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InfoBytes Blog

Financial Services Law Insights and Observations


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  • FDIC finalizes rule amending real estate lending

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance

    On October 22, the FDIC adopted a final rule amending the Interagency Guidelines for Real Estate Lending Policies to include consideration of the capital framework established in the community bank leverage ratio (CBLR) rule into the method of calculating the ratio of loans in excess of the supervisory loan-to-value limits (LTV limits), which applies to all FDIC-supervised financial institutions. As previously covered by InfoBytes, the FDIC issued the proposed rule to amend the Interagency Guidelines for Real Estate Lending Policies in June by proposing to establish supervisory LTV criteria for certain real estate lending transaction types and allowing exceptions to the supervisory LTV limits. Among other things, the final rule: (i) “revises the Appendix so that all FDIC-supervised institutions calculate the ratio of loans in excess of the supervisory LTV limits using tier 1 capital plus the appropriate allowance for credit losses in the denominator, regardless of an institution’s CBLR election status”; and (ii) “provides a consistent approach for calculating the ratio of loans in excess of the supervisory LTV limits at all FDIC-supervised institutions,” and “would approximate the historical methodology . . . for calculating the ratio of loans in excess of the supervisory LTV limits.” The final rule is effective 30 days after publication in the Federal Register.

    Agency Rule-Making & Guidance FDIC Federal Register LTV Ratio Community Banks Real Estate Bank Regulatory

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  • Freddie Mac releases Guide Bulletin with various selling updates

    Federal Issues

    On August 29, Freddie Mac released Guide Bulletin 2018-13, which announces selling updates, including the consolidation of Freddie Mac’s “Home Possible” and “Home Possible Advantage” mortgage programs into a single offering. The Bulletin compares the previous requirements of both programs with the new requirements of the consolidated program, which now allows non-occupant borrowers to be eligible for the program with a loan-to-value ratio less than or equal to 95%. The changes to the revised “Home Possible” mortgage program are effective October 29.

    The Bulletin also updates several mortgage eligibility and credit underwriting requirements, including (i) student loan debt payment calculations; (ii) cash back requirements for “no cash-out” refinance mortgages; and (iii) timelines for evaluating credit report inquiries. Additionally, the Bulletin provides an update to the requirements for property, flood, liability and fidelity or employee dishonesty insurance for condominium projects. 


    Federal Issues Freddie Mac Selling Guide Mortgages LTV Ratio

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  • Fannie Mae announces Enterprise-Paid Mortgage Insurance Pilot

    Federal Issues

    On July 10, Fannie Mae announced the Enterprise-Paid Mortgage Insurance (EPMI) pilot program, which offers an alternative to the standard borrower-paid mortgage insurance and lender-paid mortgage insurance options offered by private mortgage insurance companies. The EPMI program will allow lenders to deliver Fannie Mae a loan with a greater than 80 percent loan-to-value without lender-acquired private mortgage insurance as long as the lender pays a loan-level price adjustment fee. The EPMI option would then cover the loan under a forward insurance arrangement, which is acquired by Fannie Mae. Fannie Mae would also be responsible for filing the insurance claims and performing monthly reporting.

    The initial roll-out was offered to “a diverse, representative cross-section of large, medium, and small lenders” and is subject to a volume limit. Participating lenders may begin delivering EPMI loans to Fannie Mae on or after August 1.

    Federal Issues Fannie Mae Mortgage Insurance Mortgages LTV Ratio

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  • Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac update high LTV refinance ratio for one-unit, principal residences

    Federal Issues

    On May 22, Fannie Mae issued Lender Letter LL-2018-02, which updates options related to the high loan-to-value (LTV) refinance option released in September 2017 (LL-2017-05). Fannie Mae, at the direction of the Federal Housing Finance Authority and in conjunction with Freddie Mac, increased the minimum refinance LTV ratio from 95.01 percent to 97.01 percent for one-unit, principal residences. Additionally, there are no minimum credit score requirements or a maximum debt-to-income ratio for most high LTV refinances. The Lender Letter also notes that the Loan-Level Price Adjustment Matrix on Fannie Mae’s website is updated to include the high LTV refinances and provides specific loan delivery requirements.

    Freddie Mac announced the same LTV ratio change in Guide Bulletin 2018-8. The bulletin also announced, among other things, a “Credit Fee in Price” cap structure, effective on January 1, 2019, for applicable refinance mortgages. According to the bulletin, the pricing cap is designed to balance affordability to the consumer and risk to the lender. The pricing cap structure is related to the LTV ratio of the refinance and occupancy type of the property. Other updates include, (i) clarification of income stability and credit inquiries; (ii) concurrent transfers of servicing; and (iii) investor reporting change initiative.

    Federal Issues Fannie Mae Freddie Mac Refinance LTV Ratio FHFA Mortgages

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  • OCC Issues Guidance for Banks Originating Mortgages with LTV Ratios Greater than 100 Percent as Part of Community Revitalization Efforts


    On August 21, in an effort to assist in revitalizing distressed communities, the OCC released guidance for national banks and federal savings associations considering owner-occupied residential mortgage originations with loan-to-value (LTV) ratios greater than 100 percent. Bulletin 2017-28 includes, among other thing, the program criteria, which includes (i) permanent first-lien mortgages with LTV ratios exceeding 100 percent at time of origination, without mortgage insurance or other acceptable collateral, and with an original loan balance of $200,000 or less, (ii) communities that are “officially targeted for revitalization by a federal, state, or municipal government entity or agency,” (iii) a set of program policies and procedures, and (iv) providing notice to the OCC thirty days prior to starting or modifying a program.

    Established programs will be actively monitored and evaluated to examine the performance of the LTV loans, and the programs as a whole will be evaluated at least annually to determine the extent to which they are aiding in revitalization efforts. Depending on its findings, the OCC reserves the right to amend or rescind Bulletin 2017-28, but maintains that any loans originated in agreement with the required provisions will not be affected “solely because of any measurable amendment or rescission of this [B]ulletin.”“Bank lending under such a program may serve the credit needs of individual borrowers and the community, and the bank may receive Community Reinvestment Act consideration depending on the specifics of the program,” the OCC noted.

    Lending Agency Rule-Making & Guidance OCC CRA Mortgage Origination LTV Ratio

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