NAMB to Obama: Level the playing field for all mortgage originators

by MPA31 Mar 2015
John Councilman, president of the National Association of Mortgage Brokers (NAMB), has called on U.S. President Barack Obama to update his speech material to reflect the current realities of the mortgage business, particularly with individual mortgage professionals and the role of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

"It is my hope, as our President, that you will speak more positively of mortgage brokers," stated Councilman. "They are providing the most cost-effective origination channel, the widest variety of programs, and the best customer service. I believe you can honestly be assured that mortgage brokers provide a wonderful alternative to the large banks."

Councilman stressed to Obama that no one has worked more diligently to prevent another financial crisis than mortgage brokers. He says the NAMB has worked with state legislators to pass laws to regulate mortgage brokers and mortgage originators and in July 2008, Congress passed the S.A.F.E. Act with input from the NAMB. The act licensed all non-bank mortgage originators. After this, the Federal Reserve created an anti-steering rule with NAMB input. According to Councilman, all of these happened before the creation of the CFPB.

Councilman went on to note that in its recent advisory on "mini-correspondents," the CFPB concluded that mortgage brokers offer "important consumer protections" not available to consumers through other channels.

"The CFPB's complaint database reveals extreme consumer satisfaction with mortgage brokers, far exceeding that of any other segment of the finance industry, and that mortgage brokers accounted for less than one-tenth of one percent of the complaints," he added. "Bank originators have less rigorous requirements as well as less stringent criminal background standards. Brokers have a vested interest in providing good service because they live and work in the communities they serve."

Councilman also requested in his March 30, 2015 letter that President Obama encourage the CFPB to level the playing field for all mortgage originators.

"The maintenance of a competitive mortgage market was called for under Dodd-Frank but has not been realized," said Councilman. "There are instances where mortgage brokers are unable to help borrowers due to current regulations, making the borrower's only choice a large bank, if they receive a loan at all."

The letter from NAMB to President Obama can be found here or by visiting 


  • by Tim | 3/31/2015 9:37:32 AM

    Now level the playing field by stopping these illegal/unethical kickbacks to real estate brokers in the form of marketing agreements. These agreements are a complete joke and a way for mortgage lenders to buy business. Call it what you want but the entire industry realizes what they are.

  • by Marc Savitt, NAIHP | 3/31/2015 9:57:11 AM

    Tim is exactly right. In fact, the CFPB recently indicated they consider MSAs a "thing of value." A thing of value for the referral of business is a RESPA violation. Enforcement of these violations is another matter.

    Speaking of buying business, yesterday-the House Financial Services Committee passed the Mortgage Choice Act out of Committee. This Bill is bad for brokers!! It once contained a provision to eliminate lender paid comp from the 3% points and fees calculation. However, it was removed with little or no opposition from NAMB. WHY?? What is left in the Bill helps affiliated business arrangements, which often freeze brokers out of transactions with their "preferred lenders" or phony incentives and discounts.

    Like NAIHP, NAMB should be opposed to this bill.

  • by griff | 3/31/2015 10:00:04 AM

    Could not agree more, Tim. Not good news from Marc. It is amazing to me that real estate brokers can sit an affiliated lender INSIDE their office, insist the agents use them regardless of whether they are good for the client, and this is not illegal. I keep getting reminded that the cfpb and Washington in general are not there to protect the consumers, but man, affiliated arrangements are just bad.


Is TILA-RESPA a good or bad thing long term?