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Texas Department of Savings and Mortgage Lending

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ):
Compliance Questions

I am a residential mortgage loan originator and I am transferring a file to another originator who can access loan products I cannot access. Can I get a referral fee? Referral Fees are generally prohibited by Section 8 of RESPA. People who lawfully provide actual "settlement services" may be paid for the services they provide. Take a look at HUD Policy Statement 99-1.

I own a mortgage company and a real estate agent wants to come and work for me as a residential mortgage loan originator. Can they be a residential mortgage loan originator and a real estate agent on the same transaction? Texas law does not preclude an individual from serving as loan originator and a real estate agent on the same transaction. However, the Mortgage Broker License Act requires that the individual provide a written disclosure to the client, in advance and obtain the client's written consent. A form for making this disclosure can be obtained here.

What do I need to do to be "in compliance" when I advertise? There are a number of very specific requirements in the Mortgage Broker License Act Rules (7 TAC Chapter 80) and the Mortgage Banker Registration and Residential Mortgage Loan Originator License Act Rules (7 TAC Chapter 81). You must disclose your name, your license number/unique identifier, and the name of your company sponsor.  The advertisement must also contain the physical street address in Texas of the residential mortgage loan originator or the company sponsor.  This information must coincide with the information in the TDSML licensing database.

You must comply with all other applicable consumer disclosure laws, including the Truth in Lending Act and Regulations. One of the most common violations is the failure to disclose APRs. If you are disclosing a rate of finance charge, you must show it as an annual percentage rate or APR calculated in accordance with Regulation Z.

False, misleading, or deceptive advertisements are prohibited. You may advertise only products that are actually available and if they are subject to any special or unusual conditions or requirements, those conditions and requirements must be disclosed.

Please make sure you review and understand all advertising regulations prior to placing an advertisement.

Am I required to maintain a hard copy of application files or may I scan these files into a computerized digital format and maintain this information on compact discs or other devices? The Mortgage Broker License Act Rules (7 TAC Chapter 80) and the Mortgage Banker Registration and Residential Mortgage Loan Originator License Act Rules (7 TAC Chapter 81) contain a complete listing of the books and records each licensee is required to maintain for three years (or such longer period(s) as may be required by applicable state and/or federal laws and regulations).  The particular format of records to be maintained is not specified; nonetheless, the records must be complete, current, legible, readily accessible, and in a format readily able to sort. Therefore, assuming the information contained within the computerized digital format satisfies the above-referenced section and all applicable requirements under state or federal law, the Department hereby confirms that the required maintenance of books and records may be performed i by means of scanning the information into a computerized digital format and maintaining on compact discs or other devices.

 



 

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