DMI Blog

Amy Traub

NY’s Mortgage Law Hits Home

Yesterday New York Governor David Paterson signed a new law to address the state’s home mortgage crisis. The law will provide immediate help to New Yorkers currently at risk of losing their homes while also reforming the lending system to prevent the predatory practices that fueled the crisis in the first place.

As DMI Fellow Mark Winston Griffith noted "The bill includes an update and expansion of the state's anti-predatory lending law; requires lenders to verify a borrower's ability to pay; requires brokers to act with good faith and fair dealing in the borrower's interest; requires lenders to send an early notice to distressed homeowners with contact information for local nonprofit housing counseling agencies; and encourages lenders to work out settlements with homeowners in distress early in the foreclosure process." See this legislative summary for more details

The new law is among the strongest foreclosure prevention measures in the country. The Drum Major Institute is proud to have contributed to the policy debate around this critical issue.

In October, DMI’s Marketplace of Ideas series brought Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson to New York to discuss the successful predatory lending and mortgage prevention legislation she spearheaded in her state. Check out the podcast, video or a transcript of that conversation or read the liveblog. As part of that discussion, United States Senator Charles Schumer addressed the federal role in mitigating the growing home mortgage crisis, while New York State Banking Superintendent Richard Neiman, Councilman James Sanders, and advocate Sarah Ludwig of the Neighborhood Economic Development Advocacy Project addressed what could be done locally. The conclusion? New York could and should enact Minnesota-style mortgage lending reforms and even surpass them.

As part of the New Yorkers for Responsible Lending coalition, DMI joined many other advocates in promoting mortgage reform.

DMI made the case for this crucial legislation in news outlets through the state. We described the terrible toll predatory lending takes on New Yorkers in the pages of the Albany Times-Union.
In New York City's Daily News, we explained that "the main problem here isn't borrowers who live beyond their means - it's brokers and lenders gone wild who make irresponsible loans, and lax government regulators who look the other way." And we told readers of the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle that "If lawmakers give New Yorkers a fighting chance to keep their homes, they will earn the right to return to their own homes for the summer."

Of course, readers of DMIBlog are also familiar with Economic Justice Fellow Mark Winston Griffith’s tenacious blog coverage of mortgage legislation on both the state and federal levels. When he returns from a well-deserved vacation, Mark will undoubtedly have more to say about the law.

Amy Traub: Author Bio | Other Posts
Posted at 12:58 PM, Aug 06, 2008 in Banking | Drum Major Institute | Economic Opportunity | Economy | Financial Justice | Housing | Mortgage Crisis | New York | Progressive Agenda
Permalink | Email to Friend