CFPB Announces First Step to Student Loan Affordability Plan

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau announced the development of a policy plan that would help private student loan borrowers pursue more affordable repayment options. The CFPB is seeking input from the public, including financial institutions, colleges and universities, and professional associations on their recommendations on various issues related to repayment affordability. Comments will be accepted through 04.08.2013. Click here for more information.

CFPB Outlines Mortgage Servicing Rules

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau plans to outline rules to help protect mortgage borrowers from getting hit by costly surprises. The new rules, which are expected to be finalized in January 2013, would provide consumers with clear and timely information about changes to their mortgages. The rules under consideration include clear monthly mortgage statements, warnings before interest rate adjustments, options for avoiding costly force-placed insurance, and options for avoiding foreclosure. Click here for more information.

HUD Offers Support for Homeless Programs

U.S. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Secretary Shaun Donovan awarded nearly $201 million to support 731 new local homeless programs across the country. The funding is part of the Obama Administration’s plan to prevent and end homelessness and provide critically needed emergency shelter, transitional housing, and permanent support for individuals and families. Click here for more information.

FHFA Announces Pilot REO Property Sales Program

The Federal Housing Finance Agency announced the first pilot transaction under the Real Estate-Owned (REO) Initiative, targeted to the hardest-hit metropolitan areas - Atlanta, Chicago, Las Vegas, Phoenix, and parts of Florida. Prequalified investors will be able to submit applications to demonstrate their financial capacity, experience, and specific plans for purchasing Fannie Mae-owned foreclosed properties with the requirement to rent the purchased properties for a specified number of years. Click here for more information.

U.S. Bank Invests in National Wholesale Lockbox System

U.S. Bank launched a new national wholesale lockbox technology platform for business and government customers. Bank clients can use new electronic services including web decisioning, which allows customers to view images of an exception item and decide whether to reject or process it; split deposits, so users can have one lockbox but distribute individual payments into separate accounts; and accounts receivable matching, to automatically reconcile payments against outstanding invoices and further automate the cash collection cycle. Click here for more information.

Bank of America Launches Hardest Hit Fund Program

Bank of America announced its agreement to leverage the federal government's Hardest Hit Fund (HHF) through participation in unemployment assistance programs in 18 states. States that are participating in HHF unemployment assistance programs are Alabama, Arizona, California, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, Mississippi, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, and the District of Columbia. The HHF programs target low and moderate income homeowners. Additional eligibility criteria are determined by each state’s HFA. Click here for more information.

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