October 07, 2013

NAFCU works to advance 'Mortgage Choice Act'

NAFCU lobbyists, with a coalition of 10 other associations, are working with Rep. Bill Huizenga, R-Mich., in support of H.R. 3211, the "Mortgage Choice Act," which would modify the definition of "points and fees" used to determine whether a loan meets the qualified mortgage standard set by CFPB.

CFPB's QM and ability-to-repay provisions take effect in January. Huizenga's legislation is aimed at ensuring consumers continue to have access to affordable housing under the Dodd-Frank Act. It would revise the definition of "points and fees" under the act by excluding all title charges (instead of just certain ones, as provided in current rules) and clarify escrow charges.

The exclusion of title charges from the definition of "points and fees" is intended to:

  • help maintain a competitive marketplace;
  • prevent higher prices or the withdrawal of affiliated title service providers in low- and moderate-income marketplaces; and
  • preserve consumers' ability to obtain all mortgage-related services from one provider when they purchase or refinance their home.

H.R. 3211 cosponsors include Reps. Greg Meeks, D-N.Y., Ed Royce, R-Calif., David Scott, D-Ga., Steve Stivers, R-Ohio, Gary Peters, D-Mich., Spencer Bachus, R-Ala., Betty McCollum, D-Minn., Patrick Murphy, D-Fla., and Mike Doyle, D-Pa.The bill awaits action of the House Financial Services Committee.

In March, Huizenga introduced H.R. 1077, the "Consumer Mortgage Choice Act," which is a more detailed version of the "Mortgage Choice Act." Huizenga introduced the slimmed-down, streamlined version with the intention of getting it passed before the CFPB's QM and ability-to-repay rules go into effect.