MReport June 2020

TheMReport — News and strategies for the evolving mortgage marketplace.

Issue link:

Contents of this Issue


Page 60 of 67

M R EP O RT | 59 O R I G I NAT I O N S E R V I C I N G DATA G O V E R N M E N T S E C O N DA R Y M A R K E T THE LATEST GOVERNMENT Delgado to Rep. Waters: 'Stop Politicizing a Pandemic' House Financial Services Committee Chairwoman Maxine Waters requested communications sent by banks to borrowers. S everal members of the House Financial Services Committee, including Chairwoman Maxine Waters, sent letters to the nation's largest mortgage servicers, request- ing information on their commu- nication about relief to borrowers with federally-backed mortgages under the CARES Act. "Millions of homeowners will rely on the relief included in the CARES Act as they struggle to make timely mortgage pay- ments in the coming months," the lawmakers wrote. "As one of the largest servicers of federally- backed mortgages, it is critical that you communicate consistent and accurate information regarding the options available to borrow- ers who are unable to make their mortgage payments due to finan- cial hardship that is directly or indirectly related to the pandemic. Similarly, borrowers seeking as- sistance must be able to contact a customer service representative without excessive wait times or other delays." Congressman Gregory Meeks (D-New York), Chair of the Subcommittee on Consumer Protection and Financial Institutions; Congressman Wm. Lacy Clay (D-Missouri), Chair of the Subcommittee on Housing, Community Development, and Insurance; and Congressman Al Green (D-Texas), Chair of the Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, were included in the letter. The Committee sent letters to the following banks: » Bank of America Corporation » JPMorgan Chase & Co. » Lakeview Loan Servicing, LLC » LoanCare LLC » Mr. Cooper Group, Inc. » New Rez, LLC » PennyMac Financial Services, Inc. » Quicken Loans » Truist Financial Corporation » U.S. Bancorp » Wells Fargo &Company Efforts by MReport to obtain comments by several of these banks by press were not returned. The Committee requested ad- ditional items from the indicated banks, including all policies and procedures effective as of or since March 27, 2020, related to accept- ing and processing requests for forbearance; applicable standards and requirements for approving forbearance requests; and initiat- ing and continuing foreclosure proceedings. The Committee also requested training materi- als, instructions, and call scripts provided to customer service employees since March 27. The Committee also requested screen- shots of all information provided on their websites, including an online platform to make mortgage payments. Addressing the needs of pandemic-impacted homeown- ers has been a primary focus for the industry over the past two months. Government agencies such as Ginnie Mae, HUD, and FHFA have announced updated guidance or programs designed to address best practices and potential servicer shortfalls during this period. The U.S. Congress passed the CARES Act to provide borrowers with federally backed mortgage protection, including a 60-day moratorium on foreclosures, which is set to expire on May 17. However, one early concern that remains is liquidity as mortgage servicers are required to continue making payments on mortgage-backed securities to investors, despite a loss of revenue on the front end as more home- owners enter into forbearance plans as a result of COVID-19 economic impacts such as lost jobs or other financial struggles. Addressing the mortgage servic- ing industry's ongoing response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Ed Delgado, President and CEO of Five Star Global, said, "U.S. finan- cial institutions reacted swiftly and responsibly to decrease the number of homes that could enter foreclosure and help the millions of Americans whose livelihoods are at stake." Delgado added, "The petti- ness of politics is a corrosive agent, eroding confidence in the mortgage industry. At a time when we look to our business and political leaders for support, the inference that mortgage banks failed to respond in a timely and proper manner to the national health crisis is both reckless and irresponsible." More than 26 million Americans have filed unemploy- ment claims over the past five weeks.

Articles in this issue

Archives of this issue

view archives of TheMReport - MReport June 2020