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Velocity moves to larger regional office

Aug 22, 2007

NAMB condemns blame shifting by MBA presidentMortgagePress.comsub-prime, mortgage brokers, foreclosures '06-'07 President Dinham calls on mortgage originators to help protect consumers On May 22, John Robbins, CMB, president of the Mortgage Bankers Association, delivered a speech to the National Press Club's Newsmakers Luncheon in Washington, D.C. His topic, "Protecting Consumer's Access to Credit," discussed the need to protect the availability of sub-prime mortgage options. In his speech, Robbins recounted the benefits of sub-prime loans, such as enabling Americans to purchase their first-ever home and realizing the American dream of homeownership. Also discussed were some of the factors contributing to the recent turmoil in the sub-prime marketplace, and some of Robbins' targets--the mortgage broker, unethical and misleading brokers, and the lack of licensing in the mortgage broker profession. "We need to once again identify the problem: unethical people," said Robbins. "Who made this mess? The short-term folks. People who get a commission when the deal happens. For them, it's the number of loans that counts. Good loan? Bad loan? Who cares. For them, it's about the commission." National Association of Mortgage Brokers has released the following statement from 2006-2007 President Harry Dinham, CMC regarding Robbins' speech. "It is truly unfortunate that the president of the Mortgage Bankers Association has attempted to shift blame away from Wall Street, federally chartered banks, state-chartered lenders and underwriters for the sub-prime situation we find ourselves in today. The hearings in the Senate and House have highlighted the fact that most residential mortgage loans are quickly sold into the secondary market; in fact, most lenders are really just brokering the transaction, but afraid or ashamed to admit it." "For the people who caused this problem, there's no such thing as a lifetime customer," said Robbins. "The closest they get is someone you refi every six months until they sink. They, not people with marginal credit, are who need to be stopped." "We all have a role to play in protecting the consumer in the mortgage process and responsible participants will stand up and say that," Dinham added. "We agree all bad actors should be held accountable. We see that in the paper every day ... the $325 million settlement with Ameriquest, lenders going under for bad underwriting standards, New Century's loan officer training consisting of a showing of 'Boiler Room.'" In his speech, Robbins detailed initiatives the mortgage industry and the MBA have undertaken to directly assist consumers who are in danger of a foreclosure and those who want to learn more about lending options. He discussed the MBA's establishment of foreclosure intervention programs in areas currently at high foreclosure risk with troubled local economies (Michigan, Ohio, Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky) by helping train and certify more foreclosure counselors through a partnership with NeighborWorks America. "Frankly, it's too easy to hang a shingle and call yourself an expert in mortgages," said Robbins. "We need licensing of brokers, with a threshold that will weed out those unwilling to be responsible, to be held accountable. Some cross the line into pure fraud, and for them we have laws. But as long as there are scam artists willing to look someone in the eye and say 'I'm going to get you something for nothing,' people will be hurt." Dinham added, "We certainly would agree with the MBA that all mortgage originators should be held to the same standards of conduct toward consumers and should be in one registry so that consumers can be protected [from] the bad actions of all originators, whether they work in a bank, state-chartered lender, credit union or mortgage brokerage. NAMB believes Congress should come forward with minimum federal standards for all mortgage originators for maximum consumer protection." For more information, visit
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