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New Law Affects Good Faith Estimates

Contributed by: Glen Bremer, Alpine Mortgage Planning Office: 503-718-9856

We begin 2010 with some major changes to the Good Faith Estimate and how it is used. You’ve most likely heard about the new law that went into effect January 1, 2010 stating that mortgage advisors must now honor all lending fees they quote in their Good Faith Estimate. They must also stand behind the estimates they quote for other third party fees including title and escrow and government charges – absorbing the difference themselves if it is more than 10%.

This change has served to make the concept of a Good Faith Estimate a misnomer. It is, essentially, a binding commitment.

For this reason, we are going to follow the guidance of the Department of Housing and Urban Development (who passed this new regulation) and will not issue a GFE until we have a complete loan application, including an accepted offer on a property. Instead of providing a GFE during the clients’ pre-approval/home shopping process, we will now provide a different Closing Cost Worksheet that clearly breaks down all of the anticipated costs, the rate, payment and estimated funds due at closing. Any potential buyer would likely appreciate it if they knew how much they would actually have to pay at the end of a purchase, in which regard pages like or other similar pages can help as well. Once the loan application is complete and an offer to purchase has been accepted, we will then have all of the necessary figures and information to complete a binding GFE.

To make a long story very short-While clients are in the pre-approval and shopping phase of their loan, we will send them a clear and accurate funds to close/closing cost worksheet. GFEs will be sent only after a full application has been received, credit has been pulled and the client has had an offer accepted on a home.

I honestly believe that these changes will have many positive effects on our industry since it will drastically limit the ability of lenders to bait-and-switch. However, it does now require us to be absolutely certain that we have all necessary and essential information prior to issuing a GFE.

Glen BremerMortgage AdvisorAlpine Mortgage Office: 503-718-9856

Note from Bella Casa Real Estate Group: We encourage you to view a list of mortgage vendors on the Bella Casa website. There you will find a wide range of mortgage brokers, such as Glen Bremer, and other banks and lending institutions.

Disclaimer: Bella Casa Real Estate Group and its brokers do not have affiliated business relationships with these individuals or businesses. We do not receive any form of compensation for recommending their services. The only benefit we receive is knowing that our clients will be well-served by local, accountable professionals. It is our pleasure to refer these individuals and businesses on the basis of their exceptional past performance but we cannot guarantee anything in providing this reference guide. No one on our website can pay to have their information displayed; it is provided as a courtesy to them and for our clients on the basis of merit only. Anyone listed here will be removed when we believe they fail to live up to high standards of service, integrity, and value.


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