Fed seeks comment on proposed changes to Regulation Z

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WASHINGTON DC - The Federal Reserve Board has proposed for public comment changes to Regulation Z (Truth in Lending) that would revise the disclosure requirements for mortgage loans. The revisions would implement the Mortgage Disclosure Improvement Act (MDIA) which was enacted in July 2008 as an amendment to the Truth in Lending Act (TILA).

The MDIA seeks to ensure that consumers receive cost disclosures earlier in the mortgage process. In several respects, the MDIA is substantially similar to final rules issued by the Board in July 2008 but it also broadens and adds to those regulatory requirements.

The MDIA requires creditors to give good faith estimates of mortgage loan costs ('early disclosures') within three business days after receiving a consumer's application for a mortgage loan and before any fees are collected from the consumer, other than a reasonable fee for obtaining the consumer's credit history. These requirements are consistent with the Fed's July 2008 final rule, which applied to loans secured by a consumer's principal dwelling. The MDIA broadens this requirement by also requiring early disclosures for loans secured by dwellings other than the consumer's principal dwelling, such as a second home.

The proposed rules would implement the MDIA's requirements, and under the new rules, creditors would have to wait seven business days after they provide the early disclosures before closing the loan. Creditors provide new disclosures with a revised annual percentage rate (APR) and wait an additional three days before closing the loan, if a change occurs that makes the APR in the early disclosures inaccurate beyond a specified tolerance.

The proposed rules would permit a consumer to expedite the closing to address a personal financial emergency, such as a foreclosure. Under the MDIA, the proposed rules would become effective on July 30, 2009. The public comment period ends January 23, 2009.

Click here for the notice that will be published in the Federal Register

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