The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau yesterday released a list of rural and underserved counties to use in 2014 in conjunction with the ability-to-repay, escrow and HOEPA rules.
Because some counties were re-classified as rural or non-rural between the 2013 and 2014 lists, some small creditors may become ineligible for the rural and underserved area exemptions. However, the CFPB said that it expects to address this by extending through January 10, 2016, the small-lender exemption from high-cost balloon mortgages restrictions -- as well as the ability to originate balloon Qualified Mortgages -- for banks that do not operate predominantly in rural or underserved areas.
The CFPB also said that it will extend the rural or underserved exemption from the escrow rule to creditors that operated predominantly in a rural or underserved county in any of the three years previous. Creditors may rely on the final list as a safe harbor to determine whether a county is rural or underserved for loans made in 2014, the CFPB said.
View the list.