Servicing Guide

Published June 13, 2018

A2-4-01: Quality Control Reviews (08/17/2016)

Fannie Mae may review mortgage loans it has purchased or securitized (including those with early payment defaults, those that have been foreclosed, as well as any other mortgage loan) to ensure that its underwriting, eligibility, and servicing requirements have been met.

When Fannie Mae’s quality assurance risk assessment identifies a mortgage loan as having a higher degree of risk, Fannie Mae may perform a post-foreclosure full file QC review to evaluate the seller/servicer’s initial underwriting of the mortgage loan and, if applicable, the actions the seller/servicer took in servicing the mortgage loan. In such cases, Fannie Mae will notify the seller/servicer about the type of review Fannie Mae will perform and the scope of the review.

This topic contains the following:

Notification of a Quality Control Review

The seller/servicer is notified which mortgage loans Fannie Mae has selected for review via written or electronic notification. Electronic notification will be delivered via QAS if the seller/servicer has signed up for it.

Timely Delivery of Individual Mortgage Loan Files

The seller/servicer must send the requested documentation for an underwriting or servicing review so that Fannie Mae receives the review file within 30 days after Fannie Mae notifies the seller/servicer that it has selected a mortgage loan for review. Fannie Mae, in its sole discretion, may request the documentation in a shorter or longer period of time based upon circumstances at the time.

Fannie Mae will make every effort to work with the seller/servicer when extenuating circumstances prevent it from delivering documentation in a timely manner. However, if a seller/servicer delays in providing the requested information, Fannie Mae, in its sole discretion, reserves the right to require indemnification, repurchase (depending on the circumstances of the individual case) of these mortgage loans, or other alternatives. When a seller/servicer has a pattern of extensive delays or unresponsiveness, Fannie Mae may consider this a breach of contract and consider other actions against the seller/servicer, up to and including termination.

Document Submission Requirements

The seller and servicer must maintain a complete individual mortgage loan file and be able to produce copies of the complete individual mortgage loan file upon Fannie Mae’s request. The servicing review file must include supporting documents for all requests for expense reimbursement it has submitted or intends to submit to Fannie Mae (for example, vendor invoices and third-party invoices from the vendor rendering services), in addition to other servicing and liquidation information such as

  • property inspection reports,

  • copies of delinquency repayment plans,

  • copies of disclosures of ARM loan interest rate and payment changes,

  • documents related to insurance loss settlements, and

  • foreclosure records, as stated in the Servicing Guide.

In all instances, the servicer must document its compliance with all Fannie Mae policies and procedures, including, but not limited to, timelines that are required by the Servicing Guide. The servicer must maintain in the individual mortgage loan file all documents and system records that preserve Fannie Mae’s ownership interest in the individual mortgage loan.

The seller/servicer must package the requested documentation requested by Fannie Mae. When Fannie Mae requests both a mortgage loan origination and a mortgage loan servicing file, the seller/servicer may package the material as a single file (with the origination and servicing documentation separated and clearly labeled within the file) or as two separate files that are packaged together (with one file identified as the “origination” file and the other identified as the “servicing” file).

The complete mortgage loan file must include clear copies of any required paper documents, not the originals. Paper documents must be sent in a manila folder, with the credit and property documents on the right side and the legal documents on the left side.

If the seller/servicer keeps its files electronically, Fannie Mae must be able to reproduce the documents required in a manner in terms of cost and time frames acceptable to Fannie Mae.

If the seller/servicer wishes to submit files in a form other than paper, it must contact the Fannie Mae’s LQC File Receipt and Assignment team (see F-4-03, List of Contacts) to ensure that the requested form is compatible with the LQC’s systems and processes. The requested files must be sent to Fannie Mae’s LQC File Receipt and Assignment team (see F-4-03, List of Contacts).

Fannie Mae’s Quality Control Review

Fannie Mae has QC policies and procedures in place for its review of performing and non-performing mortgage loans. Fannie Mae uses a statistically valid approach in selecting a random sample of new mortgage loan deliveries for review. The random sample is augmented with targeted, discretionary sampling, which aids in the measurement of the overall quality of mortgage loan deliveries. The QC process evaluates individual mortgage loan files on a comprehensive basis with the primary focus of confirming that mortgage loans meet Fannie Mae’s underwriting and eligibility requirements. Fannie Mae will continue to review any servicing files requested with the primary focus of confirming that the mortgage loan has been serviced in accordance with the Lender Contract.

