Let’s start the week with a gaggle of questions. Do you feel old knowing that Taylor Swift is older than the four Beatles were when they broke up? Have you heard of “suspicious foreign players” passing themselves off as underwriters in applying for jobs? Have you begun talking about “restart economics”? If you’re reading this, your computer’s server probably hasn’t been hacked… Given the Chinese onslaught, is it only a matter of time? (The Alert may be found here.) Are you helping borrowers impacted by the pandemic? (The CFPB hopes so.) Are fintech companies/lenders as good at supporting the local community as independent mortgage bankers and brokers are? Are wholesalers concerned with RESPA? Does anyone know if we can take showers yet or should we just keep washing our hands? audio version of today’s commentary featuring an interview with Jina Choi, the Chief Product Specialist for Candor, the dynamic, adaptive underwriting engine: A Machine as an Underwriter.
Broker and Lender Services and Products
The lending industry is notorious for its abysmal 18% average customer retention rate… But it doesn’t have to be that way. Sales Boomerang, the #1 automated borrower intelligence and retention platform, identifies customers in a lender’s database who are ready to refinance, ensuring lenders never lose those opportunities to a competitor. Sales Boomerang’s 100+ clients record an average 65% borrower retention rate and 20-40% lift to loan volume. For results like theirs, join the quest to ensure there’s No Borrower Left Behind™.
With many of its clients experiencing record volume and staffing working at capacity, implementing URLA was not on the top of anyone’s priority list coming into 2021. Coming to many client’s rescue, matchbox was able to support close to 100 clients in their URLA transition. The matchbox URLA offering included full Loan Origination System and workflow analysis, full development support, User Acceptance Testing workbook and guidance, plus continued, ongoing support. Additionally, via its URLA conversion projects, matchbox also provided direct, hands-on training to 10,000 mortgage bankers. It’s been a busy few months for the matchbox team and they are honored to have the opportunity to be such a trusted partner for so many lenders during this stressful time. With the URLA conversion now complete, matchbox is turning it focus to helping its clients on driving Operational efficiencies through technology and excited new offerings in 2021. Contract Frank Fiore to discuss how matchbox could help you in achieving your 2021 goals.
Consumer-first servicing modernization: That’s Sagent in four words, per CEO Dan Sogorka’s Sagent rebranding announcement. And check out his quote on pandemic-era mortgage servicing: “While most lender servicing systems scrambled to code pandemic methodology into their ancient infrastructure, Sagent was powering fast homeowner hardship self-serve and real-time configurability to ensure servicer compliance with real-time policy changes. That’s the Sagent brand: caring for you so you can care for consumers when they need it most.” This is definitely a must-read post on modern fintech branding and how deep the servicing software rabbit hole goes.
Number one! Freedom Mortgage was recently recognized as the #1 VA and #1 FHA lender in the U.S. in total origination volume by Inside Mortgage Finance for 2020. CEO and founder Stanley Middleman credits the achievement to the company’s hard work and dedication to provide value to active military, veterans, and underserved community supporting their dream of homeownership. “It’s a remarkable feat,” Middleman said. “We’re honored to serve our customers and proud to give back to communities across the country. I’m amazed by what our company has accomplished over the past three decades, but especially over the past year. We’ve now managed to grow through one of the biggest housing crises in the past 75 years and a pandemic, and we’re still going strong.” Email AskFreedom@FreedomWholesale.com to contact the Wholesale Division for its comprehensive purchase/refinance product suite featuring competitive conventional, VA, and FHA pricing.
Rise above the chaos created by the disruption of today’s mortgage environment and stop struggling to keep up with the velocity of changes. Do something different… let CLARIFIRE® do it for you! Don’t know much about CLARIFIRE? No problem! Download our eBook to answer the all-important question…What is CLARIFIRE? On the surface, it is a proven, revolutionary automated workflow application specifically configured to modernize default servicing. Underneath, CLARIFIRE provides dynamically coordinated interactions creating the organizational excellence to manage your distressed borrowers, whether they are facing default from hardship, seeking disaster relief, or in need of pandemic assistance. Our eBook looks at 10 meaningful ways CLARIFIRE improves your organization’s ability to engage and transform business processes, as well as convert chaos into clarity. Connect with us to find out how you can easily future-proof your organization with CLARIFIRE®, truly BRIGHTER AUTOMATION®.
Training and Events
13 top producing loan officers answer, “What do you say to get a meeting with a Realtor,” and, “What do you say when asked “What’s your rate?”. This free event is sponsored by Mortgage Coach and Win By Noon: tomorrow at 9AM PT.
