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Closing Documents Remain Elusive, but Change Coming

Lenders’ reluctance to share closing disclosures (CDs) with REALTORS® rose in the 2nd quarter of 2016 according to responses to NAR’s Survey of Mortgage Originators. Under the new Know Before You Owe or TRID rules, the HUD-1 closing form was replaced with the CD. In the past, REALTORS® frequently reviewed the HUD-1 for their clients or answered clients’ questions. However, many lenders have refused to share the new closing documents citing legal liability concerns.

This pattern worsened in the 2nd quarter as 64.3 percent of lenders indicated that they do not share the CD, up from 54.5 percent. No respondents indicated that they share the documents outright.

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Sharing of the CDs may become easier, though. On July 28th, after this survey was closed, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau clarified that lenders can in fact share the documents. The CFPB noted that certain exceptions within lending laws allow lenders to share the documents when it is a usual, appropriate, or acceptable method, “to provide the customer or the customer’s agent or broker with a confirmation, statement, or other record of the transaction, or information on the status or value of the financial service or financial product.”[1] Lenders can comment on the CFPB’s clarification through October 28th.

With this clarification lenders may feel enabled to share the CDs more freely. NAR will continue to monitor.

Ken Fears, Director, Regional Economics and Housing Finance

Ken Fears is the Manager of Regional Economics and Housing Finance Policy. He focuses on regional and local market trends found in the Local Market Reports and the Market Watch Reports . He also writes on developments in the mortgage industry and foreclosures.

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