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Volume 9 | Issue 5 | Tuesday, February 05, 2019

The Lede


Senate Banking Committee Chair Crapo Outlines Housing Finance Reform Plan

Senate Banking Committee Chairman Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, on Friday released a much-anticipated framework for housing finance reform legislation, pushing the issue into the mix for the 116th Congress.


News & Trends

IMBs: The Very Definition of 'Skin in the Game'

SAN FRANCISCO--Independent mortgage banks represent more than three-fourths of Mortgage Bankers Association membership, a fact that MBA 2015 Chairman Bill Cosgrove, CMB, CEO of Union Home Mortgage Corp., Strongsville, Ohio, said is not lost on the association.

MBA Offers Recommendation to FHFA on Federal Home Loan Banks Proposed Rule

The Mortgage Bankers Association, in a letter to the Federal Housing Finance Agency, said it supported the agency's proposed rule to amend existing Federal Home Loan Bank housing goals but urged agency to monitor the rule's impact on the FHLB Acquired Member Assets programs.

GSEs Push for Greater Efficiencies in Mortgage Process

SAN FRANCISCO--These are not quiet times for Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

ATTOM: Average U.S. Home Seller Profits Hit 12-Year High

ATTOM Data Solutions, Irvine, Calif., said home sellers in 2018 realized an average home price gain since purchase of $61,000, up from $50,000 last year and up from $39,500 two years ago in 2016 to the highest level since 2006.

Loan Defects Rise for 4th Straight Month

First American Financial Corp., Santa Ana, Calif., said its Loan Application Defect Index rose in December, the fourth consecutive monthly increase, but remains below historical levels.

Black Knight: Foreclosure Rate, Inventory End 2018 Below Pre-Recession Averages

Black Knight, Jacksonville, Fla., said all four major performance metrics in its Mortgage Monitor Report--delinquencies, serious delinquencies, active foreclosures and total non-current inventory--ended the year below 2000-2005 pre-recession averages for the first time since the financial crisis.

MBA News

MBA National Mortgage Servicing Conference & Expo in Orlando Feb. 25-28

The Mortgage Bankers Association's National Mortgage Servicing Conference & Expo 2019 (Servicing19) returns to Orlando Feb. 25-28.

MBA Education School of Mortgage Servicing Mar. 4-14

MBA Education presents its School of Mortgage Servicing instructor-guided online course Mar. 4-14.

MBA Education Compliance Essentials State Mortgage Servicing Rules Deep Dive Workshop Feb. 25

MBA Education and the Compliance Essentials program present State Mortgage Servicing Rules Deep Dive Workshop on Feb 25 at the Hyatt Regency Orlando in conjunction with the MBA National Mortgage Servicing Conference & Expo.

MBA Education Foundational Concepts in Residential Mortgage Servicing in Orlando Feb. 25

MBA Education presents a workshop, MBA Education Foundational Concepts in Residential Mortgage Servicing, in Orlando, Fla., on Feb. 25 in conjunction with the MBA National Mortgage Servicing Conference & Expo.

MBA Education Advanced Servicing Workshop in Orlando Feb. 25

MBA Education presents its Advanced Servicing One-Day Workshop on Monday, Feb. 25 at the MBA National Mortgage Servicing Conference & Expo in Orlando, Fla.

Top National News

Republicans Want Mortgage Giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac to be Private Companies Again

Washington Post, Feb. 1, 2019--Renae Merle
A decade after Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were placed under government control, a key Senate Republican on Friday proposed allowing them to return to being private companies.

Housing Finance Reforms Welcomed by Real Estate Industry

Mortgage Professional America, Feb. 4, 2019--Steve Randall
Proposals to overhaul the US housing finance system set out by Senator Mike Crapo Friday have been welcomed by several industry stakeholders.Among those who have welcomed the proposals is the Mortgage Bankers Association's Robert D. Broeksmit, CMB, President and CEO.

GSE Reform, CFPB Underwriting Rule are on Collision Course

American Banker, Feb. 4, 2019--Kate Berry (subscription)
The White House and Senate Banking Committee are pursuing parallel tracks to end the GSEs' federal conservatorships. Any resulting plan must deal with whether GSE-backed mortgages are still exempt from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau's Qualified Mortgage rule. "Not doing something to extend the patch would be highly disruptive," said Bob Broeksmit, the president and CEO of the Mortgage Bankers Association.

Mortgage Market Dynamics: Competition and Evolution

Journal for Structured Finance, Feb. 2019--Michael Fratantoni
MBA Chief Economist says lenders that can manage through today's challenges while continuing to attract customers will be best-position to compete in the years ahead.

