States have a new tool to regulate mortgage companies and access their track records, including information on companies punished in other states for fraud or predatory lending.
The Nationwide Mortgage Licensing System is an online database that will make it easier for states to monitor mortgage companies. If a firm operating in multiple states is sanctioned in one of them, other states will know immediately. And if that firm applies to open in new states, officials will know about the infractions and could deny the company a license.
“The ability to hide a blemish is gone,” said Steven Antonakes, Massachusetts' state banking commissioner. In the last two years Massachusetts has issued more than 215 enforcement actions against lenders and brokers.
So far, seven states are participating in the registry, which kicked off Jan. 2: Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Nebraska, New York and Rhode Island. Another eight are slated to join by July, and more than 35 states are expected to participate by the end of 2009. By then, the public also will be able to use the portal to see a company's state record.
Read the full report States Unveil Mortgage Licensing System on Stateline.org's Web site.