Sep. 29: Mortgage jobs; RESPA-TILA and other webinars & events this week; a primer on extending rate locks

I had an English teacher whose favorite saying was, “Grammar is the difference between feeling you’re nuts and feeling your nuts.” What about the difference between obtaining a mortgage from your employer versus your local bank? Is it against the law for an employer to provide an employee with better-than-market rates? KPMG hopes not. And the only thing I could find employer-assisted mortgage programs (EAMs) from the government was published by the OCC in 2007 – and we all know what was going on in 2007.


I have been asked to help a leading California-based multi-billion dollar national mortgage banker is seeking a Chief Investment Officer to join its executive management team. The ideal candidate, reporting to the Chairman/CEO, will be fully versed in all aspects of mortgage asset management, with a primary focus on establishing and managing the company’s planned Real Estate Investment Trust, while possessing strong interpersonal and communication skills.  The CIO will have direct supervision of all asset allocation analysis and complete day-to-day decision authority for the company’s investment decisions.  A BS/BA degree (MBA preferred), along with a demonstrated track record of 10+ years’ experience in mortgage asset management, 5 of which must be in management of a public REIT, is required. Interested candidates are encouraged to submit their resume and compensation requirements, in confidence, to me at


Gold Star Mortgage, one of the nation’s premier lenders, is employing an explosive national growth strategy through acquiring independent, successfully run small to mid-sized mortgage companies in key markets.  Demonstrating a decades long, winning formula for growing highly profitable branches, this expanded platform of acquisition is their logical next step in coast-to-coast expansion. Gold Star’s Business Development Team will be attending the MBA Annual Convention & Expo in Las Vegas, October 19th through the 21st, and will be available for confidential discussions regarding available opportunities. Daniel Milstein, Gold Star CEO, best-selling author and nationally renowned Sales Coach will also be in attendance. In order to schedule a meeting next month in Vegas or to speak with Business Development Specialists at any time, contact Shawn Sirko. Headquartered in Ann Arbor, MI, Gold Star Mortgage Financial Services Group, Corp has become one of the fastest growing companies and top 50 mortgage lenders in the nation. Founded in 2000 and currently operating in 23 states, Gold Star’s commitment to relationship-based customer service, cutting edge technology and a superior operations infrastructure fuels its stability and success. Gold Star has been recognized as an Inc. 500/5000 company, and most recently by Mortgage Technology Magazine as one of the nation’s Top Tech-Savvy Lenders.


How about some upcoming events of note? Tomorrow, September 30 at 1PM EST, Vantage Production’s VIP Executive Advisor is partnering with Hammerhouse, LLC to present: Recruiting Top Producers and Leaders in Today’s Market. “Recruiting managers, sales and production executives can get details and sign up for this free webinar, presented by Drew Waterhouse and Steve Rennie of Hammerhouse, at VIP.


Hey – don’t forget to sign up for that CFPB/Federal Reserve webinar this Wednesday titled “Frequently Asked Questions on the TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosures Rule, Part 3.” The CFPB has announced that it will hold a meeting of its Credit Union Advisory Council on October 1, 2014.  The meeting will be take place in Washington, D.C. and Director Cordray is scheduled to attend.  According to the agenda, the meeting topics will be overdrafts and consumer complaints.  Attendance requires an RSVP.


K&L Gates is offering up a live webcast Thursday 10/2 at 12PM EST titled, “Telemarketing and the Telephone Consumer Protection Act—Avoiding Traps and Minimizing Risk”. “The program will include an in-depth discussion, followed by a lively Q&A session on a variety of issues involving the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA)… restrictions on texting and other types of communications, issues around ‘Automatic Telephone Dialing Systems’, ‘Prior Express Consent’ and revocation, damages and standards for finding knowing and willful violations, defense of class certification, compliance and telemarketing issues, and insurance coverage”. Register here.


(That may serve to answer the question I received from a reader last week. “My company is starting to receive leads from Zillow and I am trying to figure out if we are in violation of the Do Not Call Policy if we don’t run the consumers number against the do not call list prior to calling them. Before the consumer submits their contact information on Zillow, there is a disclaimer that says ‘when you click submit, we’ll pass your information to your lender so they can follow up with you.’ Is this considered “a consumer providing consent affirmatively, in writing?”


Attorney Brian Levy recently had some thoughts on do-not-call rules. “The do-not-call rules are specific to contacting someone by phone and the potential penalties for violations pose significant class action type risks. I am unfamiliar with what Zillow’s authorization says, but I would be reluctant to advise my lender clients that it’s ok to rely on a generic authorization that Zillow can share information with third parties to call a consumer. Ideally, the authorization would specifically authorize a particular (named) lender to contact the consumer by telephone for the purpose of discussing mortgage financing opportunities. To be blunt, many believe that you are inviting trouble if the consumer isn’t expecting a phone call from you. Frankly, if someone is on the ‘do not call’ list they probably don’t want to be contacted by phone for anything, even if you have an authorization to do so. As a result, it is always prudent to check the do not call lists and avoid calling such individuals for any solicitation. This is an important topic, and I would want it to specifically authorize contact by phone. Otherwise, I think contact by email is what the consumer may expect.”)


The Arizona Association of Mortgage Professionals is having its “Education and Fall Expo” this Friday and Saturday in Phoenix.


The Northeast Conference of Mortgage Brokers, October 14th-16th, comprehensive 1 1/2 day will provide the tools and understanding needed to comply with CFPB’s and State Regulations MBA NJ registration.


The MBA is proposing to demystify secondary marketing in just two 90-minute webinars. Register for the first in this 2-part series, part 1, November 5th, Understanding the Mystery of Secondary Marketing.


