Just when some lenders and real estate agents are saying underwriting is getting better, six Federal agencies are working to get tougher, stricter requirements for becoming a home owner passed into law. Here are three things they want:
1) Bigger down payment. They want you to make 30% down payment to get the best interest rate and best terms. Ouch! How many first-time home buyers have that kind of cash? This would force tens of thousands of borrowers to take a higher rate, even if they have great credit.
2) Stricter credit requirements. Even with the sub-prime loans far in the rear view mirror, they want even higher standards for credit. This will decrease home sales and home ownership, which is counter-productive to growing our economy.
3) Ban combo loans. They want to ban getting a second mortgage in combination with a first mortgage to avoid paying the monthly private mortgage insurance (PMI). So the strategy of putting 10% down, taking an 80% first mortgage with a 10% second mortgage to save money would become illegal. I have to ask, why are they trying to force everyone who doesn’t have 20% down into paying PMI?
The six agencies asking for this are the following:
1) The Federal Reserve
2) The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.
3) The Federal Housing Finance Agency
4) The Dept. of Housing and Urban Development
5) The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency
6) The Securities and Exchange Commission
Who Does NOT Want Stricter Home Ownership Requirements:
1) The National Association of Realtors
2) The Mortgage Brokers Association
4) Mortgage Bankers Association
5) Private U.S. citizens
David H. Stevens, CEO of the Mortgage Bankers Association and a member of the coalition opposing the plan says, “We plan to be very clear and very vocal” in fighting this. I say, “You go, Mr. Stevens, and go strong!”
If you don’t want to see this 505-page proposal become law, please make your voice heard by contacting your state representation and saying you are against “QRM-Plus.” And please make others aware of this via Twitter, Facebook, email, and other means, because home ownership affects us all.