Monthly Archives: July 2017

2018 HMDA Q&A – Get the Facts

“When the HMDA rule was originally enacted in 1975, it required depository and non-depository institutions to collect and report data about mortgage originations. On October 15, 2015, the scope of the rule changed—expanding reporting coverage for non-depository institutions, increasing transactions covered, and increasing data elements to report. The new HMDA rule now requires 48 data points be collected, recorded and reported: 25 are new data points (including total loan costs or total point and fees, automated underwriting system, and open-end line of credit) and 14 are modified from the previous rule.”[1]

Enough said. With this type of expansive change to the HMDA-reporting and -recordkeeping rules, there are bound to be questions. Here’s a sample.

Q: For HMDA recordkeeping and reporting, what’s the story on HELOCs?

A: Beginning January 1, 2018, covered loans under the HMDA rule will include not just closed-end mortgages, but also “open-end lines of credit secured by a dwelling” (i.e., HELOCs). Not every financial institution will be subject to the rule. Institutions that originated at least 25 closed-end mortgages or 100 HELOCs in each of the two preceding calendar years will be required to collect, record, and report HELOC data under HMDA.

Q: We have always relied on the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council’s software (reporting to the Federal Reserve Board) each year for HMDA reporting. We’ll be able to continue using it, right?

A: There are no changes to the submission process for HMDA data collected by financial institutions in 2016. Financial institutions will file HMDA data with the Federal Reserve Board (FRB) using the FRB’s instructions, file specifications, and edits familiar to HMDA users. Please visit the FFIEC website for resources to help you file.

There is a new data submission process beginning with HMDA data collected by financial institutions in or after 2017. Financial institutions will file HMDA data with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). The HMDA agencies have agreed that filing HMDA data collected in or after 2017 with the CFPB will be deemed submission to the appropriate Federal agency. You should refer to the FFIEC and the CFPBwebsites for resources to help you file.

Q: What if we need to resubmit HMDA data following the change to the reporting process?

A: There is a new data resubmission process beginning with HMDA data collected by financial institutions in or after 2017. Financial institutions will resubmit HMDA data collected in or after 2017 by filing with the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Refer to the FFIEC and the CFPB websites for resources to help you file.

Q: We keep the loan application register (LAR) to aggregate data for HMDA reporting? Is there anything we need to know about identifying our loan transactions on the LAR under the new HMDA rules?

A: If your organization originates loans that will be required to be reported on a HMDA Loan Application Register (LAR), you will need to obtain a Legal Entity Identifier, or LEI. This string of 20 characters is used in part to create the 45-character Unique Loan Identifier (ULI) that must be assigned to each loan reported on the LAR. You may obtain your LEI from the Global Market Entity Identifier Utility website at[2]

Have more HMDA recordkeeping and reporting questions? Ask the Compliance Experts, or, use these additional resources:


Around the Industry:

Effective Now:

The time to comply with new HMDA rules is now.

On the Horizon:

FDIC Summer 2017 Consumer News highlights 10 popular scams plaguing customers. How do they compare to your risk management?


How are you recapturing EPO or EPD fees? How might it affect your loan officer compensation practices? See this for more.

[1] Wu, B. (2017, June). Keep Calm and Compliance On. Mortgage Compliance Magazine, pp 40-43.

[2] Kilka, L. (2017, June). The Roadmap to HMDA Implementation. Mortgage Compliance Magazine, pp 36-39.


CFPB Issues Policy Guidance and Technical Corrections for Loan Servicing Rule Amendments

The CFPB recently issued two updates for its Mortgage Servicing Rule amendments to Regulations X and Z.  Issued on August 4, 2016, the Mortgage Servicing Final Rule amended various aspects of the existing Mortgage Servicing Rules.  These changes will become effective either on October 19, 2017 or April 19, 2018.

