Fannie Mae spotlighted the availability of its Servicing Management Default UnderwriterTM (SMDUTM) today while alerting servicers that use of the loss mitigation tool which is now voluntary, will probably become mandatory soon.  Fannie Mae said SMDU, a counterpart to its Desktop Underwriter® for mortgage originations, is already being used by a number of its technology providers and servicing partners and several large servicers are working toward its adoption this year.

SMDU allows users to feed in the financial data of distressed homeowners; it then evaluates that data and determines what options are available to them to prevent foreclosure.  Fannie Mae said servicers who adopt SMDU experience faster speed to implementation of Fannie Mae policy changes.   Servicers can make real-time calls to Fannie Mae's business rules as they collect information from homeowners. SMDU informs the servicer when the homeowner is eligible for streamlined processing for any loss mitigation option, which can eliminate weeks from the process.  .Servicers are guided through the tool with scripts to promote consistency and improve customer service, elements that translate to cost savings and improved service to homeowners.  The program has been under development for three years.

"SMDU addresses several challenges the servicing industry has faced in recent years by eliminating a manual and resource-intensive process for servicers while improving accuracy and consistency," said Leslie Peeler, Senior Vice President of Fannie Mae's National Servicing Organization.  Peeler said that so far use of the tool has been voluntary but servicers should anticipate that adoption will be required at some point in the near future. SMDU serves the interests of homeowners, servicers and taxpayers. The bottom line is that we want servicers to prevent as many foreclosures as possible and provide excellent service."