October 2016 - Changing of the Guard

TheMReport — News and strategies for the evolving mortgage marketplace.

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40 | TH E M R EP O RT O R I G I NAT I O N S E R V I C I N G A NA LY T I C S S E C O N DA R Y M A R K E T ORIGINATION THE LATEST Mortgage Complaints Slipping on CFPB's Complaint List Once leading the pack, mortgages now falls behind debt collection and credit reporting on the CFPB's list of most complained-about financial products. A s the Consumer Financial Protec- tion Bureau (CFPB) approaches 1 million complaints handled in its five- year history, mortgages have taken a back seat behind debt collection as the most com - plained-about financial product, according to the Bureau's latest monthly complaint snapshot released at the end of August. As of August 1, 2016, the CFPB has handled approxi - mately 954,000 complaints on various financial products. For the longest time, mortgages were the most com - plained-about product, but they were re- cently surpassed by debt collec- tion complaints. The CFPB began accept- ing complaints about mortgages on December 1, 2011, and has since handled nearly a quarter of a million (239,703) complaints. The Bureau began accepting complaints about debt collection a year and a half later, on July 10, 2013, but has accepted more complaints in that category (254,773) than mortgages or any other category in just three years. Mortgages were the third-most complained about financial prod - uct in July 2016, according to the report. First was debt collection (6,546) and second was credit re- porting (5,382). In July, the Bureau took in 3,910 complaints about mortgages. These three categories combined for about two-thirds of the complaints the Bureau received in July. The monthly complaint snap - shot highlighted bank account or service complaints, on which the Bureau has received approxi- mately 94,200 complaints in the last five years. "Complaints about the use of consumer and credit reporting data for account screening are increas - ingly common," the report stated. "Consumers frequently mention learning of a furnisher's past nega- tive reporting to both specialty checking account reporting and national credit reporting compa- nies when they attempt to open a new bank account. Consumers also express concern over the dif- ficulty that they have addressing potential errors on their reports." The three main credit reporting agencies, Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion, were the top three complained-about companies in July, with complaint totals of 1,430; 1,247; and 1,077, respectively. The company that has received the most complaints over five years is Bank of America with 57,199. Non-Conventional Financing Becoming Slightly More Popular Non-conventional financing increases half a percentage point in 2015. N on-conventional forms of financing have been gaining traction in the single- family housing market, account - ing for more than a third of the market in 2015, according to the most recent Census Bureau Survey of Construction. In all, 34.5 percent of new single- family homes were purchased with non-conventional financing in 2015, up by half a percentage point from 2015 (34 percent), according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB). Non-conventional financ - ing—which includes cash pur- chases, loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), loans insured by the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), the Rural Housing Service, Habitat for Humanity, loans from individuals, state or local government mortgage- backed bonds—were most popular in the West South Central region of the U.S. (Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana) and in the South Atlantic region (Florida, Georgia, the Carolinas, Virginia, West Virginia, Delaware), where they accounted for 40 percent of single-family home purchases in 2015. New England was right behind with 39 percent. The East South Central region (Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee, and Kentucky) was the least depen - dent region on non-conventional fi- nancing in the single-family housing market in 2015, with only 16 percent of the market—less than half the national average for the year. According to the NAHB, while the West South Central and New England regions posted similar high shares of single-family homes purchased with non-conventional financing in 2015, the breakdowns in the types of non-conventional fi - nancing they used were different. In the South Atlantic and West South Central, VA and FHA-backed loans accounted for 26 percent and 21 percent of the market, respectively; while in New England, only 3 per - cent of the market was comprised of FHA-insured loans. The most popular form of non-conventional financing in New England in 2015 was cash, with more than a third of homes started in 2015. Overall in 2015, the share of FHA-insured mortgages for homes started increased from 2014, ac - cording to NAHB. The Pacific and South Atlantic divisions have the highest share of FHA-insured mortgages for new single-family homes in 2015 with 19 percent and 18 percent, respectively. "This was largely due to a reduc - tion in FHA mortgage insurance premiums implemented at the start of 2015," wrote Natalia Siniavskaia, Ph.D., NAHB AVP for Housing Policy Research. "As a result, FHA-backed loans regained their status as the most prevalent form of non-conventional financing of new home purchases—the status they temporarily lost to cash pur - chases a year earlier following the implemented decline in the 2014 FHA loan limits." The share of new single-family homes financed through VA-backed loans remained relatively stable from 2014 to 2015 at 6 percent, while the cash share declined from 13 percent in 2014 down to 10 percent in 2015. The 13 percent share in 2013 marked the first time since 2007 that cash purchases were the most popular form of non-conventional financ - ing for new single-family home purchases. "Complaints about the use of consumer and credit reporting data for account screening are increasingly common."

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