Seller Finance Coalition seeks to restore traditional seller-financing regulations
WASHINGTON, March 13th, 2014 – Leaders in seller financing from around the country have formed a new coalition to advocate for changes in federal financial regulation law that threaten their industry. The Seller Finance Coalition (SFC) was created to protect the seller finance industry from overregulation from Washington and to undo the unintended consequences stemming from both the Secure and Fair Enforcement for Licensing (SAFE) Act and the Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection (Dodd-Frank) Act that threaten the private lending industry. While this type of lending is a simple, private treaty loan between two parties requiring no fiduciary involvement, this vital financing mechanism has been under attack from Washington over the past 7 years.
The initial blow to the seller-finance industry came in 2008 with the SAFE Act, which set forth stringent national guidelines for states licensing mortgage originators. Although they don’t originate Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, VA, FHA or Reverse Mortgage loans, members of the seller finance industry were suddenly required to take national licensing tests. Not surprisingly, the failure rate for these individuals has been astoundingly high on the 100-question tests designed for mainstream mortgage businesses. With the denial of a license, seller-financiers were left with two unappealing options: restrict the number of transactions to under five per-year, or hire a licensed mortgage originator to process the application process – essentially eliminating the inexpensive and simplistic attraction of seller financing.
The Dodd-Frank reforms that went into effect in January of 2014 further reduce the number of transactions allowed for unlicensed seller-finance to three per year. These new restrictions erode the opportunities for seller-lenders thus eliminating a key financing option for would-be homeowners.
“These sweeping financial laws were supposedly designed to target Wall Street, big banks and large financial institutions,” said Glenn Lee, President of Texas Funding, a founding member of the SFC who led the visits on Capitol Hill last month. “Seller financing plays a critical role in the commercial and residential real estate markets, which are foundational to the U.S. economy. The new burdensome regulations threaten the entire seller finance industry and must be changed.”
Bob Repass, Managing Director of Colonial Funding Group, added, “If these regulations are not changed or eliminated, our businesses and our customers will suffer. Let us not forget the effect the law is having on those that we serve; folks that desire to purchase the properties from us by having us provide the financing on properties we own. Very often, we are the only source of financing because persons can’t qualify through traditional financing. If regulations severely limit or possibly eliminate financing by us, the owner of the property, it hurts not only us doing the business but also those who would be losing the financing we provide. After all, our customers ARE our business.”
Founders of the Seller Finance Coalition (SFC) visited Washington, D.C. in February to educate lawmakers on the unintended consequences of the sweeping financial regulatory laws that have gone into effect over the past 6 years. Bob Repass, Managing Director of Colonial Funding Group, and Scot Campbell of S.R. Campbell Properties joined Lee on SFC’s maiden voyage to Washington. The group met with Senators and Representatives, both Democrats and Republicans. The reaction was unanimously positive, with each Member of Congress expressing a desire to help the industry.
“Our purpose is to educate lawmakers about the important role that seller financing plays in our economy and how current law is threatening to run us out of business,” said Repass. “The positive response we received from the lawmakers we visited was encouraging for a first-step in the process of cutting the red tape that is forcefully constricting our industry.”
The SFC is working with the Keelen Group, a top Washington, D.C. public affairs firm, on a comprehensive outreach, education and advocacy campaign. In the coming weeks, the SFC will work to create bipartisan support for legislative solutions to the congressionally-created crisis the seller finance community faces today.
ABOUT the SFC
The Seller Finance Coalition was formed in February of 2014 to advance the interest of the Seller Finance industry. Founding members of the SFC include Glenn Lee of Texas Funding, Bob Repass and Eddie Speed of Colonial Funding Group, Scot Campbell of S.R. Campbell Properties, and Doug Smith of My House Deals. For more information about the SFC and the Seller Finance industry or to join the Coalition, visit http://www.sellerfinancecoalition.org, follow us on Twitter @SFCdotORG, and on Facebook athttp://www.facebook.com/sellerfinancecoalition.
CONTACTING the Founders’
You can speak directly with Matt Keelen at (202)-506-2061(202)-506-2061 / [email protected], Glenn Lee at (713)-932-6600(713)-932-6600 / [email protected], Bob Repass at (817)-410-4103(817)-410-4103 / [email protected], and Scot Campbell at (956)-428-6607(956)-428-6607 / [email protected], for more information about the SFC, the Seller Finance industry, and/or to join the Coalition.