Fannie Mae Announces Changes in Desktop Underwriter to Assist with Credit Freezes
Many consumers have elected to place a credit freeze on their credit reports. As we at SIR and others have reported, consumers have the option to freeze their credit files from each of the three national credit repositories. This has been widely recommended as a safeguard measure since Equifax announced that a breach of its database impacting millions of US Consumers took place earlier this year.
While putting a freeze to one’s credit report is wise choice to help protect against fraud, it may present challenges when the consumer attempts to obtain legitimate financing and has not removed the freeze for credit evaluation. Fannie Mae has announced an upcoming change to its automated underwriting engine for the weekend of November 18, 2017. During this time the Desktop Underwriter Versions 10.0 and 10.1 will be updated to underwrite loan casefiles when a borrower has placed a freeze on their credit report with just one of the three credit repositories. With this update, no data from that repository containing the freeze will be used in the loan underwriting and Fannie Mae cautions the lender will continue to be responsible for preventing fraud, verifying borrower identity and investigating any liabilities or derogatory credit disclosed by the borrower but not reflected on the credit report. If credit is frozen from two or more of the credit repositories, Fannie Mae will not underwrite the casefile through Desktop Underwriter.
Unfreezing a Credit File
To further assist borrowers involved in legitimate financing applications we are providing instructions to help with unfreezing a credit file for each of the three national repositories. Instructions are as follows:
TransUnion or 800.916.8800 option 4
Additionally Strategic Information Resources highly recommends the use of our Application Data Validation Reports to assist lenders in identity verification in the loan underwriting process. If you as a lender are not currently purchasing a fraud detection report please contact us at any time to review our solution for borrower validation.