Mortgage

Fannie, Freddie plan to modify credit scoring, servicing, appraisals

FHFA releases outlines of GSE conservatorship priorities

The Federal Housing Finance Agency announced Thursday the release of its 2018 Scorecard, which outlines the conservatorship priorities for the GSEs.

The FHFA announced Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are expected to maintain, in a safe manner, credit availability and foreclosure prevention activities for new and refinance mortgages in order to foster liquid, efficient, competitive and resilient national housing finance markets.

“FHFA expects the Enterprises to efficiently and effectively operate their single-family and multifamily business activities in a manner that supports safety and soundness, market liquidity and access to credit,” the agency announced.

The agency announced one of the responsibilities the two mortgage giants are tasked with is continuing to identify opportunities to improve access to credit in a safe and sound manner.

Wednesday, the FHFA took the next step to changing credit scoring models by requesting input from interested parties on the possibility of changing its credit scoring models.

The FHFA instructed Fannie and Freddie to, if appropriate, prepare to implement a new credit scoring model, a process years in the making.

In addition to expanding homeownership opportunities, the GSEs are also expected to continue to gather and report to the FHFA information needed to inform policy decisions regarding single-family rentals, and assist FHFA in assessing single-family rental strategies.

In November, Fannie Mae said it will begin to devote more attention to mortgage servicing technology. Now, the FHFA is directing both GSEs to assess the challenges of the servicing market and potential solutions for improving the borrower experience, expanding liquidity and increasing efficiency.

The GSEs will also look more closely at the appraisal market as they research, assess, and begin planning for appraisal process modernization, which could include revised appraisal forms and data requirements. Fannie and Freddie are already testing appraisal-free mortgages in limited circumstances.

The GSEs were directed to finalize their post-crisis loss mitigation toolkit, including foreclosure alternatives and short-term hardships.

They will also need to continue to support access to credit for borrowers with limited English proficiency, including finalizing multiyear language access plans and beginning the plan’s implementation.

Photo credit: Shutterstock.com

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