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Residential Department: Q&A: Burton Embry, president, Mortgage Compliance Professionals Association of America: November 2016


Q&A: Burton Embry, president, Mortgage Compliance Professionals Association of America

New association for compliance professionals hits the ground running

Earlier this year, Ben Slayton, the executive vice president and compliance officer for Venta Financial Group Inc., began talking with Burton Embry about creating a new professional association for the mortgage-compliance industry. Slayton went forward with the idea this past summer and appointed Embry as president of the Mortgage Compliance Professionals Association of America (MCPAOA).

A few months later, on Sept. 9, the MCPAOA held its inaugural meeting, which was attended by more than 150 of the 650-plus members that had already joined the fledgling association. In addition, Slayton and Embry appointed a high-powered board of directors, including compliance executives from Guild Mortgage Co., First Choice Loan Services, Prime Source Mortgage and Ellie Mae. Scotsman Guide talked with Embry about the MCPAOA and also asked him to weigh in on current compliance issues.

Why did the MCPAOA come about?

Ben [Slayton] and I were getting feedback from compliance officers at some of the midsize and smaller IMBs [independent mortgage banks]. They would go to the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) regulatory compliance conference or the MBA legal-issues conference and get all this great information from attorneys on the panels. But when they got back to their shops, and they didn’t have access to the attorneys anymore, they struggled with implementing all this great information. So we decided to put an association together to share information and best practices among these IMB compliance officers.

What are your long-term plans for the association?

Our long-term plans are really to be a resource for our members. We’re never going to be the MBA. We are not competing with the MBA. They are a great organization. They just do so much. We have a little bit different focus and plan than what the MBA does.

This association is not about Ben Slayton or Burton Embry or any of the great board members we have or any of that. It’s really an association — and we’ve said this before — it’s by compliance officers, for compliance officers. It is to get them to ask questions and share information among their peers. Share problems and solutions.

As a compliance professional, what advice would you give to new mortgage originators?

The first thing I would tell them is: “Get plenty of training. Listen to what your compliance people tell you. Read as much as you can.” … One mistake can really be fatal to a loan, and if there is anything compliance officers hate, it is for a loan originator to get a consumer to loan closing and then find out that a fatal error has been made that could have been prevented had the loan originator just read the policy that went out weeks before or taken that one-hour webinar.

What is your take on the implementation of the TRID consumer-disclosure rules?

The litany of items on the MBA list of things to address in their comment letter [to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, or CFPB] is just mind-boggling. The list is just really long of things they want to talk about with the CFPB. … I don’t think TRID issues are going to go away for the next five, six, seven years. The regulation is extremely expansive and it missed on a lot of fronts. I feel sure we will continue to see clarifications and corrections for it over the next few years.

Will the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) changes be easier?

A lot of people think the HMDA changes are going to be more difficult than the TRID changes. I’m not sure I’m in that camp. But, we’re implementing a brand new loan application at the same time that we’re going to be implementing these new HMDA changes, which is going to be very interesting. On top of that, we will be dealing with new servicing regulations and whatever comes from the CFPB on the current proposed TRID rules. It is a lot to digest

Many lenders use third-party loan-origination software (LOS) … and a lot of our implementation challenges are going to come down to how good the LOS changes are. At the end of the day, lenders have to implement a new 1003 [mortgage-application form], policy and procedure changes and come up with new training plans. There’s no doubt about it. It is going to be a very busy couple of years for compliance professionals.

Burton Embry is executive vice president and chief compliance officer for Primary Residential Mortgage. He has spent more than 30 years in the financial and mortgage banking industry and more than 35 years focusing on mortgage compliance and quality assurance. Embry is a nationally recognized compliance leader and an active member of the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Legal Issues and Regulatory Compliance Committee and is the co-chair of the California Mortgage Bankers Mortgage Quality and Compliance Committee. For more information about the Mortgage Compliance Professionals Association of America, or to become a member, visit


Will McDermott is managing editor for Ask a Lender. Reach him at or (800) 297-6061.

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