“Some are born to meet, some achieve meetings, and some have meetings thrust upon them.” There are definitely in-person meeting “green shoots” sprouting ahead of the residential and commercial lending conference season. A survey done during a session last week hosted by the Mortgage Bankers Association for state and local organizations showed the vast majority were planning in-person events in 2021. (For example, I will be sharing the stage with Brian Montgomery in next month’s MBAG convention in Ponte Vedra, Florida.) Yes, Georgia, Florida, Texas, and California have every intention of having in-person conferences starting next month with safety as a paramount concern; more events and training below. I’m sure many sessions will highlight technology and scaling, and the audio version of today’s commentary is available here and is sponsored by Candor, the dynamic, adaptive underwriting engine.

Products and Services

Loan Officers, are you struggling to make the shift from the refi-driven market to a purchase-dominated market? Now is the time to double down on your relationships with your Real Estate and builder partners. Remind your agents how vital they are to your business and that you are all in when it comes to providing value. Usherpa automatically keeps your name in front of your agents with valuable marketing content, business-building alerts, and elegant co-branding campaigns. Is your CRM tapping into data intelligence and multi-channel marketing technology to build your referral machine? Here’s how to supercharge your Realtor relationships today. You’ve earned their trust, now remind Realtors of what you bring to the table!

Nearly 1/5th of your lead list could enter the mortgage market within 120 days with Service 1st’s lead generation portfolio, powered by Experian. When using Experian’s “In the Market” propensity model, consumers who score within the top 20% model tier are 80% likely to enter the mortgage market within 1 to 4 months. That’s powerful, instant data! Upload existing lists or create custom consumer lists using attribute combinations, including credit score, homeownership, mortgage balance, and zip codes. Create loyalty with unqualified prospects by leveraging CreditXpertTMSchedule with one of our friendly experts to learn more about predictive tools and other result-driven loan origination solutions. Please note conditions apply to use these solutions. A knowledgeable Service 1st representative will review this information with you.

Broker and Wholesale News

loanDepot Wholesale is thrilled to announce its new and improved Jumbo program. Jumbo Advantage Express is a proprietary product that does not require any second signatures or investor approvals with loan amounts starting at $1 above conforming limits and up to $2,000,000. Available for purchase, rate & term refinance, and cash-out refinance on primary residence, second home, and investment properties. Other program highlights include: Up to 89.99% LTV with no MI required over 80% LTV, income, assets, and reserve requirements per DU findings, credit scores as low as 660, 30 and 15 year fixed rate terms, and up to $500,000 cash-out. Get started with LDW today! 

Brokers, imagine your marketing with no boundaries! While many other lenders pitch space age marketing solutions, Orion Lending provides Broker Partners with the very latest in mortgage marketing technology. The STAR Marketing StudioTM empowers users with an all-encompassing marketing suite and cloud-based design platform to host, edit and publish customizable English and Spanish brandable collateral. Interested in learning more? Visit www.starmarketingstudio.com. If you are ready to leverage STAR Marketing StudioTM, it’s time to do business with Orion Lending. Get Approved Today and start submitting loans by the end of the day!  For additional inquiries, please email info@orionlending.com.

Caliber Home Loans always goes BIG for our brokers and we’re excited to announce the return of Caliber Jumbo. When your borrowers are in the market for higher-end, luxurious homes, a typical loan amount might not work. Many times, the home value will exceed the typical Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac loan servicing limits. Jumbo loans provide your borrowers a solution to get the funds they need so they can purchase the home of their dreams. Fixed and ARM options, up to a 90% LTV, and $2.5M max loan amounts are all part of this huge offering. Available for Purchase or Refinance, Caliber Jumbo is a flexible solution for your customers. Step into greater opportunities with Caliber Jumbo! Reach out today or click here to find out how to become an approved wholesale lender.”