First, the CFPB issued non-substantive, technical corrections to the Mortgage Servicing Final Rule issued in 2016.  The corrections include several typographical errors, revisions to show the correct effective date for certain provisions, and a citation correction.

The CFPB also issued non-binding policy guidance for a three-day period of early compliance with the amended Mortgage Servicing Rules.  According to the Bureau, the policy guidance was issued in response to industry concerns over operational challenges presented by the mid-week effective date.  Industry participants sought the ability to implement and test these changes over the weekend prior to the effective date.

Accordingly, the non-binding policy guidance states that the CFPB does not intend to take supervisory or enforcement action for violations of existing Regulation X or Regulation Z provisions, resulting from a servicer’s compliance with the new requirements, up to three days before the applicable effective dates.  Therefore, for amendments that become effective on October 19, 2017, the three-day period will cover Monday, October 16 through Wednesday, October 18.  For amendments that will take effect on April 19, 2018, the three-day period will cover Monday, April 16 through Wednesday, April 18.



Potential HELOC Compliance Changes on the Horizon

Community banks and credit unions may soon be subject to new guidelines that will require them to report information on home equity lines of credit, due to Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) reporting requirements. Under rules scheduled to go into effect, credit unions and community banks are exempt from the requirement if they have originated fewer than 100 HELOCs during each of the previous two years.

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) is proposing a two-year test run of a higher threshold. The new proposal would increase the rule’s threshold to 500 loans in each of the previous two years. The change would be temporary, in use through calendar years 2018 and 2019, so that the Bureau can consider whether to make a permanent adjustment.

“Home-equity lines of credit worsened the foreclosure crisis that swept the country in 2008 and 2009,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “We need to keep track of the responsible use of these loans for consumers, but after hearing from community banks and credit unions we want to reconsider whether that goal can be achieved with a higher reporting threshold.”

HMDA, originally enacted in 1975, requires most lenders to report information on loan applications they receive and on loans they originate or purchase.  The data collected is made available so that banking regulators and the public can monitor whether financial institutions are serving the housing needs of their communities, identify possible discriminatory lending patterns and assist in distributing public-sector investment to attract private investment to needed areas.

The Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act transferred responsibility for HMDA reporting to CFPB, and the Bureau has updated the regulations to improve the quality and type of data collected.  The requirement to report data on HELOCs and other dwelling-secured open-end lines of credit is one of the more significant changes to the regulations.

CFPB said including these loans in the reporting requirements is important because, just like traditional mortgage, a customer can lose their home if they default.  Over leverage and defaults due to these products contributed to the foreclosure crises that many communities experienced in the late 2000s but this type of lending was not visible in the HMDA data or in any other publicly available data source collected at the time.

CFPB said that, while revamping HMDA it heard from community banks and credit unions that the new HELOC requirements represented a new, and in some cases, significant compliance burden for them. The original threshold of 100 dwelling-secured open-end lines in each of the previous two years was proposed for small-volume lenders where the benefits of the data do not justify the costs, Now CFPB is hearing that this threshold may still present challenges and costs greater than the Bureau had estimated.  Additionally, analysis of more recent data suggests changes in open-end origination trends that may result in more institutions reporting open-end lines of credit than was initially estimated. The Bureau estimates that the temporary 500-loan threshold would still capture about three-quarters of the home-equity lending market, down from about 88 percent at the 100-loan threshold.  


Why the Mortgage Market is Hard To Conquer with New Technologies

Mortgage lending has proven to be a tough industry for new companies to make waves in, and the sudden shutdown last week of San Francisco mortgage startup Sindeo helps show why.

Sindeo was one of more than two dozen startups seeking to streamline the cumbersome mortgage application, origination and closing process. Despite having what many described as top-flight technology and executives, it took down its website Tuesday night and replaced it with a brief note saying it had “made the difficult decision to wind down Sindeo.”