The QC process also provides the seller/servicer with data and feedback about the quality of its mortgage loan origination process. The goal is to engage the seller/servicer in frequent, meaningful exchanges of information about trends in the quality of delivered mortgage loans and to inform the seller/servicer about significant underwriting deficiencies identified through the QC review process. Together, Fannie Mae and its sellers/servicers should share a commitment to improving the quality of mortgage loan originations. Fannie Mae requires that the seller/servicer implement and enforce strong underwriting processes and, if necessary, will work with the seller/servicer to develop action plans to improve origination quality.

Fannie Mae’s QC policies are administered by its LQC. The selection process may change at any time to address concerns.

Requirements Specific for Servicing Quality Control Reviews

Fannie Mae will utilize delinquent mortgage loan status code data and other information collected from the servicer during other interactions to identify delays in the default management process. Fannie Mae may elect to perform a servicing review to further evaluate the actions the servicer took in servicing those mortgage loans.

Fannie Mae will notify the servicer of the intention to perform a desk review or an on-site review. The servicer must submit the requested documentation or make it available for an on-site review in the time frame specified in the notification. If the servicer fails to do so, Fannie Mae may exercise available remedies, including compensatory fees, without first reviewing the individual mortgage loan file. The list of documents that must be included in any servicing review file Fannie Mae request are outlined in Servicing Review File Requirements.

Fannie Mae will communicate any performance deficiencies noted to the servicer. Unless Fannie Mae elects to immediately terminate the servicer’s right to service the mortgage loans, the servicer will be given an opportunity to explain any mitigating circumstances or factors that justify the servicing actions it took or did not take within the time frame specified by Fannie Mae in its communication of the performance deficiencies.

Fannie Mae’s evaluation of the actions the servicer took in servicing the mortgage loan will focus primarily on determining whether the servicer took all of the appropriate steps to cure the delinquency or avoid foreclosure (through Fannie Mae’s various relief provisions or foreclosure prevention alternatives) and, if a foreclosure could not be avoided, on confirming that the servicer completed the legal actions within Fannie Mae’s required time frames.

For the most part, Fannie Mae will rely on various reports that are produced by its automated delinquency and foreclosure prevention management systems to evaluate the servicer’s performance. However, when Fannie Mae’s analysis of these reports indicates that there is a possibility that the servicer’s delinquency management performance is poor or if Fannie Mae believes certain servicing files should be reviewed for other reasons, Fannie Mae may require the servicer to submit a servicing review file for a mortgage loan to Fannie Mae’s SF CPM division (see F-4-03, List of Contacts).

If Fannie Mae identifies deficiencies in its evaluation of the servicing review file, it will communicate them to the servicer. The servicer, in most instances, will be given an opportunity to explain any mitigating circumstances or factors that justify the servicing actions it took (or did not take).

When the servicer’s review identifies significant deficiencies, it may offer to purchase the property from Fannie Mae when it submits the complete individual mortgage loan file (rather than waiting for the results of Fannie Mae’s review). Fannie Mae will entertain such offers–as long as they will make Fannie Mae whole and are permitted by the Trust Agreement, if applicable–since Fannie Mae would no longer have to be concerned about the property disposition process.

When Fannie Mae has received the origination and/or servicing review file, it will begin the process of reviewing the file(s) to determine whether the mortgage loan met Fannie Mae’s origination, eligibility and/or servicing standards. If Fannie Mae concludes that a repurchase demand should be issued on a mortgage loan pursuant to the origination defect remedies framework, Fannie Mae generally will issue a request for repurchase (calling for the servicer to take title to the property and pay Fannie Mae for its full investment in it). Fannie Mae may, on occasion, give the servicer the option of having Fannie Mae dispose of the property (and agreeing to indemnify Fannie Mae for any loss Fannie Mae incurs in connection with the sale), or require the lender to fully reimburse Fannie Mae for its loss through a demand for a make whole payment in the event that Fannie Mae sells the property or accepts a purchase offer prior to notifying the servicer that the mortgage loan did not meet Fannie Mae’s eligibility or underwriting requirements.

