2016 Fall Newsletter

Posted by admin on Oct 11, 2016 11:38:00 PM
“Making You Look Good is Our #1 Priority ”

What’s New:

CSS Implements DocMagic’s Total eClose Solution

CSS recently implemented DocMagic’s Total eClose solution, which is an end-to-end e-closing solution that aids compliance.

“We recognized early on that in order to differentiate ourselves from a crowded marketplace, it was paramount to offer elevated service to our clients,” said Jerome Jelinek, CEO and general counsel at CSS. “With the addition of DocMagic’s Total eClose, we offer lenders the opportunity to transform their mortgage origination process through the elimination of paper, thereby significantly reducing costs and increasing efficiencies.”

DocMagic’s Total eClose functionality unites e-note, e-signature, e-notary, MERS e-registration, e-delivery, and e-vault services. In addition, documents that need to be notarized can be conveniently e-signed and e-notarized without leaving the comfort of home.

“We are excited that CSS is successfully leveraging our Total eClose solution to provide a completely electronic closing process for their customers,” said Dominic Iannitti, president and CEO of DocMagic. “As a settlement service provider, it is impressive that CSS has taken a leading role in promoting the benefits of eClosings and as an early adopter, they will enjoy a significant advantage over their competitors.”

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau’s TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosures (TRID) rule) increased liability for lenders and their assignees. Because of this, companies that originate, sell, buy or service loans, must be able to demonstrate TRID compliance years after a loan closes. DocMagic says its system provides electronic proof and evidence of compliant transactions for future audits with a date and time stamp audit trail of everyone who has touched the transaction at any level. From the original loan application and Loan Estimate (LE) to receipt of delivery of the final Closing Disclosure (CD), data and documents are all stored in an e-vault to provide the ability to replicate proof of compliance.

With TRID’s increased compliance requirements and soon the implementation of the new Uniform Closing Dataset (UCD) requirement, DocMagic believes fully-electronic transactions can help lenders meet strict timing requirements and provide the ability to recreate compliance checks at every point in the transaction.

1031 Exchanges. The Federation of Exchange Accommodators (FEA) Conference recently held its annual conference, providing excellent speakers on a range of 1031 topics and brought everyone up to speed on the year’s changes, regulations, lawsuits, etc… One thing I came away with is to be glad we are not in California. California is more highly regulated and challenging than ever before. In addition, as previously mentioned in past newsletters, over the past couple of years there have been several pieces of legislation proposed to eliminate or limit 1031 exchanges. The FEA paid for a micro and macro study which explained both the benefits of a 1031 exchange to more than just the taxpayers that were deferring gains and also the detrimental effect it would have on the economy to eliminate or limit 1031s. This issue is still in the forefront of the exchange industry and FEA members will continue to testify in front of Congress and meet with their representatives in Washington to keep §1031 intact.

New Recording Fees. As of October 1, 2016, the fee for recording a mortgage, assignment, release, deed or judgment for the majority of Michigan counties is $30.00 (“flat fee”), regardless of the number of pages. Charter counties, such as Macomb and Wayne, have the right to opt out of the changes and, instead, create their own home rule charters tailored to their unique circumstances as specified in the Charter County Act, MCL 45.501 et seq. Wayne County has in fact opted out of such. As always, if a discharge or assignment attempts to discharge or assign multiple mortgage liens in the same county by single discharge or assignment, the county will continue to charge an additional $3.00 per mortgage that is discharged or assigned by that single discharge or assignment.

The flat fee provides consumers certainty as to the cost of recording real estate documents. The flat fee will also reduce the Registers of Deeds’ burdens of counting pages and rejecting recordings based on incorrect calculation of pages. Finally, the flat fee should expedite the closings of real estate transactions otherwise delayed as a result of lender compliance with Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (“CFPB”) regulations. The lender may not always know the number of pages of a mortgage three days before closing. If the recording charges the lender states in the CD turn out to be incorrect, the parties may not be able to close on schedule. Therefore, with this recording fee change, consumers, settlement agents, and lenders should see substantially fewer real estate closing delays with respect to instrument recording fee calculation.

Market News:

2017 Home Sales Predictions. 2017 home sales are predicted to increase from this year’s forecast of 5.75 million, according to the National Association of Realtors, the Mortgage Bankers Association, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. NAR predicted existing home sales will reach 6 million in 2017, according to a recent blog. MBA predicted home sales will reach 5.75 million and Fannie and Freddie forecast home sales will come in at 6.2 million. Generation “Y”ers will keep home and condominium sales strong well into 2020 according to economists and new home construction starts will increase to about 1.5 million per year into 2024, according to predictions from Forisk Research.

Legal News and Case Law:

Condominium Loan Program. The Senate recently approved a bill by unanimous consent that includes major reforms to the Federal Housing Administration condominium loan program and the Rural Housing Service loan program. The bill had already cleared the House and now goes to the President for his signature.

The bill would streamline the FHA’s certification requirements for condo projects, allowing more commercial space in agency-approved condo buildings and relaxing current owner-occupancy requirements.

The legislation may put the dream of homeownership back in reach for more credit-worthy consumers, who for too long have been denied condominium ownership due to overly burdensome restrictions on condominium financing.


Amendment to the Michigan Housing Law.

The Michigan Housing Law (MCL § 125.401 et seq.) required registration and periodic inspection of residential rental properties in large cities. Recent amendments to this law make several changes which lessen the cost and regulatory burden on landlords and housing agencies and give local government units more flexibility to decide the best use of resources for housing inspections:

  • This law applies to any municipality of at least 10,000 people according to the most recent federal census. However, if below 100,000, the requirements only apply to private one- and two-family dwellings if the local government unit adopts the law by resolution. This change simplifies the applicability of the law from the prior version of the law.
  • The changes eliminate mandatory inspection and periodic inspection requirements. Inspection is also now only required after a lessee or tenant complains relative to apartment buildings, hotels or rooming houses.
  • Local housing authorities can choose whether to maintain a rental property registry with the property owner’s name and address.
  • Inspections of rental properties are now permitted without the owner’s permission in the event of an emergency.
  • Local government units may not collect inspection fees more than six months in advance of an inspection.
Corporate Settlement Solutions has many Michigan branch offices to serve you—Traverse City, Suttons Bay, Elk Rapids, Charlevoix, Bellaire, and Mt. Pleasant in addition to providing services throughout the eastern United States.

Maura A. Snabes, Esq., CES®, CLTP – Sr. Underwriting & Compliance Counsel

Phone: (231) 547-5220×102/802 Bridge St., Charlevoix, MI 49720

e-mail: msnabes@visitcss.com.

This Newsletter may be construed as an advertisement as defined in Public Law 108-187. A recipient of this Newsletter may decline to receive future messages by making such a request to the above email address.


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