It didn’t say why, but a note from CEO Nick Stamos to investors obtained by Housing Wire said an investor who had committed to fund it tacked on a last-minute requirement to close the deal that it couldn’t meet. “My subsequent efforts to secure emergency bridge financing from this investor and others were also not successful,” he wrote.

Stamos said the company laid off 61 of its 70 employees Tuesday, keeping a small team to deal with loans already in process.

According to CB Insights, Sindeo had raised $25.5 million from investors including Renren, the Chinese social networking company.

Sindeo was a mortgage broker, which means it originated loans for others, but did not fund them itself. Its website formerly said it offered access to “40+ lenders & 1,000+ loan programs to best meet your specific needs and goals” and “closings in as few as 15 days.”

Borrowers, it said, could apply for a loan on a smartphone, tablet or desktop computer and get a preapproval letter in just five minutes. Unlike other companies offering only automated service, Sindeo also had human advisers whose pay was based not on commission but on “customer satisfaction.”

Eric Boyenga, whose South Bay real estate firm had a marketing partnership with Sindeo, had more than 20 clients who got mortgages through Sindeo. “The technology behind it was great. They had really top talent,” Boyenga said. But “the whole tech industry is tightening a bit. All you hear about is Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple. If you look at the startups, investors wanted to see a higher return, faster.” With Sindeo, “they weren’t seeing what they were looking for.”

Getting a mortgage is a time-consuming process that involves shopping for a loan; choosing from various rates and terms; filling out an application; submitting pay stubs, tax returns and financial statements; waiting for approval; and, finally, closing the loan.

It is highly regulated by federal and state governments and requires coordination with appraisers, title companies, county recorders’ offices and investors, who buy most loans.

Mortgage-tech companies are attempting to save people time and money by letting them shop and apply online and either upload their documentation or give the mortgage company permission to pull it directly from employers, financial institutions and the IRS. But it’s still a Herculean task.

A true digital mortgage “lets consumers run the loan from application to funding from any device, with the choice of working on their own or having a loan adviser jump in at any time — and enabling the lender to have a fully documented loan that passes all rules and regulations from both lawmakers and investors,” said Julian Hebron, an executive vice president with RPM Mortgage.

On top of hiring engineers and attorneys, “you need a huge investment in customer acquisition. In the end, it proved to be too much for Sindeo, and it will prove too much for the other mortgage disruptors.”

To compete, a company needs lending, technology, regulatory and marketing infrastructure, Hebron said.

The company that has all four is Quicken Loans, the nation’s largest nonbank mortgage lender and the third biggest overall after Wells Fargo and Chase, according to Inside Mortgage Finance.

Quicken makes loans directly to borrowers, traditionally over the phone. In early 2016, it launched Rocket Mortgage, an all-digital loan whose ads are hard to miss. In 2016, Rocket accounted for $7 billion of the company’s $96 billion in loans.

About two-thirds of those getting Rocket loans are buying rather than refinancing and about half are Millennials, said Regis Hadiaris, Rocket Mortgage product lead at Quicken.

He said Rocket customers are closing loans in as few as nine days for refis and 16 days for purchase mortgages. That compares with an industry average of 45 days.

“Because of the complicated nature of the industry, we took a very deliberate path to roll it out,” Hadiaris said. “We had a public (test) in 2013. We kept learning and adding to it.”

The question facing the industry, he said, is, “Will the large established companies with scale become innovative, or will the smaller, new entrants be able to scale?”

To succeed, “you need a lot more than a front-end user interface or mobile app. People’s financial lives are complicated. Mortgage underwriting is complicated. Building simple technology that lets people do this on their own is like putting someone who doesn’t know how to fly in the seat of a 747.”

That may be true, but it won’t stop companies from trying to break into the industry, which originated almost $2 trillion in mortgages last year.

CB Insights identified 25 “mortgage startups transforming the mortgage industry.”

Unlike Sindeo, which was purely a broker, some are mortgage banks that initially fund the loans they make, although they quickly sell most or all of them. They include Lenda and Clara Lending (both in San Francisco), and Better Mortgage (New York).

