By Margaret Kelly
With interest rates creeping up in recent months, some homebuyers have had to adjust their game plans—and their price ranges—in order to make their move. But even with slightly higher interest rates, home affordability remains very attractive.
One key issue with the potential to put a damper on buyers’ dreams of homeownership seems to be getting the attention it deserves. Regulators are looking to soften the Dodd-Frank requirements that could’ve had a tremendous impact on millions of homebuyers in the form of strict lending regulations.
If you’re unfamiliar with Dodd-Frank, here’s a brief synopsis. When the downturn hit, lawmakers blamed banks and other lenders with doling out risky subprime loans to borrowers who couldn’t really afford them. To protect consumers from this type of activity and avoid another housing collapse, Congress passed the Dodd-Frank Act, which, in turn, created the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).
The CFPB is now tasked with establishing the specific definitions of a “qualified mortgage” and the “qualified residential mortgage.” The result of these regulations is that only borrowers with the most pristine credit could qualify for a home loan. Others would either not be able to obtain a loan or would be forced to pay much higher rates.