CFPB Proposes Amendments to Regulation X

On April 5, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) proposed a set of amendments to the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act (Regulation X) aimed at preventing avoidable foreclosures as the federal foreclosure protections expire. The proposed changes would establish a special pre-foreclosure review period, which would generally prohibit servicers from initiating a foreclosure process for primary residences through December 31, 2021. The proposed changes would also permit loan servicers to offer certain streamlined loan modification options to borrowers with pandemic-related financial hardships, which would include permitting the evaluation of an incomplete application to get borrowers into an affordable mortgage payment faster and with less paperwork. These proposed changes would help ensure that borrowers impacted by the pandemic’s economic fallout have an opportunity to be evaluated for loss mitigation before the initiation of foreclosure. The CFPB estimates that nearly 1.7 million borrowers will be behind on their mortgages in September 2021 and the following months, with many of them a year or more behind on their mortgage payments. Public comments on the proposed changes to Regulation X are due by May 11, 2021.

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