OK, what ever happened to the "good old days" of a loan guarantee or commitment? It used to be you went to a lender, provided all (and I mean ALL) your documentation (tax returns, bank statements, pay stubs, references, etc.). The lender investigated your background, credit, verified your bank accounts / employment, and even called your references to ensure they where real. Then the lender gave you a loan commitment up to a given purchase price with the requirement of a given down payment. You knew EXACTLY what was required and what your loan terms were from the gun.
Since the internet, buyers started to "SHOP" loans, go to 5, 10, 20 different brokers... Due to this fact the brokers had to change the way they did business and low ball the loans to hook ya in. Then things would change, hence the new GFE.
But lenders brought this on themselves to by changing the loan rules on the fly. How many times have your clients been just days or hours from loan docs and SURPRISE, you have some need for additional paperwork or POOF, the loan you had was just flat gone and the only way to close the loan was to agree to a different package all together and of course it cost the buyer more.
I say that HUD has the right idea, but the wrong rules. We need to go back to a simple loan commitment. Do all the work up front. The buyer should come to a lender, supply ALL documentations, the lender should do all the back end work, and then issue a commitment to loan that they have to stick to for say 90 days regardless of any changes. Then the buyer can find the home, do the contract, put down the money, do the inspections, sign the docs, and CLOSE THE LOAN...
But it will take the basic rules to change from in favor of the lender to the consumer. But alas, this will not happen because the lenders have all the power. We lose our homes due to decreased income and the COE's buy a new $10,000,000 house because the government spent billions to ensure they made a profit and got their bonuses.
Just my 2 cents, and that is just about all I have to my name.