CFPB seeks to ‘streamline’ mortgage servicing rules

Consumer Financial Protection Bureau Director Rohit Chopra said today that the agency will soon propose ways to simplify and streamline mortgage servicing rules, pointing to temporary changes that sought to protect borrowers during the pandemic as a possible guide for future action.

The CFPB in 2021 enacted temporary safeguards to ensure that borrowers had a “meaningful opportunity” to be reviewed for loss mitigation before the servicer was able to make the first notice or filing required for foreclosure on certain mortgages. The agency also directed mortgage servicers to offer certain loan modifications to borrowers experiencing pandemic-related hardships. In a blog post on the CFPB website, Chopra noted that last year the agency sought public input on ways to reduce risks for borrowers who experience disruptions in their ability to make mortgage payments. “According to commenters, the temporary pandemic-related changes we made to the mortgage servicing rules helped alleviate this problem and get borrowers accommodations more quickly,” he said.

Chopra didn’t provide any specifics on what changes the CFPB would propose or provide a timeline for when they would be introduced. “We will propose streamlining only if it would promote greater agility on the part of mortgage servicers in responding to future economic shocks while also continuing to ensure they meet their obligations for assisting borrowers promptly and fairly,” he said.