to all VA-backed loans, and is not contingent upon the type of VA loan. Jeff London, director of the VA Loan Guaranty Service, said there have been inquiries from lenders and the VA regional loan centers regarding the validity of the lender certification on an IRRRL. The lender certification is required on IRRRLs, whether or not underwriting is required, London clarified. Under VA rules, lenders must certify that the VA loans they originate comply fully with the law and meet VA’s underwriting standards. The IRRRL is a streamlined program that requires very little verification yet allows veterans to refinance at a lower rate based on their ...

Bill Introduced to Address Issues Raised by DOJ Use of FCA, FIRREA

Bipartisan legislation was introduced recently in the House to addresse problems arising from the use of the False Claims Act and the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act in the context of mortgage insurance claims. Co-sponsored by Reps. Josh Gottheimer, D-NJ, and Lee Zeldin, R-NY, the bill would provide certain restrictions and clarifications on false claims and civil actions related to loans with FHA, VA or U.S. Department of Agriculture guarantee. H.R. 5993, the Fixing Access to Credit Act of 2018, has been sent to the House Financial Services Committee and to the House Committee on the Judiciary. A Civil War statute, FCA seeks to deter fraud against the government by providing hefty penalties for violations and establishing a 10-year statute of limitations to file civil claims. Enacted in the wake of the savings and loan debacle in the 1980s, FIRREA outlawed abusive lending and ...

VA Introduces New Renovation Loan, Great for Fixer-Uppers

VA lenders are offering a new mortgage product to help veterans purchase and renovate their homes or make necessary repairs through the refinance of an existing home. The VA renovation or rehabilitation loan program allows borrowers to purchase a home with a traditional VA loan and fund up to $35,000 in repairs and improvements. “This product is great for homebuyers looking for fixer-uppers,” said Patti White, president of Military Mortgage in Avon, CT. VA officials announced the new product during a lender conference in Miami last April and it was on lenders’ menu two weeks later. The VA renovation loan is a second loan much like the FHA 203(k) property repair and rehabilitation loan, according to White. Borrowers may finance up to 100 percent of the as-completed value of the home. Borrowers need a 620 minimum credit score to qualify. The 100 percent financing features reduced ...

Guidance Sought on Whether ‘Dreamers’ Qualify for FHA Loan

One policy issue that could land on FHA Commissioner Brian Montgomery’s desk soon is whether potential borrowers who were granted temporary status under the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals are eligible for FHA-insured loans. Mortgage lenders are divided on the issue and may soon ask the newly installed head of the FHA for guidance, said Brian Chappelle, a mortgage industry consultant. President Obama created the DACA program in 2012 to allow undocumented immigrant children to stay temporarily in the U.S. for two years without fear of deportation. They have an opportunity to renew their DACA status towards the end of their second year. To qualify for DACA, the undocumented child must have arrived in the country before they were 16 years old or be younger than 31 on June 15, 2012. They must have lived continuously in the country since June 2007. A person protected under DACA is ...

USDA Securitization Fell in 1Q18, PennyMac Grabs Market Lead

Issuance of mortgage securities backed by USDA loans dropped during the first three months of 2018. Approximately $4.03 billion of rural housing loans with a USDA guarantee were delivered in Ginnie Mae MBS during the first quarter, down 18.3 percent from the previous quarter. Agency data also showed an 11.7 percent decline in USDA securitization volume from the same period a year ago. Rural housing loans accounted for 1.5 percent of all loans securitized in Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac and Ginnie Mae pools and 2.8 percent of loans with private or government-backed mortgage insurance. Purchase loans comprised the bulk of USDA loans that were delivered into Ginnie MBS pools. PennyMac knocked Freedom Mortgage out of first place with a total of $753.3 million in securitized USDA loans despite a 10.4 percent decline in production. Freedom Mortgage accounted for $523.3 million of USDA loans pooled in ... [Charts]

USDA Spells Out Rules for Direct, Guaranteed Mortgage Refinancing

The U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Housing Service has issued guidance detailing requirements for refinancing its direct and guaranteed rural-housing loans. Direct and guaranteed are both Section 502 loan programs but are different from each other. The lender for guaranteed home loans is a privately owned thrift, bank or mortgage company, which is also the servicer of the loan. The lender for the direct program is the RHS, while USDA Rural Development, which includes RH, is the servicer. Guaranteed borrowers are capped at 115 percent of the area median income while income levels for direct borrowers must not exceed 80 percent of AMI. Guaranteed borrowers are not eligible for payment assistance, which can lower the interest rate on the mortgage to as low as 1 percent. The assistance is for direct borrowers and is based on borrower income as a percentage of AMI. Finally, borrower protections differ ...

Around the Industry

FHA FAQ Website Moves to New Platform. The FHA will be shifting its Frequently Asked Questions website to a new platform. Users may experience some changes in functionality, the agency warned. The FHA Resource Center has posted new advanced search tips to help users better navigate the new platform. VA Title Requirements for Conveyance of Real Property. The Department of Veterans Affairs has extended guidance for title requirements for conveying real property to July 1, 2020. The rescission date of the original guidance is July 1, 2018. Reverse Mortgage Lenders Comment on CFPB Consumer Complaint Reporting. The National Reverse Mortgage Lenders Association questioned the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s legal authority to publish unredacted consumer complaints. In a comment letter, the industry group said that while complaint data in some format may be ...


With mortgage production down noticeably this year from 2017, how many lenders might disappear via M&A or failure during the next 12 months?

10% or less. It’s not that bad out there.
11% to 25%. It’s a challenging market.
25% to 40%. It’s going to be very ugly.
No opinion.

vote to see results