Borrowing a page from the credit card industry, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are prodding mortgage lenders toward risk-based pricing as a way to build loan volume.

By using credit scores based on borrowers' histories and on collateral to set the price of a loan, lenders can safely extend credit to more customers, according to advocates of risk-based pricing. Leland Brendsel, chairman of Freddie Mac, said the technique is a key to continued growth in the mortgage industry.

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