IndyMac Back in the News; First Time Homebuyer Comments; Ocwen's Servicing Audit Not Stellar
IndyMac is back in the news. Last week a jury ordered three former IndyMac
loan officers (in the homebuilder division) to pay $168 million to the FDIC for
negligently approving 23 loans to developers who never repaid them. The
FDIC said the lenders had "significant departures from safe and sound banking
practices," driven by a desire to get bonuses. Here is the dirty laundry.
And folks wonder why the lending industry is cautious about making loans...
"Rob, is there a better alternative being discussed to credit
score underwriting? For example Mississippi has the lowest scores in
the nation, but also the lowest default rates." Not that I know of. In the
"old days," Thornburg was known for doing "make sense" loans, and
certainly the old subprime companies like Household or Beneficial (the training
grounds for many good folks) would encourage lending if the loan officers felt
they could collect on the loans. But at this point, although there are some
portfolio products or private banking models, I don't see a lot of variance
from the standard underwriting models in place - companies are busy enough as
it is with vanilla product underwritten to vanilla standards.
Turning to the jobs front, in San Jose fast growing Western Bancorp is
searching for loan officers, account executives, and operations staff. If
you're highly organized, productive and passionate please apply online and/or
visit Western's career page.
And in Southern California, seasoned mortgage broker Back Bay Funding is
seeking experienced and talented loan officers to join a very established team
of originators and processors, many of which have worked together for many
years. Back Bay Funding is a mid-size firm located in Irvine, CA and works
with over 35 lenders (backbayfunding .com).
Originators have the ability to generate conventional, jumbo, VA, FHA,
construction, commercial and private loans, along with portfolio and private
banking products, and take advantage of fast turn times, and very competitive
commissions. Loan officers will need to be DRE and NMLS licensed to be
compensated; satellite offices welcome. For inquiries contact Darren McLellan
or Amisha Hansji at Darren@backbayfunding .com
or Amisha@backbayfunding .com.
What if husbands were treated like FHFA directors, and only "acting?"
("Oh, him over there? He's my acting husband.") Maybe Ed DeMarco will
apply to one of the jobs above. Well, probably not, but he is probably looking.
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that the Obama Administration is
planning to name a permanent Director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency,
perhaps as soon as the beginning of next year. Nick Timiraos reports that,
while the White House has declined comment, sources familiar with the
Administration say officials are gathering names of potential nominees but have
not yet whittled it down to a short list or interviewed anyone for the post.
Edward J. DeMarco has been Acting Director of FHFA since August 25, 2009,
replacing James B. Lockhart. Did you know that in almost 5 years the FHFA
has never had an actual director? They're always "acting," since
the government seems unable to come to enough of a consensus and confirm
someone. Officials are said to be considering an array of candidates: financial
regulators or professionals, academics, and current administration officials.
does this mean for the average guy in the biz? Replacing
Mr. DeMarco could give the administration greater latitude to expand
initiatives to refinance underwater borrowers or to embark on a tailored
principal forgiveness program. Any replacement would also play an important
role guiding any process of overhauling Fannie and Freddie as the
administration prepares to unveil more details about its preferred course. That's
right - another refi program to keep us all busy!
If you think servicing is a walk in the park, just ask Ocwen. A review of
Ocwen's mortgage servicing practices has found indications of non-compliance
with recent servicing reforms, New York's Department of Financial Services
announced. In a release, Superintendent Benjamin Lawsky said a review of
Ocwen's business showed that "in some instances, the company failed to
demonstrate that it had sent out required 90-day notices before commencing
foreclosure proceedings or even that it had standing to do bring the
foreclosure actions." The exam also found that Ocwen sometimes failed to
provide a single point of contact for borrowers, pursued foreclosure actions on
borrowers seeking loan modifications, failed to conduct an independent review
of loan mod denials, and failed to ensure that borrower and loan information
was accurate and up to date. He added that the examination of Ocwen's servicing
practices came about after the department received complaints about the
company. Following the examination, the department is now requiring that Ocwen
hire an independent monitor to review its operations and identify and report on
corrective actions. And those recently announced deals to acquire ResCap and
Homeward Residential's servicing assets? Well, they seem to be on hold: http://www.dfs.ny.gov/banking/ea121205.pdf.