White House Walks Back Otting Comment on Imminent GSE Reform

HousingWire, Jan. 30, 2019--Jessica Guerin
On Tuesday the White House issued a statement that appeared to walk back Federal Housing Finance Agency Acting Director Joseph Otting's comments about taking the GSEs out of conservatorship, dampening hopes for immediate action and causing shares of both GSEs to slip 12 percent.

The Average Adjustable-Rate Mortgage is Nearly $700,000. Here's What that Tells Us

MarketWatch, Feb. 4, 2019--Andrea Riquier
That data point, courtesy of the Mortgage Bankers Association, is a reminder--perhaps an uncomfortable one--that the mortgage industry must still offer products that make it artificially affordable to get people in the door, with the intention of refinancing later.

FHFA Names New Chief of Staff

HousingWire, Jan. 31, 2019--Jessica Guerin
The Federal Housing Finance Agency has named John Roscoe its new chief of staff. Roscoe currently serves as special assistant to the president in the White House Office of Presidential Personnel.

CFPB Offers New FAQ for TRID Compliance

Naional Mortgage News, Feb. 1, 2019--Brad Finkelstein (subscription)
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has published a new "frequently asked questions" tool to help mortgage lenders with TILA-RESPA integrated disclosures compliance.

IRS Offers New Rules and 'Safe Harbors' for Pass-Through Deductions

National Real Estate Investor, Feb. 04, 2019--Beth Mattson-Teig
One of the big windfalls for real estate professionals in the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is the opportunity to take up to a 20 percent deduction of income from pass-through entities. But some uncertainty clouding the picture may be taking some of the wind out of the sales of that enthusiasm.

Mortgage Lenders Still Making the Same TRID Errors: MetaSource

National Mortgage News, Jan. 29 2019--Brad Finkelstein (subscription)
The same TILA-RESPA integrated disclosure errors were made by mortgage lenders, though those documents have been required for over three years, a report from MetaSource said.

GSEs Data Security Top Senate Banking's Agenda

National Mortgage News, Jan. 29, 2019--Neil Haggerty (subscription)
The Senate Banking Committee will examine proposals to "fix the flawed" housing finance system in the new Congress, according to a summary of Chairman Mike Crapo's legislative priorities unveiled Tuesday.

Ginnie Mae Ramps Up Scrutiny of Nonbank Mortgage Lenders

The Real Deal (New York), Jan. 29, 2019--Kevin Sun
For the first time in years, the agency has asked a number of these lenders to improve financial metrics before receiving full approval to continue issuing Ginnie Mae-backed mortgage bonds.

Is China's Debt Crackdown Hitting California's Commercial Real Estate Bubble?

Market Express, Jan. 30, 2019--Wolf Richter
The Chinese government is cracking down on capital flows from China to other countries, particularly to fund real estate projects. It is also cracking down on the "ballooning" debt of Chinese conglomerates, after their real estate buying spree.

Homeowners in Government Mortgage Programs Remain at Risk of Unnecessary Foreclosures

The Hill, Jan. 31, 2019--Lisa Sitkin, Odette Williamson
The authors say one aspect of the recent government shutdown that has received too little attention is that it significantly increased the risk that thousands of struggling homeowners across the nation would lose their homes.

GE Agrees to Settle DoJ Subprime Mortgage Case for $1.5bn

Financial Times, Jan. 31, 2019--Ed Crooks (subscription)
General Electric‘s new boss took a first step towards ending years of upheaval that has drove the conglomerate from the top tier of American companies, announcing strong revenue growth and a $1.5 billion settlement in a longstanding probe into its role in the 2008 financial crisis.

HGTV Shows Like 'Fixer Upper' Spur Demand for Home Renovation Loans

National Mortgage News, Feb. 4, 2019--Paul Centopani (free article)
Popular TV shows about house fixers and flippers have sparked consumer interest in remodeling, creating an opportunity for lenders to build a specialty in renovation loans while traditional mortgage lending is weak.

About Servicing NewsLink

President and CEO: Robert Broeksmit, CMB

Publisher: Marcia Davies, Chief Operating Officer

Vice President of Public Affairs: John Mechem

Editor: Mike Sorohan 202/557-2855 

Editorial Director: Michael Tucker 202/557-2851 

Senior Editorial/Advertising Specialist: Lesley Hall 202/557-2856

Advertising Opportunities: Bill Farmakis 203/834-8832

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