Tag Archives: Qualified Mortgages

Big changes to mortgages next year!

The Qualified Mortgage Rule is taking effect on January 1st of 2014.  what does this mean for the prospective borrower?

It could be a lot.  First we must explain what is defined as a Qualified Mortgage.

A Qualified Mortgage is a mortgage that is assumed to be non risky and that the lender has done adequate qualifying to ensure the borrower can repay the loan.  the consumer Finance Protection Bureau released this definition earlier in the year.  To see the exact definition, here’s a link:


Lenders who do not make Qualified Mortgages will have to retain 5% of the loan on their books as a hedge against the risk of default.  this is not an ideal situation for lenders, as they want to sell the loan to an agency like Fannie Mae and simply service the loan.  Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are probably not going to buy a non qualified mortgage as of this time, so essentially all conforming loans will have to be Qualified Mortgages.

What are the features of a Qualified Mortgage?

     No Excessive Upfront Points  and Fees-Points and fees cannot exceed 3% of the amount borrowed

No Toxic Loan  features Interest only, negative amortization, balloon payments and terms over 30 yrs. are prohibited.

Limits on Debt-to-Income  Ratios-The new standard will be 43% of total debts to pre-tax income.


Who is likely to be affected by the new Qualified Mortgage rules?

Jumbo loans for those seeking to borrow more than $417,000 in most areas

Borrowers with high debt to income levels.  right now, it is possible to get up to 50% debt to income level approvals if the borrower is strong in other regards, but that will go away with the new rules.  Most of the time, this comes up when a borrower is buying g a new home but hasn’t sold their old home and is trying to qualify with both house payments for the short-term.

Borrowers seeking to buy down the rate.  Paying discount points to get a lower rate will probably not be an option once the Qualified Mortgage rules go into effect.  the 3% cap would not allow for that.

Borrowers buying less expensive homes.  If there is that 3% cap on fees and the borrower is paying $475 for an appraisal, $600 in title fees, and say $1000 in other fees, that would mean any loan under $69167 would be a high cost loan according to the Qualified Mortgage rule.  Here in our market, Boise Idaho, there are some homes that fall under that price.

Mortgage Brokers typically have to charge a 1% fee on top of the other fees and that can put them over the 3% cap.  I expect to see the rate on brokered loans to increase to cover this fee.  Many Mortgage Brokers are changing to Mortgage Banker if they can as they do not have that extra fee, typically.

The next few months will see many changes to the market.  It will be important to keep a local lender who stays up to date with those changes.




















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