On Saturday, just in time for Sunday's open houses, the commentary
discussed how the first time home buyer had been left out of the recent
excitement. Deb S., a top Realtor from California, wrote,
"Unfortunately for our overall well-being, those purchasers were investors
and first-time homebuyers cannot compete with cash. Period. So, they are
scrambling like crazy and running from property to property and simply get
beaten out (either due to the terms or they can't even make a decision as
quickly as a number-oriented buyer can) every time. I am witnessing HOA
being slow to react, with management not well-trained or asleep at
that wheel, and they are not making any rules about what % of units must be
owner occupied and the result is the complete makeover of many complexes into
below 50% owner occupancy and thus, unable to get a loan. The homeowners aren't
informed from the management, they have no idea who is buying, what the
repercussions are, and they are suddenly in a home they cannot refinance and
must sell at a substantially lower price when our market stabilizes and the
investors slow down. I can't wait for prices to take a jump up so the market is
in balance and homeowners can sell again with some equity and the buyers are a
more balanced lot... OR maybe what really needs to happen is for rents to drop
off their highs and those properties won't look as appealing. Nothing good came
out of the Vegas buyout or the Arizona buyout and they are happening all over
again - this time add Reno plus many, many more. Can I interest you in
And another note regarding Saturday's commentary came from Mike L. who wrote,
"I have a comment on the "lack" of first time homebuyers that actually are
buying homes. By my experience, it's not for the lack of them trying. I have
pre-qualified a multitude of First Time Homebuyers and they are writing offers
on homes. Typically they are using either FHA financing or Conventional financing
with 5% to 10% down (some even with 20% down). However they are typically
writing offers on lower priced "entry level" properties. These properties are
also very attractive to investors, so we are getting constantly beat to the
punch by investors using all cash or very large down payments. It's hard to
blame the seller. Why wouldn't they take an "all cash, higher priced offer"
over the lower down payment first time buyer? Some of my first time buyers have
been trying for well over a year to have their offers accepted. Combine this
with the lack of inventory here in Southern California and the problem is
amplified even further."
about some relatively recent investor and vendor news?
Barbara Werth with Mortgage Training Today points out that in reading a
recent blog there was a statement in there about "FNMA requiring 5% down.
I am including for you a link to the single family guide stating that the minimum
down is 3% and it does not have to be the borrower's own funds. FHLMC
requires 5% of the borrower's own sourced and seasoned funds. Now, of
course PMI still have to be considered and MGIC is the only company that will
do PMI on these loans. There is information is located here: http://www.mgic.com/pdfs/71-40600_uwguide.pdf."
And Barbara also points us to https://www.efanniemae.com/sf/guides/ssg/sg/pdf/sel082112.pdf#page=426
(FHLMC). Thank you!
Starting December 10th, the FHA will accept manual delivery of credit
scores and will be adding a field to the Connection Insurance Application
in order to differentiate between Credit-Qualifying and Non-Credit Qualifying
Streamline refinances. The credit type indicator will become mandatory on
March 31, 2013.
In response to the large number of suspensions and post-purchase defects
associated with large deposits, Citi reminds clients that the source of
funds must be documented if they're coming from an account that was either
opened within 90 days of the mortgage application or if they exceed 25% of the
borrower's total monthly qualifying income. This applies to the sum of
unexplained deposits that meet the large deposit criteria as well.
Citi has also issued a few general reminders about asset verification, the
first being that verification documents should not be more than 45 days old at
the time of application and 50 days old as of closing. The funds required
for closing as per the HUD-1 must either match or be less than the value
disclosed on the AUS findings, and AUS findings that reflect required assets
should either meet or exceed the amount verified through documentation.
No more than 60% of the face value of retirement accounts can be used to
calculate the amount of available funds, and all retirement accounts must be
verified with the two most recent months' bank statements after having
subtracted any outstanding loans and, if required for closing, proof of
Effective for all HASP Open Access and DU Refi Plus products, Fifth Third is
now basing the expiration date of HARP programs on the Application Received
Date rather than the Note date for new mortgages. All new loans must have
application dates on or before December 31, 2013.
Turning to the markets, Monday was a snoozer, but here is what one
trader noted yesterday: "So far in December we've seen slightly lower
origination numbers and expect these decreased volumes to continue which has us
bullish on the basis." If originators are indeed seeing things slow down a
little, the production environment could become interesting. If home loan rates
stay here for the next year or so, the pool of available loans for refinancing
will drop. Two big wild cards, however, are a) the purchase market heating up
due to the economy picking up steam, or b) the government introducing yet
another refi program. There are a lot of experts thinking (b) is exactly what
is going to happen. Regardless, things are pretty quiet, interest rate-wise,
and this morning we find the 10-yr pretty close to where it closed Monday,
which is pretty close to where it was all last week (it is currently around
1.64%). And MBS prices this morning might be slightly worse - but don't look
for much change on rate sheets as companies may just absorb the difference into
We're entering the college football bowl season, so how about part 2 of 2 of
gridiron humor? (Suitable for changing to any school - don't send me "you
insulted my daddy's alma matter" e-mails please.)
If three Florida State football players are in the same car, who is driving?
The police officer.
How can you tell if an Auburn football player has a girlfriend? There's tobacco
juice on both sides of the pickup truck.
What do you get when you put 32 Arkansas cheerleaders in one room? A full set
University of Michigan Coach Brady Hoke is only going to dress half of his
players for the game this week; the other half will have to dress themselves.
How is the Indiana football team like an opossum? They play dead at home and
get killed on the road.
Why did the Nebraska linebacker steal a police car? He saw "911" on
the side and thought it was a Porsche.
How do you get a former Illinois football player off your porch? Pay him for