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HUD affordable housing request for info

HUD has announced it has published a Request for Information seeking public comment on federal, state, local, and tribal laws, regulations, land use requirements, and administrative practices that artificially raise the costs of affordable housing development and contribute to shortages in America’s housing supply. This RFI is a request for members of the public to share their knowledge and provide recommendations to HUD regarding regulations and practices that unnecessarily impede housing supply and information on innovative practices that promote increased housing supply. Comments are due by January 21, 2020.


Military travel lender and servicer settle with CFPB

The CFPB has announced settlements with Edmiston Marketing, LLC, also called Easy Military Travel, its principal, Brandon Edmiston, and USA Service Finance, LLC (USASF). Easy Military Travel, which was located in Murray, Kentucky and is no longer operating, offered and extended financing for airline tickets to military servicemembers and their families and was owned and managed by Edmiston. USASF, which is located in Mayfield, Kentucky, is a company that services travel-related loans, including loans made by Easy Military Travel, for servicemembers.

The Bureau found that Easy Military Travel and Edmiston misrepresented the true cost of credit in violation of the Consumer Financial Protection Act of 2010. The consent order issued against Easy Military Travel and Edmiston requires restitution to servicemembers and their families who paid the hidden finance charges by imposing a suspended judgment for restitution in the amount of $3,468,224 and a $1 civil money penalty.

The Bureau found that USASF, which serviced travel loans made by Easy Military Travel, engaged in deceptive practices in violation of the CFPA by overcharging servicemembers and their families for a debt-cancellation product for loans financing airline tickets made by Easy Military Travel and purchased and serviced by USASF. The Bureau also found that USASF violated Regulation V, which implements the Fair Credit Reporting Act, because it never established, reviewed, or updated any written policies or procedures regarding the accuracy and integrity of the consumer information it furnished to consumer reporting agencies.

The consent order against USASF requires it to provide redress to borrowers who were overcharged for the debt-cancellation product, including paying $54,625 in restitution to borrowers with no outstanding balance on their loans and issuing additional restitution in the form of account credits to borrowers with outstanding balances. The consent order also requires USASF to pay a civil money penalty of $25,000 to the Bureau. The consent order prohibits USASF from collecting on or selling the travel loans purchased from Easy Military Travel. The consent order also requires USASF to establish and update reasonable written policies and procedures for the accuracy and integrity of consumer information it furnishes to consumer reporting agencies.


Fed report on rural bank branch access

The Federal Reserve Board has released a report, "Perspectives from Main Street: Bank Branch Access in Rural Communities," that examines how rural consumers and small businesses use bank branches and how their communities have been affected by branch closures.


CFPB report on student IDR plans

The Bureau has released a new Data Point document describing how borrowers fare on IDR (income-driven repayment) plans. This Data Point provides new background on which types of student loan borrowers use IDR, how their delinquencies on student loans and other credit products evolve as they transition onto IDR and thereafter, and borrower experiences with the enrollment recertification process. This research uses the Bureau’s Consumer Credit Panel (CCP), which is a panel of a nationally representative 1-in-48 sample of de-identified credit records, to identify and analyze likely IDR borrowers and to provide broader and more comprehensive statistics on IDR borrowers over the past decade.


FDIC TRID Rule teleconference scheduled

The FDIC has issued FIL-73-2019 announcing the agency will host a teleconference on December 11, 2019, for FDIC-supervised institutions to provide information and answer questions relating to the TRID Rule, including a review of common issues and tips to help banks address and avoid mistakes. The program, "Understanding the Requirements of the Truth in Lending Act (Regulation Z) and Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (Regulation X) Integrated Disclosure Rule (TRID Rule)," is scheduled to run from 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. ET.

  • Registration is required.
  • Following a formal presentation, FDIC staff will respond to questions during a Question-and-Answer segment. Institutions should submit questions by December 4 by sending an email to


NMLS updates Policy Guidebook

The NMLS has posted an updated version of its NMLS Policy Guidebook, including a new section on Temporary Authority to Operate. The NMLS also posted a summary of the updates to the guidebook.


FHA incentives to rehab Opportunity Zone homes

HUD Secretary Carson has announced that the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) will offer a new incentive for borrowers interested in rehabilitating homes in Opportunity Zones. FHA is expanding its Limited 203(k) Rehabilitation Mortgage Insurance Program (available to owner-occupant homebuyers and existing occupant homeowners for the purchase and/or rehabilitation of single family homes) for homes located in Opportunity Zones.


CFPB compares large and small mortgage servicers

The CFPB has released a report examining the differences between large and small mortgage servicers. The report explores the role servicers of different sizes play in the mortgage market where size is defined by the number of loans serviced. Because of differences in the resources, capabilities, customer base, and business models of financial institutions of varying sizes, the impact of consumer finance regulations can vary as well. Key findings in the report include:

  • 74 percent of borrowers with mortgages at small servicers said having a branch or office nearby was important in how they chose their mortgage lender, compared to 44 percent at large servicers;
  • delinquency rates on loans at servicers of all sizes increased substantially starting in 2008, but peak delinquency rates were much lower for small servicers than for large and mid-sized servicers; and
  • smaller servicers have a greater share of mortgages in non-metro or completely rural counties.


NCUA Board approves two measures

The National Credit Union Administration Board has announced its unanimous approval of two items on the agenda for its November 21 open meeting:

  • A final interpretive ruling and policy statement to expand career opportunities for individuals convicted of certain minor offenses.
  • A proposed rule raising the threshold for requiring a residential real estate appraisal from $250,000 to $400,000.


MLA site scheduled for maintenance

The MLA website has posted a notice that it will be unavailable during planned system maintenance beginning at 6 p.m. EST on Tuesday, December 17, 2019, to "12 a.m." EST on Wednesday, November 18, which we have interpreted to mean the "downtime" will run for about six hours, until midnight.


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