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US cracks down on firms making predatory mortgages to veterans

According to public records, Freedom and NewDay refinanced the home of one borrower seven times in two years between 2014 and 2016. Four of those refinances were performed by Freedom. NewDay followed with two more, and the final refinance came from a different lender.

NewDay specializes in cash-out refinances for veterans who want to take out money for purposes like consolidating debt. Its rates on most of those loans are above those of other lenders.

Joseph Murin, NewDay's chairman emeritus, said Wednesday that the firm's rates are higher because they're willing to take on more risk than others, such as through lending to borrowers with lower credit scores and letting them take out more cash. Murin said that though NewDay's loans tend to refinance quickly, that's because other lenders swoop in and pick off those borrowers, rather than NewDay refinancing them itself. He added that the company doesn't charge veterans fees on simple refinances.

Freedom Chief Executive Officer Stanley Middleman acknowledged that his company refinances some borrowers quickly but said the company doesn't charge fees to those borrowers and only uses the practice because its afraid other lenders will perform the refinance instead.

Lean in, homebuyers: Survey says lenders loosening mortgage standards

The net effect of the debt ratio policy change? “This is huge,” Paul Skeens, president of Colonial Mortgage Group in Waldorf, Md., said. “It makes it much easier for a lot more people to qualify.” Often they’re younger buyers carrying the typical burdens of starting new households along with heavy student debt. They’re also families who’ve survived challenging economic times and are paying off lingering credit card balances and other bills.

Fannie Mae’s recent change in the way it handles student loans for calculating debt ratios is another big deal. In cases where mortgage applicants are covered by income-based reduced-repayment plans, and their artificially low payment is listed on their credit reports, lenders now have the option of qualifying them on the basis of that reported amount.

About 5 million Americans participate in reduced-repayment plans. Under previous rules, lenders were forced to impute payment terms for borrowers using these plans. Even when credit reports indicated the borrowers were paying little or nothing, lenders computing debt ratios were required to factor in monthly payments equal to 1 percent of the outstanding balance on the student debt. Say the reduced repayment plan cut the required payment to $75 or to zero. Instead of adding 1 percent of the student loan balance to the applicants’ monthly debt calculation, lenders can now use the actual amount being paid under the plan — zero, if the credit report says zero.

What's the best way for me to become a Mortgage Broker in CT?

I have been a Loan Originator for a year now, but I'd like to become a mortgage broker. This way, I can shop around to different lenders to help close more loans.

You can try Countrywide, but honestly...your current position is the safer bet of the two. Mortgage Brokers and getting the short end of the stick lately and banks (like Wichovia) are no longer even dealing with them.