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Mortgage Compliance News | Mortgage Compliance Newsletter | Mortgage Regulations
News about complying with mortgage laws, rules and regulations.


RESPA Rescue

Recent mortgage compliance activity

May 31, 2010

By SAM GARCIA


Much of the recent activity in mortgage compliance has been focused on keeping up with the changes to the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act. One law firm issued an outline of the RESPA changes for mortgage lenders. Mortgage compliance on government loans is expected to be easier as a result of a procedural change.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development said in Mortgagee Letter 2010-16 that the Federal Housing Administration has centralized and streamlined the mortgagee compliance process under one mortgage compliance manager -- Michaelson, Conner and Boul. In addition to improving the compliance process for lenders and servicers, the new structure will improve communication between FHA and mortgagees and the dissemination of information between parties.

The contractor is responsible for pre- and post-conveyance activity
.

The housing agency also unveiled its Web-based P260 Internet portal, which eliminates paper conveyance requests.

HUD's four-month grace period for its RESPA rule has ended, according to Closing.com. But HUD is expected to focus its enforcement efforts only on lenders that are the subject of complaints and are making no meaningful effort to comply.

"A lot is at stake," Closing.com said. "Some 20 million GFEs with some 50 million closing services transactions will be written this year."

Over at La Jolla, Calif.-based ClosingCorp -- which owns Closing.com -- its new SmartGFE Service helps lenders accurately comply with new Good Faith Estimate requirements. The company cited a study indicating that a "large number" of mortgage firms have been unable to implement the technology necessary to comply with new GFE requirements. The company released a compliance guarantee that ensures data used by lenders-customers will not result in a tolerance violation.

SmartGFE was introduced in early April and is reportedly available though Calyx..

An annual compliance survey announced last month the QuestSoft indicated that recently enacted fee tolerance changes tied to RESPA are the biggest compliance concern for mortgage lenders this year -- with 80 percent of the 464 survey respondents listing it as a major concern. Truth in Lending Act changes were cited by nearly three-quarters of the group, while RESPA issues worried two-thirds.

But just 15 percent expressed concern about multi-state exams that will be required by the end of this year, QuestSoft said.

QuestSoft's Compliance Eagle is an automated service that helps lenders comply with the various new requirements.

A comprehensive review of RESPA changes was outlined in a press release today from the law firm of Sally & Fitch LLP. The announcement covered GFEs, HUD-1 Settlement Statements and the level of tolerance. (read full press release)

In March, Wolters Kluwer Financial Services announced the launch of a new post-implementation audit service to help financial institutions comply with RESPA changes. Wolters claims the service "rapidly put the necessary policies, procedures and documentation in place to overcome the most common and complex challenges."

An integration of a risk analytics tool and a regulatory compliance service will enable Protiviti to support lenders in being compliant with fair lending requirements. The Menlo Park, Calif.-based company recommends that lenders establish a detailed fair lending risk assessment process, make sure all lending products and process stages are addressed and build robust monitoring and testing programs.

Cintas Document Management said Thursday that it is providing personalized consulting and secure document shredding, storage and imaging programs to help mortgage firms comply with the Red Flags Rule, or FACTA. The Cincinnati-based service provider warned that companies could face fines of up to $3,500 per violation for not complying.

While Cintas noted that the rule goes into effect Tuesday, the Federal Trade Commission announced Friday that it would delay implementation of the rule until Dec. 31 as Congress re-determines what companies will be subject to the rule.

Employees at UBS Mortgage are utilizing Edcomm Banker's Academy, for compliance training, an announcement last week indicated. Among the regulations that are covered in the program are Regulation Z, the TILA and Home Mortgage Disclosure Act.

Members of Lenders One Mortgage Cooperative will benefit from a partnership with AllRegs, a recent announcement said. AllRegs, a MortgageDaily.com advertiser, will help the members achieve compliance, underwriting and training.

A recent press release from MRG Document Technologies touted its status as a ComplianceEase RegulatorConnect Certified Partner.

A new originator forms feature in the proprietary software used by wholesale lender Caliber Funding LLC includes a RESPA-compliant GFE.

Another offering, from ENTITLE DIRECT, helps prospective borrowers utilize the new GFEs to compare and lower closing costs.


Sam Garcia worked in mortgage lending for twenty years prior to becoming publisher of MortgageDaily.com in 2000.

e-mail:
[email protected]


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