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CFPB Issues Proposal to Clarify Mortgage Data Rule and Help Companies Comply
Friday, April 14, 2017 6:30 AM

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau on Thursday issued a proposal to facilitate compliance with the 2015 updates to the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) rule. The changes proposed would help financial institutions comply with the 2015 HMDA Final Rule by clarifying the information they are required to collect and report about their mortgage lending.

“The Home Mortgage Disclosure Act shines a much-needed spotlight on the mortgage market, which is the largest consumer financial market in the world,” said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. “Today’s proposal reflects the Bureau’s ongoing and substantive engagement with stakeholders in the marketplace, and will help industry meet its new reporting obligations.”

HMDA, which was originally enacted in 1975, requires many lenders to report information about the home loans for which they receive applications or that they originate or purchase. The public and regulators can use the information to monitor whether financial institutions are serving the housing needs of their communities, to assist in distributing public-sector investment so as to attract private investment to areas where it is needed, and to identify possible discriminatory lending patterns.

As directed by the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act, the CFPB updated the HMDA regulation in 2015 to improve the quality and type of data reported by financial institutions. Most of the updated requirements take effect in January 2018, and the industry is working to bring operations into compliance. Through public outreach and engagement the CFPB has identified opportunities to clarify parts of the 2015 HMDA Final Rule, which would help financial institutions comply.

Thursday's proposal contains a number of clarifications, technical corrections, and minor changes to the HMDA regulation, including clarifying certain key terms, such as “temporary financing” and “automated underwriting system.” The proposal would also, for example, establish transition rules for reporting certain loans purchased by financial institutions. Another proposed change would facilitate reporting the census tract of a property, using a new geocoding tool the CFPB plans to provide online. 

The CFPB seeks input from a wide range of stakeholders and invites the public to submit written comments on the proposal. The proposal will be open for public comment for 30 days after its publication in the Federal Register.

View a copy of the proposed rule.