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Home schooling.

YOU CAN LEARN A LOT FROM THE PAST. AND THE LEGISLATIVE HISTORY OF STATE LAWS passed to curb abusive lending is rich with lessons. We picked the Georgia Fair Lending Act as our first lesson to study.

Jack Milligan reported the story we call "Learning the Hard Way." It tells the tale of how Georgia lawmakers had an accelerated lesson in how not to get cross-ways with the secondary market. These lawmakers ended up rewriting their law after learning the national rating agencies would no longer rate securities backed by loans from their state under the terms contained in the original law. This story is relevant to all lawmakers weighing the competing goals of consumer protection with the efficient working of the modern home-lending industry. The main lesson here is you must do your homework and understand how the mortgage lending industry works or else you might draft laws that do more harm than good.

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We also look this month at the housing policy positions of the two presidential candidates as the countdown to the election draws near. President George W. Bush possibly has a slight edge on the home front with voters. A near-perfect rate environment powered a massive surge of home buying during the president's first term. A new record was set recently in terms of the nation's homeownership rate. According to the Census Bureau, the second quarter saw the rate hit 69.2 percent. But John Kerry has his own ideas about how to boost the supply of affordable housing and contain abusive lending. You can read about it in Steve Bergsman's story "Housing Politics 2004."

Another topic of interest in this issue is the battle over the new proposed rule to boost Fannie Mae's and Freddie Mac's affordable-housing goals. The comments are in and the debate has been highly charged. But the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) appears to be standing its ground on many fronts. Read the piece in this issue by Anita Willis-Boyland called "Constructing New Affordable Goals" to get all the details.

Finally, we look at the latest findings from the Cost of Servicing Study done by the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA). Our authors, Marina Walsh and Rita Ballesteros, slice and dice the findings for 2003 and tell us what they mean.

JANET REILLEY HEWITT

Editor in Chief

In October ... We look at monetary policy, the rise of the interest-only loan and the subprime lending boom, and we explore the high-profile world of pro sports marketing by lenders.
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Title Annotation:Portfolio
Author:Hewitt, Janet Reilley
Publication:Mortgage Banking
Date:Sep 1, 2004
Words:419
Previous Article:Mortgage applications indexes Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA).
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