Donald Trump expressed support for loosening the new post-crisis rules on mortgages in a speech to a group of home builders Thursday.
In an appearance at a meeting of the National Association of Home Builders in Florida, the Republican presidential nominee said the new rules have made it too difficult for families to get home loans.
"It's impossible for your people to go get mortgages," Trump said. "It's so hard to get mortgages nowadays."
"It's so hard for people to get mortgages today unless you have a lot of money in the bank…" he added. "You can't borrow."
Trump's comments echoed the complaints of the housing industry, which has chafed at the imposition of new rules intended to prevent the resurgence of poorly underwritten loans such as the ones that became prevalent in the lead-up to the subprime crisis.
Those rules include the Qualified Mortgage rule set by the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, which requires loans to meet certain standards, as well as requirements that lenders document borrowers' ability to repay loans.
Bankers and the real estate industry have expressed concerns that the requirements are too onerous and are preventing some creditworthy borrowers from getting home loans. They have noted that credit scores have risen and delinquency rates have fallen, while house sales remain short of their pre-bubble levels.
While Trump steered clear of specific policy details during his speech Thursday, he did say that the homeownership rate, which fell to the lowest mark on record in the second quarter, is too low.
Trump pulled out a chart of the homeownership rate to show the builders the decline, calling it a "terrible picture." Homeownership, he told the audience, is the American Dream.
However, the biggest applause lines Trump delivered Thursday didn't relate to housing regulations, which he called "horrible" and predicted his opponent Hillary Clinton would make worse. Instead, the crowd loudly applauded his call to lower the corporate tax rate to 15 percent and eliminate the estate tax.