House approves changes to SAFE Act, TRID

The House of Representatives has approved a bill that modifies TRID and would ease requirements on loan originators moving from a bank to a non-bank.

The bill, HR 3978, includes changes to the Secure and Fair Enforcement of Mortgage Licensing (SAFE) Act. Under the SAFE Act as it now stands, originators who move from a bank to a nonbank or move between states must wait to be licensed before they can start originating loans again.

The amendment proposed in HR 3978 would allow originators to move from a bank to a nonbank, or across state lines, and keep originating mortgages while they’re completing their new licensing.

Industry groups cheered the bill’s passage.

“I want to comment the House of Representatives for passing this package … which will maintain the important consumer protections established under the federal SAFE Act, while offering enhanced workforce mobility for mortgage loan officers,” Mortgage Bankers Association President David H. Stevens said in a statement. “…MBA now urges the Senate to take up these provisions as part of its bipartisan regulatory relief efforts.”

The act also included proposed changes to TRID – specifically a change in the way title insurance rates are calculated. According to Rep. French Hill (R-Ark.), who originally introduced the TRID Improvement Act – which was eventually rolled into HR 3978 – the changes will provide borrowers with a more accurate disclosure of their title fees.

The consumer advocacy group Americans for Financial Reform disagreed with that assessment. In a letter to Congress urging the defeat of the bill, AFR claimed that the bill would change TRID disclosures “in a manner that would increase confusion and potentially misinform consumers as to the final cost of these important fees.”

Industry groups, however, overwhelmingly supported the bill. In an October letter to Congress, a coalition of more than 20 industry groups called the TRID change “a straightforward fix” that would benefit consumers across the country.”

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