Mortgage servicing rights remain in CFPB line of sight
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau continues to receive consumer feedback on mortgage servicing transfers – especially mass movements of loans from one shop to the next.
And if servicers are not fulfilling their obligations under federal law, the agency could seek corrective measures, Christopher Haspel, senior advisor of servicing and securitization for the CFPB, said Tuesday.
Haspel advised servicers attending the SourceMedia mortgage servicing conference in Dallas that consumer laws and other applicable statutes could apply in certain situations if servicing transfers end up harming borrowers.
One of the areas of key concern is whether the "servicer has prepared for the transfer of the rights" and has taken the appropriate steps to protect borrowers during the transfer process, the CFPB advisor said. (Click here to access the CFPB's bulletin on MSR transfers from a few months ago).
Another area of focus for servicers should be whether or not they train employees to handle consumer complaints or questions, while also providing accurate information and ensuring loan modification and delinquency status is always updated and provided to the borrower.
How the documents are handled when a new servicer is handed a borrower's records is another issue, Haspel said.
A common example of borrower frustration is a servicer’s failure to document or communicate loan repayment or loss mitigation plans to another servicer taking over the loan or a failure on the new servicer's part to consider past agreements made with the borrower.
It's important for servicers to consider policies that "ensure the new servicer properly considers previous agreements before requesting an amount due," Haspel said.
"If it’s not honored, they will have to begin the process over again," he explained.
Haspel quantified the breadth of servicing complaints, noting that more than 63,000 mortgage complaints have been handled by the CFPB.
60% of mortgage complaints, so far relate to loan modifications, collections and foreclosure.