Servicers must also follow a similar amount of time when a consumer requests for information in writing, either by providing the information or explaining why it's not available.
Exemptions for Smaller Servicers
There are also a handful of exemptions and adjustments for smaller servicers, including community banks and credit unions. Unlike the first proposal, the CFPB gave an exemption to institutions that service less than 5,000 mortgage loans and only mortgages that they or an affiliate originated or own.
A senior CFPB official said during the call Wednesday that the bureau set this threshold based on comments, including from the Small Business Administration. This threshold would cover nearly 99% of the community banks and credit unions across the nation, the official said.
"These exceptions and adjustments should help reduce burdens for these institutions that have strong consumer service safeguards already built into their business models," the bureau said in its rule summary.
Even More to Come
Cordray also hinted at "other rules" for the mortgage market to be released this month that will prohibit "unsafe lending practices." The agency is also expected to ramp up enforcement and supervision of those regulations.
"We believe that the CFPB is likely to concentrate more on servicing in the coming quarters once it finalizes the rules," said Jaret Seiberg at Guggenheim Partners, in a note released Wednesday prior to the issuance of the final rules. "In our view, this is an area where many Democrats believe that consumers get taken advantage of. So they want to see more attention to servicing enforcement."