January 07, 2014

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) has released additional resources for consumers as part of its campaign to educate the public about the new protections provided by the Bureau's mortgage rules.

These new materials include sample letters that consumers can send to their mortgage servicers. The Bureau is publishing these educational materials in anticipation of the January 10, 2014 effective dates for its mortgage rules.

"Taking out a mortgage to buy a home is one of the biggest decisions a consumer can make," said CFPB Director Richard Cordray. "We want to make sure that people are aware of their new protections so they have the knowledge to make sound decisions about their financial futures."

The CFPB's mortgage rules protect consumers by requiring that mortgage lenders evaluate whether borrowers can afford to pay back the mortgage before signing them up. The rules also establish new, strong protections for struggling homeowners, including those facing foreclosure. Under the rules, mortgage borrowers will be protected from costly surprises and runarounds by their servicers.

The Bureau is working with industry, housing counselors, and consumer groups to promote a smooth implementation of these rules.

The CFPB has also published a reference guide for housing counselors and others who interact with consumers who are struggling with paying their mortgage. The CFPB wants to ensure that housing counselors and others understand the new federal protections so that borrowers can pursue all possible options to avoid losing their home to foreclosure. The CFPB is also offering training on the rules for housing counselors.

Print copies of the mortgage materials will be available to be ordered in seven languages: Spanish, Tagalog, traditional Chinese, Haitian Creole, French, Korean, and Vietnamese. English language materials can be found at consumerfinance.gov/mortgage. The Bureau will continue to develop and produce materials to educate consumers about the new mortgage protections.