CFPB Proposes Raising HMDA Coverage Thresholds

Written By: Joel Palmer, Op-Ed Writer

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has proposed raising coverage thresholds for collecting and reporting data about closed-end mortgage loans and open-end lines of credit under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA).

The bureau said the new thresholds would help small lenders. The proposed rule change would also clarify partial exemptions from certain HMDA requirements that were added in the Economic Growth, Regulatory Relief, and Consumer Protection Act.

The “proposed changes would provide much needed relief to smaller community banks and credit unions while still providing federal regulators and other stakeholders with the information we need under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act,” said CFPB Director Kathleen L. Kraninger. “The public is encouraged to submit their comments on the proposals, which will be considered by the Bureau before the next step is taken.”

CFPB is proposing two alternatives to amend Regulation C to increase the threshold for reporting data about closed-end mortgage loans.

The new rules, if enacted, would permanently increase the coverage threshold from 25 to either 50 or 100 closed-end mortgage loans. Therefore, institutions that did not meet the enacted threshold in either of the two preceding calendar years would not have to report such data as of January 1, 2020.

For open-end lines of credit, the proposal would extend for another two years the current temporary coverage threshold of 500 open-end lines of credit. Once that temporary extension expires, CFPB proposes that the open-end threshold be set permanently at 200 open-end lines of credit. 

In October 2015, the bureau set the closed-end threshold at 25 loans in each of the two preceding calendar years, and the open-end threshold at 100 open-end lines of credit in each of the two preceding calendar years.

In 2017, CFPB temporarily increased the open-end threshold to 500 open-end lines of credit for two years (calendar years 2018 and 2019).

You can comment on the current proposal, identified by Docket No. CFPB–2019-0021 or RIN 3170-AA76, by:

•Doing so through the Federal eRulemaking Portal at www.regulations.gov.

•Emailing comments to the following address: 2019-NPRM-HMDAThresholds@cfpb.gov. Include Docket No. CFPB–2019- 0021 or RIN 3170-AA76 in the subject line of the message.

•Mailing comments to: Comment Intake, Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection, 1700 G Street NW, Washington, DC 20552.

The bureau also seeks information on the costs and benefits of reporting certain data points under HMDA.

It wants comments about the costs and benefits of collecting and reporting the data points the 2015 HMDA Rule added to Regulation C and certain preexisting data points that the 2015 HMDA Rule revised. It also seeks comments about the costs and benefits of requiring that institutions report certain commercial-purpose loans made to a non-natural person and secured by a multifamily dwelling. 

The bureau indicated in its bulletin that it has heard concerns since issuing the 2015 and the 2017 HMDA Rules. The concerns have been about the burden associated with reporting certain data points relative to the value of the information in serving HMDA’s purposes.

CFPB has also heard continuing concerns about Regulation C’s coverage of certain business or commercial-purpose loans.

You can submit comments, identified by Docket No. CFPB-2019-0020, by:

•Doing so through the Federal eRulemaking Portal, www.regulations.gov. Follow the instructions for

•submitting comments.

•Emailing comments to the following address: 2019-ANPR-HMDA@cfpb.gov. Include Docket No. CFPB-2019-0020 in the subject line of the message.

•Mailing comments to: Comment Intake, Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection, 1700 G Street, NW, Washington, DC 20552.


About the Author

As an NAMU® Opinion Editorial Contributor, Joel Palmer is a freelance writer who spent 10 years as a business and financial reporter and another 10 years in marketing for the insurance and financial services industries. He regularly writes about the mortgage industry, as well as residential and commercial real estate, investments, and retirement income planning. He has also ghostwritten books on starting a business, marketing, and retirement income planning.


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