Introducing the Freedom Mortgage Wholesale Division’s Big Spring Purchase Tee Off! Offer a hole-in-one experience with every new Conventional, VA, and FHA purchase! Enjoy 3 Business Day Priority Purchase Underwriting and a (.250) LLPA incentive for all Conventional, VA, and FHA purchases. Plus, offer more buying power for your Jumbo VA borrowers! Freedom Mortgage is proud to offer eligible Veteran jumbo purchase borrowers no down payment VA-backed loans in all areas of the country for any home price. To learn more, check out Freedom’s rate sheet or email AskFreedom@FreedomWholesale.com to have an Account Executive contact you.

Mountain West Financial Wholesale posted Bulletin 21W-023 regarding revisions and clarifications that have been incorporated into the most recent version of the FHA 4000.1 Handbook. 

Lakeview Wholesale has launched its VA IRRRL Program.

Take control of the funding process like never before with FlexClose®, offered by Plaza Home Mortgage® through its Wholesale channel. FlexClose is a new way to fund, which allows you more control over when funding occurs, even after-hours and on weekends: close faster and more efficiently by giving you more closing hours in a day, and more closing days in a week and month.

PCF Wholesale announced three big improvements: Max loan amount for FHA/VA has been raised to $1.5MM, minimum FICO for FHA/VA is now 600, and the pricing adjustment for self-employed borrowers is cut in half to -0.500. Find PCF on Loan Sifter.

Don’t forget that appraisal fees in Mohave County Arizona increased. Read MWF Wholesale Bulletin 21W-014 for more information.

First Community Mortgage Wholesale Announcement 2021-4 discusses Paying Down and Paying Off Accounts & Installment Debt.

Training and Events in April

Are you ready to feel more balance in your life? Think 9 weeks of time off every year is just a fantasy? Think again! 20-year banking industry veteran and best-selling author Jessica Peterson has discovered the secrets to spending every minute more wisely while effectively building and nurturing your social media connections. Join Jessica and MGIC on April 21 for a webinar that will help you increase your productivity and balance through efficient social media and communication strategies. Register today! All attendees will receive a copy of Jessica’s book, “Create the Perfect Day”.

It may be April 5th, but is your servicing risk management strategy still making a fool out of you? Don’t get caught using fool’s gold as your servicing risk management strategy. MQMR has the treasure map for striking gold with this free white paper, Better Together: How to Create a Comprehensive Servicing Risk Management Strategy.And, to help you find where “X marks the spot,” MQMR’s Julie McCurley and Lisa Butler are hosting a TMConnect Webinar titled, “Cover Your Assets,” on April 13 at 4PM ET.

Join Plaza for an educational session designed to help expand your knowledge of the various renovation products that are available through Plaza Home Mortgage®. This April 6th webinar is brought to you by The Mortgage Collaborative (TMC) will hone in on specific areas that you need to know when working with renovation loans. And join Plaza for Selling Renovation Loans on Friday April 9, 11:00 AM PT and a Renovation Operational Overview on Friday April 16, 11:00 AM PT.

There’s still time to register for the 2021 CMLA Mortgage Lenders Expo. This 3-day comprehensive expo includes virtual education sessions on April 7-8 and April 9th is an

In-person networking event at TopGolf Centennial.

Join Eddy Perez, CEO of Equity Prime Mortgage, Alex Kutsishin, CEO of Sales Boomerang, and Jim Park, Executive Chairman of TMC, on April 8 at 2PM ET for a webinar titled “How EPM Uses Sales Boomerang to Become the Lender Their Borrower Never Forgets” as the trio discuss Equity Prime’s strategies for creating customers for life.  

Friday the 9th is the Mortgage Collaborative’s Rundown with Rich and Rob. Rich Swerbinsky, the COO of The Mortgage Collaborative, and I will be discussing current events in the mortgage market for 30 minutes starting at 3PM ET: “The Rundown with Rob and Rich.”

CMLA's Annual Mortgage Lenders Expo is back set to take place through a virtual experience on April 7-8.

Register today for the MBA’s Spring Conference and Expo, April 20-22, stream it live or catch up on-demand after the conference. Targeted tracks include IMB Business Strategy & Operations. Secondary & Capital Markets. Tech Solutions (Sponsor: FINASTRA). Servicing Solutions.

Click here to view loanDepot’s April Training Calendar.

