HomeStreet fined for RESPA violations

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HomeStreet Bank in Seattle will pay a nearly $1.4 million fine for violating the Real Estate Settlement Procedures Act.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. said in a press release Wednesday that the $7.2 billion-asset HomeStreet violated RESPA when it entered into agreements with real estate brokers to co-market services through online platforms. The bank also ran afoul of the law when it agreed to rent space in the offices of brokers and homebuilders.

"While co-marketing arrangements and desk rental agreements are permissible where the fees paid bear a reasonable relationship to the fair market value of marketing or rental costs, such arrangements and agreements violate RESPA when the amounts paid exceed fair market value and the excess is for referrals of mortgage business," the FDIC said.

HomeStreet agreed to the fine without admitting or denying the violations.

The bank has since discontinued home loan center-based mortgage banking< It also terminated the co-marketing and desk rental agreements.

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