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If you're refinancing your mortgage or applying for a home equity installment loan, you should know about the Home Ownership and Equity Protection Act of 1994, especially if you have bad credit and are considering a high-rate, high-fee loan.

This law addresses certain deceptive and unfair practices in home equity lending. It amends the Truth in Lending Act (TILA) and establishes requirements for certain loans with high rates and/or high fees. The rules for these loans are contained in Section 32 of Regulation Z, which implements the TILA, so the loans also are called "Section 32 Mortgages."

Here's what loans are covered, the law's disclosure requirements, prohibited features, and actions you can take against a lender who is violating the law.

A loan is covered by the law if it meets the following tests:

The annual percentage rate (APR) exceeds by more than 10 percentage points the rates on Treasury securities of comparable maturity; or

the total fees and points payable by the consumer at or before closing exceed the larger of $480 or 8 percent of the total loan amount. (The $480 figure is for 2002. This amount is adjusted annually by the Federal Reserve Board, based on changes in the Consumer Price Index.)

The rules primarily affect home equity loan refinancing and home equity installment loans that also meet the definition of a high-rate or high-fee loan. The rules do not cover loans to purchase or initially construct your home, reverse mortgages or home equity lines of credit (similar to revolving credit accounts).

If your mortgage meets the above tests, you must receive several disclosures at least three business days before the loan is finalized:

The lender must give you a written notice stating that the loan need not be completed, even though you've signed the loan application and received the required disclosures. You have three business days to decide whether to sign the loan agreement after you receive the special Section 32 disclosures.

The notice must warn you that, because the lender will have a mortgage on your home, you could lose the residence and any money put into it, if you fail to make payments.

The lender must disclose the APR and the regular payment amount (including any balloon payment where the law permits balloon payments, discussed below) for high-rate, high-fee loans. For variable rate loans, the lender must disclose that the rate and monthly payment may increase and state the amount of the maximum monthly payment.

These disclosures are in addition to the other TILA disclosures that you must receive no later than the closing of the loan.

The following features are banned from high-rate, high-fee loans:

All balloon payments -- where the regular payments do not fully pay off the principal balance and a lump sum payment of more than twice the amount of the regular payments is required -- for loans with less than five-year terms. There is an exception for bridge loans of less than one year used by consumers to buy or build a home: In that situation, balloon payments are not prohibited.

Negative amortization, which involves smaller monthly payments that do not fully pay off the loan and that cause an increase in your total principal debt.

Default interest rates higher than pre-default rates.

Rebates of interest upon default calculated by any method less favorable than the actuarial method.

A repayment schedule that consolidates more than two periodic payments that are to be paid in advance from the proceeds of the loan.

Most prepayment penalties, including refunds of unearned interest calculated by any method less favorable than the actuarial method. The exception is if:

the lender verifies that your total monthly debt (including the mortgage) is 50 percent or less of your monthly gross income; you get the money to prepay the loan from a source other than the lender or an affiliate lender; and the lender exercises the penalty clause during the first five years following execution of the mortgage.

Creditors also are prohibited from engaging in a pattern or practice of lending based on the collateral value of your property without regard to your ability to repay the loan. In addition, proceeds for home improvement loans must be disbursed either directly to you, jointly to you and the home improvement contractor or, in some instances, to the escrow agent.

You may have the right to sue a lender for violations of these new requirements. In a successful suit, you may be able to recover statutory and actual damages, court costs, and attorney's fees. In addition, a violation of the high-rate, high-fee requirements of the TILA may enable you to rescind (or cancel) the loan for up to three years.

However, you may always seek help from realtor agents in your area - someone you can trust to help you more in determining your plans especially when it includes mortgage refinancing.

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Q: What should you know about bad credit mortgage refinancing?
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What should I know about bankruptcy and mortgage refinance?

You can refinance your mortgage, even after a bankruptcy. Refinancing can even help restore your good credit in about two years! Sit down with your lender and talk about a refinancing plan.


How does one start the process of refinancing their loan on their home mortgage?

Before refinancing your home, one should consider if refinancing is the right option for them. Refinancing is intended mainly to lower one's interest rate. However, there are some things to be considered when doing this. Refinancing pays off the current loan and creates a new loan at a lower interest rate. Before doing this, the homeowner should know if their current mortgage has a prepayment penalty clause. This means that if they pay the current mortgage early they will have to pay a fine or penalty. This might make refinancing not worth it.


Where can one find information on refinancing a commercial mortgage?

The best place to find more information on refinancing a commercial mortgage is Commercials mortgage buyer's guide at yahoo. This site tells you step by step what you need to know to refinance a commercial mortgage.


Father has credit card debt Mother and Father own the house No Mortgage Can credit card compaines come after house should he die?

You should name your country, In England, no, anywhere else, I dont know.


What are the factors involved in the judge approving a mortgage refinancing after a bankruptcy?

All you have to do is submit a request to refinance to the trustee. The lawyer stands nothing to gain. They would rather you refinance because they know they will get their money.

Related questions

What should I know about bankruptcy and mortgage refinance?

You can refinance your mortgage, even after a bankruptcy. Refinancing can even help restore your good credit in about two years! Sit down with your lender and talk about a refinancing plan.


How does one start the process of refinancing their loan on their home mortgage?

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Where can one find information on refinancing a commercial mortgage?

The best place to find more information on refinancing a commercial mortgage is Commercials mortgage buyer's guide at yahoo. This site tells you step by step what you need to know to refinance a commercial mortgage.


What to do if the person that wants to get a mortgage for your propertybut cannot obtain one until credit it corrected. How can you still sell to them?

You can take back a mortgage yourself. However, remember that you already know the potential buyer has poor credit and may not pay the mortgage payments. You should obtain legal advice from an attorney.You can take back a mortgage yourself. However, remember that you already know the potential buyer has poor credit and may not pay the mortgage payments. You should obtain legal advice from an attorney.You can take back a mortgage yourself. However, remember that you already know the potential buyer has poor credit and may not pay the mortgage payments. You should obtain legal advice from an attorney.You can take back a mortgage yourself. However, remember that you already know the potential buyer has poor credit and may not pay the mortgage payments. You should obtain legal advice from an attorney.


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Computing Your Savings With an FHA Refinance Calculator?

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What are the factors involved in the judge approving a mortgage refinancing after a bankruptcy?

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Refinancing 101?

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