Message from Division of Consumer Services Director Cindy Fazio

Consumer Services Director Cindy Fazio.

Happy New Year, Groundhog Day, and February snow storm! I hope your health, and that of your business, remains good. Now that we are over the initial shock of the pandemic and the bombardment of bad news in 2020, I hope you feel like I do, that recovery is in reach. But it will take time, and I think there will be some bumps in the road.

Fortunately, the housing market remains strong, and according to the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), Washington remains very near the bottom on a list of states with seriously delinquent mortgages. However, there is an unknown associated with that. How will homeowners respond when forbearances end and mortgage payments are due?

The same holds true for federal student loans. Payments remain currently suspended, without interest, for most federal student loan borrowers through September 2021. How will these payment delays affect the housing market? And let’s not forget the commercial mortgage market. So how do we go forward with all these unknowns? I will use some material from project planning about assumptions:

Most assumptions can be classified into three types:

  1. Assumptions that can become validated.
  2. Assumptions that can become validated at some point in the future but not now.
  3. Assumptions that we cannot control.

Now I am going to jump to the end - Don’t become a victim of assumptions—be aware of them, rate them, and resolve the assumptions you can while managing the rest as risks. It will shift your work out of daily fire-fighting to a more proactive, disciplined process. Things are going to continue to change this year. Some of the changes we can control, some of them we cannot.

I wish you the very best this year.