The National Association of Mortgage Bankers today praised the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau and its Director Richard Cordray for taking steps to revise mortgage rules designed to facilitate lending in rural and underserved areas.

NAMB went on to strongly urge the agency to quickly address the need for regulatory relief for mortgage professionals unfairly targeted for unnecessary and harmful regulations in the aftermath of the financial crisis of 2008.

"Any regulation relief that helps a group of consumers is a good start," said John Councilman, NAMB President, "but it's way past time for Director Cordray and the CFPB to acknowledge that mortgage professionals were not responsible for causing the financial crisis."

Councilman added that the CFPB needs to offer “real regulatory relief to the thousands of mortgage professionals” who are both small business owners and the best advocates for consumers.

 "The real irony under the current set of rules is that many community banks and credit unions essentially act as mortgage brokers because they operate as indirect lenders by outsourcing their mortgage underwriting and using a warehouse line to fund loans," Councilman said. "If Director Cordray truly wants to help consumers make sure that healthy market competition with consumer protections are maintained, he should use the authority given to the CFPB by the Dodd-Frank Act to eliminate the inclusion of creditor payments to mortgage brokerage entities in the 3% cap on points and fees.”

Councilman added that if the CFPB does not fix this issue soon, low and moderate income consumers may be harmed by paying a higher mortgage rate than they would otherwise qualify for, thereby creating a potential disparate impact.