On July 7, 2020, the Bureau of Consumer Financial Protection (CFPB) issued two new frequently asked questions regarding Regulation C, Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA), reporting requirements for financial institutions. The FAQs discuss reporting of multiple data points when certain factors are relied upon in making a credit decision.
Multiple Data Points
The first question asks whether financial institutions are required to report the credit score, debt-to-income ratio (DTI), and combined loan-to-value ratio (CLTV) relied on in making a credit decision when such data is not the dispositive factor? CFPB responds that yes, credit underwriting data such as credit score, DTI, and CLTV must be reported if they were a factor relied on in making a credit decision—even if the data was not the dispositive factor.
For purposes of Regulation C, it does not matter whether the application is approved or denied; if certain data was relied on in making a credit decision, such data must be reported. For example, if the credit score was relied on in making a credit decision, the credit score must be reported. If the financial institution denied the application because the application did not satisfy one or more underwriting requirements other than the credit score, the financial institution is still required to report the credit score relied on. The same analysis applies to the reporting of CLTV and DTI.
The second question asks if, when income and property value are factors in the credit decision, though not the dispositive factor, should such data points be reported? CFPB responds that yes, when a credit decision is made, Regulation C requires reporting of the data “relied on in making the credit decision.” Hence, if these data are relied on in making a credit decision, such data must be reported.
There is no requirement in Regulation C for either of these data points to be the dispositive factor in order to be reported. Specifically, the commentary explains that when a financial institution evaluates income as part of a credit decision, it must report the gross annual income relied on in making the credit decision. For example, if an institution relies on the verified gross income of an applicant to make a credit decision, the institution is required to report the verified gross income. The comment does not state that verified gross annual income must be dispositive in the credit decision.
The commentary also provides a similar narrative for property value. Income and property value apply the relied-on standard in a similar way to credit score, DTI, and CLTV and should, therefore, be reported if relied on in making a credit decision.
The FAQs emphasize specific factors that, when relied upon in making a credit decision, must be reported. The data points are required even when the information is not the dispositive factor in a credit decision.
The FAQs can be found here.
By, Ally Bates