September 2016 - Women in Housing

TheMReport — News and strategies for the evolving mortgage marketplace.

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16 | TH E M R EP O RT FEATURE great confusion as some lenders will force the loan to be exempt. We currently see lenders disclos- ing in many ways and since there is no clear guidance, there is no uniformity from lender to lender." DeBrock is right. Many HFA loans are exempt from TRID guidelines while other loan struc- tures require the GFE disclosure form if the closing cost fees are within a certain threshold. With cumbersome and confusing rules, it makes it more difficult and less likely for mortgage bankers to offer these wonderful programs which promote homeownership to low- to moderate-income families. With all that said, we need to remember that the mission of the regulatory rules is to HELP the homebuying process, and we have come a long way over the past several decades. Kim Johnson, Program Development Specialist with Colorado Housing and Finance Authority, reflects on changes she has seen: "In the early '80s, I went to a Federal Reserve Seminar about wealth disparity between whites and minorities. I was struck by the way that homeownership has the power to help families build wealth. Before fair housing laws were established following World War II, Caucasian families bought homes in the suburbs while many minorities were redlined into particular neighborhoods. Because of redlining, those homes didn't appreciate like homes in the suburbs did and when those minority homeowners died and left their heirs their estates, those estates weren't as large as those left by white homeowners. I was excited in the mid '90s when the lending industry moved to automated underwriting decisions which allowed the purchasing process to be more fair and con - sistent for all buyers." Pamela Shinsel remembers when interest rates were 11 per- cent in the late '80s and qualifying for a mortgage was not as entailed as it is today. Shinsel believes there have been so many good and positive changes over the years, but on the other hand, she said, "I also feel that because of these changes it's tougher at times for a homebuyer to qualify for a mortgage and the qualification process takes so much longer." Tia Boatman Patterson, Executive Director of the California Housing Finance Agency, has a uniquely intimate appreciation for the role govern- ment can play in housing. "My mother bought her first home with help from an assistance program," Patterson said. "I've seen first-hand how homeowner- ship can make a huge difference by increasing standards of living and making progress towards eradicating poverty. The challenge for us now is that there is such a limited inventory of homes for the folks who want to make the jump from renting to owning." "There are just so many hurdles for the first-time homebuyer right now, in addition to the limited in - ventory," continues Patterson. "It's harder to save for a down pay- ment. Graduates are coming out of school with crushing student debt. Increased fees and costs make it economically harder for developers to build entry-level homes." Increased Importance of Technology I n order to have a competitive advantage, Burns said, "Lend- MCS Valuations is committed to providing the best possible service and most reliable value to our clients. Backed by industry-leading data and experts with decades of experience, MCS Valuations is your trusted resource for all of your valuation needs. 8 0 0 . 7 9 1 . 7 1 4 5 | M C S V A L U A T I O N S . C O M | I N F O @ M C S V A L U A T I O N S . C O M

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