National Mortgage Professional Magazine recently published an interesting interview with David Stevens, Assistant Secretary for Housing at the US Department of Housing and Urban Development where they discuss the new RESPA changes and the role of the broker in stabilizing the housing market.
When I talk to RMD readers, I’m always asked about the future of the broker in the reverse mortgage business. Steven’s discusses the future role of the broker in the interview:
Q: The mortgage broker has been portrayed as a major culprit in the mortgage mess by both the media and select legislators. How do you feel about that portrayal and how do you feel about the future role of the mortgage broker in getting our economy out of this mess?
A: I shudder whenever I see someone point the finger of this housing problem at any one particular area of the market. At the end of the day, and I tell this to any audience I speak to, we are all responsible. Anybody in the mortgage and housing finance sector during this boom period and saw the type of financing that was going on, I don’t care whether they are a real estate agent; a mortgage broker or mortgage banker; a loan officer at a bank; people in the ratings industry; economists at virtually all the major banks and the GSEs who said there was no housing bubble; David Bach, who went around on speaking tours and had a number one best-seller with “The Automatic Millionaire,” saying to buy up real estate … everybody is responsible for this issue.
At the end of the day, mortgage brokers are not, by any stretch, the culprits of the mortgage industry’s issues. Mortgage brokers play a very important role because they will reach into areas and serve communities where large institutions do not have the resources to do so. Having access to mortgage financing is a critical aspect of homeownership and mortgage brokers have clearly filled that need for decades.
The key to all of this is responsibility. There are good brokers and bad brokers. Just like the lenders that I have taken action against since I became FHA Commissioner, you have to eliminate the rogue behavior of an industry or the whole industry’s reputation will suffer from it. I think that is the objective of the moves we are making.
Read the rest of the interview at the link below.