The Colorado Association of Mortgage Professionals is offering a Webinar October 15th. This class introduces the Real Estate Agent and Mortgage Professional to the new Closing Disclosure established by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and the associated changes affecting the RESPA documents, Good Faith Estimate, Truth-In-Lending, and HUD1/HUD1A Settlement Statement.


Register by mail or fax for the 24th Annual Fannie Mae Day on November 12th. MBA-NJ, NJAMB, PAMB & MBA-PA Members are free, Non-Members cost is $45.


Last week reverse mortgage experts were buzzing about the CFPB’s announcement directly addressing reverse mortgages. A good write-up, with a link to the CFPB announcement, can be found here. Okay, “abuzz” is too strong of a term. The CFPB repeated the pros and cons of the program. Summed up with, “According to the CFPB, recent changes mean a non-borrowing spouse may be able to continue to live in the home under certain conditions, even after the spouse who signed the loan passes away. However, the non-borrowing spouse will still stop receiving funds from the reverse mortgage after his or her spouse dies. The only option for a surviving spouse to continue to receive monthly payments or use the existing line of credit is if the couple takes out the reverse mortgage together in the first place.”


At the end of the week we also saw another lender involved in a settlement with the government, this time involving The False Claims Act and Reunion Mortgage. “The initial complaint alleged that Reunion engaged in reckless underwriting of certain loans and falsely certified to FHA that those certain loans met HUD’s requirements and were eligible for FHA insurance when they were not actually eligible.”


“Hey Rob, my Capital Markets gal is charging me almost 5 basis points a day for an extension. What’s up with that?” I am not going to step on your company’s extension policy, but 5 might be a little steep. Often times rate sheet pricing is calculated to dissuade LOs or brokers locking in for a short period, even if they can’t realistically close a loan during that period, and then extending the lock. Right now, for example, the drop from one month to the next is about 10/32, or nearly .125 in price per week. The more common question is, “Why do longer term locks have a worse price?” One can blame the yield curve. Or you could say that a dollar today is worth more than a dollar a month from now. According to forward securities pricing theory, the front month price should be higher than the back month price. The drop is a function of current short-term interest rates, prepayment estimates, and the supply and demand for MBS in the current (front) month. To check, there are ways to obtain MBS prices. For example, Mortgage News Daily has a service that many subscribe to in order to check on the markets. And if you are passionate about learning more, a recent paper by Zhaogang Song and Haoxiang Zhu should make its way onto your bedside table.


Those working in capital markets (and hedging pipelines) do their best to manage rate lock periods, rate sheet pricing, and the drops from one month to the next. For example, if the drop from one month to the next is only .125 when the loan is locked in, but then widens out to .250 during the lock period and the LO needs a 30-day extension, that is a problem. And regulators know that managing interest rate risk is an issue – and not only in hedging a pipeline. According to the FDIC, there has been a 24% increase in interest rate risk management related comments in the Matters Requiring Board Attention section of examination reports over the last 3 years. Items flagged included: the need to develop strategies to improve monitoring/control; establishing risk tolerance parameters for model results; enhancing models to capture risk; and increasing board oversight and understanding of the bank’s models. From 2010 to 2013, IRR MRBA’s have jumped from 17% of all reports of examination up to 30%


Volatility is picking up somewhat in the markets – and the Fed hasn’t even ended Quantitative Easing. Economic indices point in the same direction – strength – but rates are being kept in check by events overseas. Sales of new U.S. single family homes in August hit their highest level in more than six years. The data signaled that the housing recovery remains on course. The recovery however sits against a backdrop of relatively high unemployment / underemployment and sluggish wage growth (+2.1% over the last year) which is sidelining first-time homebuyers. First-time homebuyers make up 29% of the market, well below the 40 – 45% considered ideal by economists. New home sales jumped 18% to a seasonally adjusted 504,000 units, the second straight monthly gain and the highest level since May 2008. While new home sales only account for about 9% of the market, the improved data help put fears at bay after a surprise decline in home re-sales last month. And new orders for capital goods (Durable Goods) rebounded in August adding further evidence to the underlying strength in the economy. And Initial Jobless Claims are near their pre-recession levels. Lastly, we learned Friday that Gross Domestic Product grew at a 4.6% rate in the second quarter.


And not even including what might happen in China, Russia, or the Middle East, the news continues this week. Today we have Personal Income and Consumption/Outlays along with some PCE Deflator numbers and Pending Home Sales. Tomorrow are the S&P/Case-Shiller numbers, with their two-month lag, the Chicago Purchasing Manager’s Survey, and Consumer Confidence. On Wednesday, October 1st, ISM Manufacturing Index will produce the survey results from 300 manufacturing firms nationwide. Thursday is Jobless Claims. On Friday we’ll have the unemployment data!


After a 2.54% close Friday for the 10-yr’s yield, the unrest overseas over the weekend (mostly the protests in Hong Kong) has caused a flight to the dollar. And one way to invest in dollars is to buy U.S. securities, and thus we’ve seen a rally: the 10-yr. is down to 2.50% and agency MBS prices are better by nearly .125 – lagging.



Picures from the Past – It is amazing the difference in 70 years. Yes, this actually requires a little work on your part, but it is pretty cool. Click on the site, and when a photo comes up, left click, hold it, and drag your mouse gently from left to right over the original photos and they will become exactly the same location today. (Drag it back over and you are in 1944 again.) How do these IT guys do it??


(Copyright 2014 Chrisman LLC. All rights reserved. Occasional paid job listings do appear. This report or any portion hereof may not be reprinted, sold or redistributed without the written consent of Rob Chrisman.)

Rob Chrisman