In the event the servicing defect identified by Fannie Mae also turns out to be a breach of any provision of any MI policy issued with respect to a mortgage loan, the seller/servicer is not released from any breach of the Lender Contract that may result if the MI company insuring the loan rescinds, cancels, denies, or curtails the MI benefit due to the same or similar acts or omissions that make up the defect.

Fannie Mae Quality Control Report

Fannie Mae provides the seller/servicer with ongoing feedback about their overall QC performance. The feedback identifies defect types, reporting on frequent or common defects, and describes quality trend analyses and significant underwriting deficiencies identified through the QC review process. This information is provided through a variety of methods that range from regular electronic transmissions to more formal periodic discussions.

When Fannie Mae identifies a defective mortgage loan, it may in its sole discretion, impose a condition to retaining the mortgage loan, such as requiring the seller/servicer to agree to an alternative remedy to repurchase. In some cases, as permitted by the Lender Contract, Fannie Mae will issue a repurchase or make whole payment request to the seller/servicer.

The Servicing Guide contains timelines by which the seller/servicer must pay Fannie Mae the funds that are due in connection with a demand for a servicing remedy in A1-3-02, Fannie Mae-Initiated Repurchases, Indemnifications, Make Whole Payment Requests and Deferred Payment Obligations. If the seller/servicer delays in this or has a pattern of unresponsiveness, Fannie Mae may consider this an independent breach of contract and consider other actions against the seller/servicer, up to and including termination.

Certain servicing repurchase alternatives may be available only to certain seller/servicers that are in good standing with Fannie Mae. See Servicer Responses to a Demand in A1-3-02, Fannie Mae-Initiated Repurchases, Indemnifications, Make Whole Payment Requests and Deferred Payment Obligations for more information.

Appeal of Fannie Mae QC Review Decisions

Fannie Mae maintains processes for the seller/servicer to appeal a demand for a servicing remedy, including an IDR process, in certain instances. See the Selling Guide for more information on the origination defect remedies framework appeals process and Servicer Responses to a Demand in A1-3-02, Fannie Mae-Initiated Repurchases, Indemnifications, Make Whole Payment Requests and Deferred Payment Obligations for more information on the servicing defect remedies framework appeal and escalation processes. A demand for a repurchase servicing remedy or reimbursement may be rescinded or withdrawn because the seller/servicer provides documentation within the time period specified by Fannie Mae (when Fannie Mae determines that a breach of the Lender Contract may be corrected).

Servicing Review File Requirements

The following table provides a list of the documentation that must be included in the servicing review file.

The servicer must include in the servicing review file...

The collection history for the default that led to the foreclosure or mortgage release (including the reason for the default, delinquency notices sent, and copies of borrower’s previous payment histories).

A summary of all attempts to develop a workout plan or arrange a workout option, including evidence of any communication with Fannie Mae.

A bankruptcy tracking log, or a separate report indicating the dates of any bankruptcy filings and the dates that any lifting of a bankruptcy stay was attempted and attained.

The foreclosure tracking log, or a separate report indicating the date that the case was referred to the foreclosure attorney and the date of the foreclosure sale, as well as summarizing any communications with Fannie Mae about delays in the foreclosure process (including delays resulting from the presence of hazardous waste, natural disasters, massive layoffs, etc.) or departures from standard foreclosure procedures (such as using judicial foreclosure in a power of sale state).

Any other type of information that is requested, given the type of review.

The outside of the servicing review file must clearly identify the case, as follows:

  • servicing file for acquired property;

  • mortgage remittance type (A/A, S/A, or S/S);

  • servicing option (special or shared risk);

  • Fannie Mae mortgage loan number;

  • servicer mortgage loan number;

  • borrower’s name; and

  • property address.

Underwriting or Servicing Reviews of Acquired Properties

When Fannie Mae receives an offer to purchase an acquired property that is also subject to an underwriting or servicing review, Fannie Mae may accept the purchase offer without first notifying the servicer, whether or not a final decision has been reached with respect to the review. If, after completion of the review, Fannie Mae determines that the mortgage loan did not meet its eligibility or underwriting requirements and Fannie Mae has incurred a loss by selling the property, the seller/servicer will be required to fully reimburse Fannie Mae for its loss.

Related Announcements

The following table provides references to Announcements that are related to this topic.

Announcements Issue Date
Announcement SVC–2016–07 August 17, 2016
Announcement SVC–2015–15 December 16, 2015