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As if it isn't already a chore to get a mortgage, just wait until "Qualified Mortgage" becomes the law of the land.

National Association of Realtors has been actively involved in shaping the debate and structure of the Qualified Mortgage (QM) Rule issued by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).The QM rule will largely determine the underwriting standards that the majority of lenders will use to qualify prospective borrowers.

NAR achieved a significant victory in obtaining a safe harbor in the QM rule for loans underwritten to the standards required by Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac, the Federal Housing Authority, Veterans Administration and Rural Housing Service (within their respective loan limits) for up to seven years. NAR supported a safe harbor to ensure the wide availability of affordable mortgage credit for qualified borrowers.

Borrowers will still be able to get a private loan as long as the loan does not have risky features and the borrower’s total debt to income (DTI) isn’t over 43%. This means that a borrower’s total debt expense (including total mortgage payment) does not exceed 43% of their gross income (before taxes are withheld). These loans will still receive the QM safe harbor protections.

Highlighted below are some of the issues contained in the QM rule that were of particular concern to NAR. There are many more provisions that may affect the cost or access to credit. NAR will continue to work with CPFB, Congress, and industry partners to address issues that are critical to consumers, our industry, and the real estate market overall.

The rule is scheduled to be effective January 10, 2014.

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