The April 13th edition of OriginatorTech will feature: Blueprint, Capacity, Mortgage Cadence, Sales Boomerang and Zenly by Calyx. Reserve your spot today.

Attend MMLA’s April 15th virtual Sales Symposium to hear the fabled Victoria Deluce dissect the latest news on Secondary Marketing. Also due up are at this virtual event are Josh Pitts, Kristin Messerli and more.

WMBA’s April Event, Top Producers Panel, is coming up on April 20th. Listen to reps from Cornerstone Home Lending, Caliber, and Guild.

Register for the MIAC Live Webinar on Thursday, April 22nd to learn how to navigate the MSR market in this rising rate environment.

PMI training? MGIC offers complimentary webinars every month to help customers succeed in today’s mortgage insurance industry, including “Your Charisma Counts! Improve Your Presence and Communication Skills Virtually and Beyond”, on April 22. Genworth Mortgage Insurance offer live webinars in April, as does National MI: Visit the National MI website.

April 22-24 is the MBA’s Independent Mortgage Bank, Secondary Marketing, Servicing, and Technology virtual conference. Huh? No more grappling with the NY Marriott elevator bank for the secondary marketing folks?

Capital Markets

Face it: This spring’s economic narrative is going to center around new and re-opening businesses benefiting from increased vaccinations and easing of government restrictions on social activity. Friday, we learned that the leisure and hospitality industry led the way in job gains for the second consecutive month in March, adding 280,000 jobs. The brisk economic turnaround, however, has led to a record number of businesses reporting one or more positions unfilled due to lack of labor supply or lack of qualified talent. In addition to short labor supply, many manufacturers are facings materials shortages due to the increased demand for finished goods. In fact, manufacturing supplier delivery times have increased to levels not seen since 1974 when the oil embargo disrupted global supply chains. Despite the headwinds, manufacturing continues to benefit from increasing orders and activity is at a 37-year high. As supplier costs continue to increase many expect businesses to take advantage of their current pricing power to pass some of those additional costs on to consumers. Economists expect the price pressure to subside once the bottlenecks clear in which case the Fed will be able to keep monetary policy loose longer rather than being forced into action to slowdown a potentially overheating economy.

Rates went up a shade on Friday after the stronger-than-expected-payrolls report. Economists were quick to point out that more low paying jobs are returning as business resumes. The benchmark U.S. T-Note closed yielding 1.72 percent. In terms of news, April’s first full week calendar, besides the normal weekly releases, includes updates on services PMIs, factory orders, trade, consumer credit, PPI, and wholesale inventories and sales. The minutes from the March 16/17 FOMC meeting will be released on Wednesday. For those who have come to rely on the demand helping fixed-income prices, the NY Fed Desk is scheduled to purchase up to $28.1bn MBS, or $5.6bn per day on average (including $5.2 billion of Agency MBS today).

Today is little of consequence for scheduled news: Markit Services PMI, March Employment Trends Index and March ISM services PMI and February factory orders. The Treasury will sell $111 billion of short-term notes that have no bearing on mortgage pricing. The week starts with Agency MBS prices worse nearly .125 from Friday and the 10-year yielding 1.73.


Employment and Transitions

New Year: Fresh start! Are you an experienced Wholesale Account Executive wanting to make a change? Looking for a company with an entrepreneurial mortgage culture of collaboration, team-based success, and the security of working for a bank? Then it’s time to call FLCBank’s Bob Eisendrath, Strategic National Account Manager (414.350.3986). FLCBank is agency approved and has a suite of bank jumbo products along with IO options on both conventional and jumbo loan balances. In addition, you have access to offering warehouse lines to your non-delegated clients. Come join our bank and have fun again with a team environment where everyone is passionate about delivering an exceptional customer experience with every loan. Open territories are GA, TN, AL, NC/SC, VA, MA, IL, OH, MI, AZ, TX, CO. We offer competitive compensation, an energized culture, and an experienced operations & support staff. FLCBank is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.

Mike Bugbee has joined BSI Financial Services as VP of Client Success to lead the company’s broader strategy to better align the delivery of its robust and client-centric focus with the expanding needs of BSI’s growing primary and specialty servicer client base.