Join NTXAMP in Dallas on Wednesday, March 10th at 11:30 AM to understand “Top 5 Mistakes Brokers Make Before Their State Exam” with Joel Runnels. Limited seating, please RSVP today.
I'm excited to be speaking at Qualia's Future of Real Estate Summit this week. Join me at the free, virtual event on Thursday, March 11th to hear insights on how technology is being used to deepen local ties and expand regional footprints. Save your spot here. Most of all, we’d love for you to join us at FORES21! Explore the theme “Real Estate is Local,” offering perspectives on how industry innovation and technology are enabling and strengthening local expertise. Speakers include Joe Tyrrell, President of ICE Mortgage Technology, Spencer Rascoff, entrepreneur, and co-founder of Zillow and Pacaso, and basketball legend, Magic Johnson.
March 11th is the date for the Flagstar FLEX March Series, Forbearance and Delinquency Forecast. Flagstar Bank’s Courtney Thompson, SVP of Default Mortgage Servicing, will share her insights on recent updates to forbearance and the CARES Act.
Join Plaza Home Mortgage on Friday, March 12th to learn how to use the redesigned Uniform Residential Loan Application or URLA (also known as Fannie Mae Form 1003 and Freddie Mac Form 65), to process your loan application. Understand what documents to gather, how to review and verify required documentation, and prepare the loan application for underwriting. Use Arch MI resources to assist you in your loan processing review.
Register for the WMBA Meeting with Realtor Panel, on Tuesday, March 16th with Glenda Krull, Managing Broker of Windermere Alderwood; Dahni Malgarini-Logar, Managing Broker of RE/MAX; Scott Bautista, Managing Broker of Compass Real Estate; and Scott Dickinson, J.D., Managing Broker of Coldwell Banker Bain.
Don’t miss MGIC’s exclusive webinar, “Evaluating Self-Employed Income During COVID-19!”, offered March 18 for a review interpreting YTD financial statements, questions to consider regarding the pandemic’s impact on your borrower’s business, and share our free P&L Statement analysis tool. MGIC offers complimentary webinars every month to help customers succeed in today’s mortgage insurance industry.
Register for the WMBA Meeting with Realtor Panel, on Tuesday, March 16th with Glenda Krull, Managing Broker of Windermere Alderwood, Dahni Malgarini-Logar, Managing Broker of RE/MAX, Scott Bautista, Managing Broker of Compass Real Estate, and Scott Dickinson, J.D., Managing Broker of Coldwell Banker Bain.
The 2021 American Mortgage, scheduled on March 23rd, will bring together policymakers, investors, leading experts in the financial services industry and mortgage practitioners of every kind, providing a prime opportunity to discuss important industry issues and analyze the progress being made in Washington. This year's program will be hosted in an innovative, virtual environment filled with live sessions and OnDemand content.
ICE Mortgage Technology's Online Conference is from March 8th – 26th. In addition to unveiling the unified vision for Ellie Mae, MERS, and Simplifile as the three entities come together as ICE Mortgage Technology, the conference will include panels, interactive breakout sessions, and keynotes on timely mortgage industry subjects. Find more information about “Together We Experience: Experience 2021” here. Registration is free, click here and sign up for hands-on training workshops and advanced sessions.
Be part of creating industry standards. Learn how via the MISMO Boot Camp Course on March 22-23, 1-4:30 pm ET. This newly revamped and updated class focuses on how MISMO operates and develops standards and how to effectively leverage MISMO's core components. This course is designed for both business and technical professionals. Course features include: (1) MISMO standards, certifications, and resources and how to leverage them to meet industry challenges, (2) Key updates on MISMO Logical Data Model, Life of Loan Business Process Model and API Toolkit and (3) Tips on how to engage with the MISMO community most effectively.
The 2021 American Mortgage Conference has been rescheduled to take place on March 23rd. “It will take place in an innovative, virtual format filled with live sessions and OnDemand content that includes a panel of industry experts, peer discussion, live networking sessions with exhibitors and general session headline speakers at this year's event. Join leading experts in the financial services industry, policymakers, investors, and mortgage practitioners.”
October Research will be hosting Fannie Mae SVP and Chief Economist Douglas G. Duncan for a quarterly Economic Forecast Series March 23rd. Hear his insights on housing inventory, home price appreciation, his expectations for the mortgage market, and much more.
Here is free GSFA DPA online lender training.
Need a speaker for an event? For the entire month of March, XINNIX is offering 50% off its entire XINNIXspeaks Catalog.
