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With the new TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure rule going into effect on October 3, Fidelity National Title senior sales executive Connie Montalbano-Hill and senior account executive Desiree Baker want to make sure REALTORS® are prepared, so no delays will occur with their transactions. At Thursday’s Silicon Valley Association of REALTORS® Cupertino/Sunnyvale District tour meeting, they explained the fine points of the new law, what’s different, and what REALTORS® can do to make sure a transaction won’t fall through.

The new forms are a consolidation of several forms. The Good Faith Estimate (GFE) and the initial Truth-in-Lending disclosures will be combined into a new form called the Loan Estimate. The HUD-1 and the final Truth-in-Lending disclosures will be combined into another new form called the Closing Disclosure.

Timing is critical. According to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Closing Disclosure must be delivered and received three days in advance of “consummation” of the loan. If the Closing Disclosure is not actually received in person, the new rules require an additional three-day period if it is delivered by mail or electronically. Given that Sunday is not counted, the Closing Disclosure will have to be delivered seven days before consummation. “Consummation” will typically be the day loan documents are signed, which is usually at least one day in advance of closing but could be more.

Baker said three changes would require a new 3-day review: if the APR increases by more than 1/8 of a percent for fixed rate loans, or 1/4 of a percent for adjustable loans; if a prepayment penalty is added, making it expensive to refinance or sell; and if the basic loan product changes, such as a switch from fixed rate to adjustable interest rate or to a loan with interest only payments.

The title company representatives gave SILVAR members a list of title insurance facts they need to know, including new terms and information included in a loan estimate. They said the new rule ensures that the lender take more of a leadership role in the transaction, but every lender is different. That’s why it is very important that REALTOR® have good communication with their lender, their title officer, and their client.

“Know you client well, so you avoid surprises,” said Montalbano-Hill. “Take care of the details ahead of time. The more you know your client, the better.”

Montalbano-Hill noted that a change in the name of a newly married spouse, for instance, can cause problems if not disclosed to all parties.

Baker added, “Don’t make assumptions. Everyone is going to have to be on the same page at the same time.”



The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) announced a proposal to postpone the effective date of the new Truth in Lending Act and Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act Integrated Disclosure (TRID) rule to October 1 instead of August 1. The CFPB cited an “administrative error” and consumers’ busy schedules at the start of the school year as reasons why it is proposing the two-month delay. The National Association of REALTORS® and nearly 300 members of Congress had pushed for the delay or a period of restrained enforcement of the new rule so all parties can become accustomed to the changes.

The new rule, which is also referred to as the Know Before You Owe rule, is intended to benefit consumers by creating more accountability and offering consumers more time to understand the mortgage process and their options, but industry experts anticipate complying with the new rule could add at least a week to closings. They are concerned the potential delays might even give all-cash buyers an edge over home buyers who are depending on financing, especially when closing quickly is critical in a hot market.

The Know Before You Owe rule is essentially a consolidation of several forms. The Good Faith Estimate (GFE) and the initial Truth-in-Lending disclosures will be combined into a new form called the Loan Estimate. The HUD-1 and the final Truth-in-Lending disclosures will be combined into another new form called the Closing Disclosure.

It is the timing requirements to deliver the Closing Disclosure that have real estate professionals concerned about potential delays in the closing process. If the Closing Disclosure is not actually received in person, the new rule requires an additional three-day period if it is delivered by mail or electronically. Sunday is not counted; then add a federal holiday to the mix the Closing Disclosure may have to be delivered seven days or more before consummation.

Also, since the responsibility for compliance with the new rule falls heavily on lenders, it is very likely that lenders will retain tight control over the process of issuing the Closing Disclosure. Any last minute changes to the contract, such as seller credits to buyers or removing a loan contingency, could trigger cause for reissuance of a new Closing Disclosure. This could create further delays in the transaction.

“Starting the loan approval process early will reduce the risk of delayed closings. It is imperative that buyers work with a REALTOR® who understands these new guidelines and can prepare the buyer for all possibilities,” advises Chis Isaacson, president of the Silicon Valley Association of REALTORS®.



The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) announced on Wednesday that it would be “sensitive” to companies that make a good-faith effort to comply with the new Truth in Lending Act and Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act Integrated Disclosure (TRID) regulation that goes into effect on August 1, 2015. Although the announcement by the CFPB is less than what some members of Congress requested, which was a hard deadline five-month testing or “grace” period, it is a net win and a welcome development toward clarifying the changes coming to real estate closings on August 1.

The National Association of REALTORS® (NAR) has been leading the effort to ensure an effective implementation of the TRID regulation. NAR has advocated a period of restrained enforcement and liability for the TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure rule.

NAR will continue to have a dialogue with Congress and the CFPB to minimize possible market disruptions or uncertainty when the rule takes effect August 1. It was through member efforts during the 2015 REALTOR® Legislative Meetings and Trade Expo that more than 275 U.S. Senators and Representatives signed onto a letter to CFPB Director Richard Cordray to ask for clarification of the new rule.

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Last Thursday, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) released the “qualified mortgage” rule setting guidelines to ensure that home loans will be given only to qualified borrowers who can repay them, thus protecting consumers from predatory lending. Lenders who follow these rules in making a loan will be protected from liability.

While the QRM (qualified residential mortgage) overseen by the Federal Reserve has not yet been announced, the National Association of REALTORS® applauds the CFPB for creating a broadly defined Qualified Mortgage rule that establishes strong consumer protections while ensuring continued access to safe, affordable mortgage credit.

Under the new guidelines, which take effect on January 2014, lenders must obtain and verify an applicant’s financial information, including employment status, income, assets, debts, and credit history. Borrowers must have enough income or assets to repay the loans. Interest-only and undocumented income mortgages, including loans in excess of 30 years or in which the principal increases over time, will no longer be allowed.

Under the “ability to repay” rule set by the new guidelines, lenders will be required to look at a borrower’s ability to repay over the long term by looking at a borrower’s current income and assets, employment status, credit history, the mortgage monthly payment, other payments like property taxes and other debt obligations. A borrower’s total debt obligations, including the mortgage and other loan obligations is limited to 43 percent of the borrower’s monthly income.

There is no minimum down payment requirement for qualified mortgages. Earlier proposals of a down payment of as much as 20 percent in order to qualify for a mortgage raised concerns that such a requirement would disqualify potential borrowers from owning a home.

Banks are not required to follow either the QM or QRM rules; however, they probably will. By following the QM guidelines, lenders get a measure of protection from litigation. By following the QRM guidelines not yet announced, banks will be able to sell their loans to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

NAR urges regulators to mirror the forthcoming Qualified Residential Mortgage rule after the QM rule to ensure affordable credit remains available to qualified borrowers.


The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has released a proposed rule that would require mortgage lenders to provide home loan applicants with copies of written appraisals and other home value estimates developed in connection with the application. The rule would ensure that consumers receive information prior to closing about how the property’s value was determined.

The proposed rule would require creditors to inform consumers within three days of applying for a loan of their right to receive a free copy of appraisal reports and home value estimates. Creditors would then be required to provide the reports to consumers as promptly as possible, but no later than three days before closing, regardless of whether credit is extended, denied, incomplete, or withdrawn.

The public has until October 15 to review and provide comments on the proposed rule. The CFPB will review and analyze the comments before issuing a final rule in January 2013.





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