Fannie Mae Announces Changes to Speed, Simplify Underwriting

Fannie Mae today announced a series of changes aimed at making its automated underwriting more efficient and accurate and better enabling lenders to serve nontraditional borrowers. The changes are scheduled to take effect sometime in 2016.

Among other things, Fannie will require lenders to use trended credit data, to be provided by Equifax and TransUnion, when underwriting single-family loans through Desktop Underwriter. The data will show the monthly payment amounts a consumer has made on credit accounts, allowing lenders to assess whether the borrower pays in full, carries a balance or pays the minimum due.

Fannie also will build new capability that allows lenders to use its automated underwriter to help lenders serve customers with nontraditional credit histories. Currently lenders must use a manual process to underwrite such loans. Desktop Underwriter also will tap data from Equifax to offer income validation services, eliminating the need for borrowers to provide pay stubs. Fannie is looking at expanding validation to include other data, such as bank statements and tax returns.