The big news to close last week was the unexpected jump in the headline figure of the employment situation report for February, which showed that the economy added 379k jobs in February. While the report was excellent news for a struggling American economy, before we get ahead of ourselves, there was no big impact on the unemployment rate or number of underemployed workers, and the labor force participation rate declined. Overall, the number of employed persons has fallen by 8.5 million over the past year.
With such a positive headline on that payrolls report, the talk turned back toward inflation and rising yields. Though MBS and U.S. Treasuries ended the week on a mixed note, with the 10-year unchanged on the day Friday, it still closed up +9 bps for the week and touched 1.62 percent at one point. Minneapolis Fed President Kashkari said that the recent upward movement "suggests that our framework is delivering what we wanted it to deliver," and when there is an actual "real" rise in yields, it would give him pause. St. Louis James Bullard was unbothered as well, and separately dismissed operation twist, where the duration of purchases of bonds would be changed, as a policy option at this time. It would appear the Fed is looking for further stresses in the market before acting.
The mostly likely market moving event of this week will be the $120 billion mini-Refunding, which begins tomorrow. Investors will proceed with caution after recent memories of a horrendous 7-year auction. On the data front, markets this week will get updates on wholesale and retail inflation as well as consumer sentiment with the Fed in their blackout period. Today’s calendar begins later this morning with February employment trends and wholesale inventories and sales. The only other event is a short duration T-bill auction. Helping the demand for what lenders are producing, today’s MBS purchase schedule is the largest on the remaining schedule, targeting up to $7.7 billion MBS, including over $6.2 billion UMBS30s. We begin the day with Agency MBS prices worse/down roughly a tick (1/32) and the 10-year yielding 1.58 percent after the U.S. Senate passed the $1.9 trillion stimulus package over the weekend.
Bluepoint Mortgage is canvassing the Rust Belt States to find experienced Account Executives looking to graduate to higher compensation levels and leverage their experience by joining a premier Wholesaler. “With nearly three decades in the business, Bluepoint Mortgage offers prestige and experience to its broker partners. Offering extremely competitive pay, a flexible and fun work/life balance, and a strong product offering, we’re looking for the Account Executives who have what it takes to be a Scotsman Guide Top AE in the nation, joining ranks with Bluepoint’s nationally ranked top performers! In fact, Bluepoint is proud to have 50% of its AEs rank in Scotsman Guide’s top 150 Account Executives list. If you think you have what it takes reach out to Allen Samuel, Manager Partner at Bluepoint, or Char Mangrello, VP Human Resources.”
A Non-QM correspondent/conduit is looking for a Head of Credit and Operations. The tech-focused firm is backed by an investor with $20bn in capital. The Head of Credit and Operations will set credit philosophy for the firm, design guidelines, oversee the pre-purchase pipeline, and grow and manage a team of operations and credit professionals. The ideal candidate will have experience managing credit policy for a Non-QM originator or conduit, overseeing third-party due diligence firms, and have familiarity with all operational aspects of correspondent loan acquisition. A background with Non-Agency securitizations, and experience working with DU/LP and cutting-edge mortgage technology vendors is a plus. For confidential consideration, please email resume to Chrisman LLC’s Anjelica Nixt for forwarding.
Caliber Home Loans CEO Sanjiv Das recently wrote an insightful op-ed for MarketWatch on why the housing market is resilient. Das touched on several topics, the first being historically low interest rates in 2020 which have incentivized new homebuyers and resulted in Caliber hiring more loan officers. Separately, with forbearance rates dropping significantly, it appears consumers have weathered many economic challenges. If another stimulus package is passed, Das envisions more Americans being able to afford their mortgage payments, benefitting both consumers and lenders. Finally, the increased importance of customer service, particularly during trying times, has helped many families. At Caliber we remained focused on helping our borrowers and we implemented chatbots powered by AI to better facilitate customer inquiries. Caliber is committed to its mission of being the number one lender for employees and customers alike. To be immediately considered for Operations or Sales positions, email Jonathan Stanley or Brian Miller respectively.
Cancel your third-party marketing tools. Geneva Financial has integrated reviews, listing sites, lead dialers and more into their marketing platform at no cost to branches or loan officers. “We’re a top 10 employer with rapid turn times and an unmatched no-cost marketing platform. Geneva has just been named a Top 10 Large Mortgage Company to Work For by National Mortgage News. Geneva was also recently named the #1 Mortgage Lender by consumers in Arizona, home of their Corporate Office, on the annual Ranking Arizona Consumer Poll of best businesses. Geneva Financial is filling Branch Manager and Loan Officer positions in 44 states. With the recent addition of a National Operations Manager focused on industry-leading turn-times, Geneva is committed to closing your deals while paying you more! Explore Branch and Originator opportunities!