Lenda and Clara both distance themselves from Sindeo. “As a broker, you can’t control the price. You can’t control the speed” at which loans are closed, said Jason van den Brand, CEO of Lenda. “You can build something snazzy on the front end and give it to whoever you are brokering it to. But they could take two months to get it done. This is a business where time is money. We control the entire process.”

Others are business-to-business companies that provide software to mortgage originators who want to provide a digital experience. They include Blend (San Francisco), Roostify (Burlingame) and Cloudvirga (Irvine).

The industry is “so big and so complicated” that if you try to disrupt it all at once “you will probably die of indigestion,” said Blend CEO Nima Ghamsari. That’s why his company is focusing on one area. Sindeo, he said, “tried to disrupt it all at once.”


Source :

How Did YOUR Credit Union Perform in the Mortgage Market against California ?

California credit unions witnessed an uptick in mortgages over the past year, according to the latest snapshot report from the California Credit Union League that analyzed the year-over-year data trends for credit unions.

Credit unions in the state reported a 14% increase in first-mortgages year-over-year, which includes a mixture of fixed-rate, adjustable-rate, purchase, traditional refinance, and cash-out refinance.

Most notably, mortgages hit a record high outstanding dollar amount of $58 billion, rising 69% from the most recent low in 2011 of $34 billion. For added context, the last historical peak was $36 billion in 2009.

However, despite the record high in dollar amount, credit unions also posted an 8% year-over-year decrease in originations, falling to $2.82 billion.

This doesn’t come as too much of a surprise given the steady rise in home prices. According to S&P Dow Jones and CoreLogic’s latest report, home prices increased 5.5% in April.

Meanwhile, credit unions posted a 3% increase in the combined category of Home Equity Lines of Credit and home equity loans (second-mortgages). In total, the outstanding dollar amount hit $9.9 billion, rising 10% from the most recent low in 2014 of $9 billion. The record high was $14.2 billion in 2009.

As of late, regulatory pressure has hindered credit union growth. But, this doesn’t mean they aren’t doing well, as seen in the above numbers. Matt Kershaw, CEO of Clark County Credit Union, explained this in a recent interview with HousingWire.  Kershaw noted that while credit unions have grown since the crisis, it’s not proof that regulations are not damaging the industry.



Summary of Upcoming TRID Amendments for 2018

The CFPB finalized the long-awaited initial round of amendments to the TILA/RESPA Integrated Disclosure (TRID) rule, also known as the Know Before Your Owe rule.  However, instead of addressing the so-called “black hole” issue, which refers to situations in which a lender may not be able to use a Closing Disclosure to reset fee tolerances, the CFPB punted by releasing a proposed rule on the issue.

The proposed amendments were posted on the CFPB’s website at the end of July 2016.  Although the CFPB planned to finalize amendments in March, the final amendments, along with the related proposal, were not issued until the beginning of July.  While the amendments will become effective 60 days after publication in the Federal Register, mandatory compliance with the amendments will not be required until October 1, 2018.  The CFPB has been urged to take this approach to implementing regulations by industry members, as it allows for the testing of changes on a pilot basis before going live across a company’s entire platform.

In its press release announcing the amendments, the CFPB notes that it adopted (1) tolerances for the Total of Payments disclosure that are based on the existing finance charge tolerances, (2) a change to the partial exemption for certain down-payment and related assistance loans by excluding recording fees and transfer taxes from the fee limitation that applies to the exemption, (3) a change in the scope of the rule to cover loans on cooperative units, whether or not the cooperative is considered real property under applicable state law, and (4) clarifications on how to provide separate Closing Disclosures to the consumer and the seller.

The final rule is 560 pages in length and the proposal is 41 pages in length.  We will be analyzing the final rule and proposal and will provide a more detailed analysis in a future edition of our Mortgage Banking Update.


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