FHFA Launches Title Acceptance Pilot Program to Reduce Closing Costs

On March 7, 2024 the Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced a pilot program for automated title acceptance. The limited duration program is eligible in certain geographies on refinance transactions with 80% or less LTV%.  The program enables borrowers to save anywhere from $300 to $1500 in closing costs. Lenders are required to warrant that…

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FFIEC Issues Statement on Valuation Discrimination

February 12, 2024, the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council (FFIEC) issued a Statement on Examination Principles Related to Valuation Discrimination and Bias in Residential Lending. The statement was issued to communicate principles for the examination of the appraisal and evaluation practices of supervised institutions. The Statement outlines risks from valuation discrimination and bias, which can…

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Freddie Mac Updates Unacceptable Appraisal Practices

Freddie Mac has updated its list of unacceptable appraisal practices to include the following: Provide “working class” and “inner city” as additional examples of terminology or veiled language that could indicate underlying bias; Identify that inclusion of references, statements or comparisons about crime rates or crime statistics, whether objective or subjective, in the appraisal analysis…

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CFPB and Justice Dept issue joint statement to protect access to fair credit by immigrants

The CFPB and the Department of Justice have issued a joint statement regarding fair credit opportunities for immigrant borrowers. The statement was issued to assist creditors and borrowers in understanding the potential civil rights implications when considering an individual’s immigration status under the Equal Credit Opportunity Act (ECOA). The statement was issued as a reminder…

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How does your institution measure up?

Order a peer analysis of lending activity in your marketplace. Every mortgage lender must have an action plan in place to monitor fair and inclusive lending. A peer analysis presents a clear picture of how your organization’s lending activity stacks up against similarly situated lenders who are actively lending in your area. Housing Research, LLC…

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Fannie Mae Updates Appraiser Independence Requirements

Fannie Mae released new requirements on September 19, 2023 that are considered important protections for mortgage investors, homebuyers, and the housing market. Appraiser Independence Requirements (AIR) set forth standards to safeguard the independence, objectivity, and impartiality of appraisers and other independent parties throughout the valuation process for 1-4 residential properties. Property Data Collector Independence Requirements…

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How does your institution measure up?

Peer Analyses Stay a step ahead of regulatory requirements by ordering a peer analysis of your lending marketplace. Enforcement agencies expect mortgage institutions to measure loan distribution in underserved areas, compared to lending activity by other lenders. In particular, a key imperative to a fair lending strategic plan is serving low-and moderate-income (LMI) and majority-minority…

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Customized Marketplace Assessments

The industry’s most in-depth credit needs assessment An indispensable tool for community lenders to meet the market with confidence Helps define measurable goals for fair lending outreach Available for any U.S. state, county, city, zip code, or minority community Choose any combination of geographic segments Demographic and statistical profile report for each selected area Estimates…

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Mortgage Lenders & Liability

Mortgage lenders can be held liable under federal law for relying upon discriminatory appraisals from third-party appraisers. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has stated that mortgage lenders can be held liable under federal law for relying upon discriminatory appraisals from third-party appraisers. Earlier this year, the DOJ filed a statement of interest to the…

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