People ask me for advice all the time. For example, I tell guys, “Don’t ask your wife when dinner will be ready while she’s mowing the lawn.” With the move in rates, LOs are looking for advice, hoping for free extensions. Everyone knows that LOs are out there adding value and wealth to and for their clients, but since the Paleozoic era lender’s management has dealt with “Lose the deal or give the client an extension” question, especially troubling if the loan hasn’t moved past the app stage. “Free anything” is not likely if a particular originator or broker shop constantly asks for extensions or concessions. It’s rough out there, and one broker in Michigan sent, “Rob, it’s brutal here, so thanks for the info on supply chain hassles and mortgage rates yesterday. ‘You're not going to hire workers if you can't get the parts’ sums it up.” On the backend, capital markets personnel are always looking to increase efficient, accurate information, and MCT is offering up a new way to quote MBS. Join presenters Curtis Richins and Phil Rasori on October 14 at 10 a.m. PT for a webinar introducing Agile to the marketplace. Speaking of efficiency, today’s audio version of the commentary is available here and this week’s is sponsored Candor Technology, helping underwriters and company improve underwriting effectiveness.

Broker and Lender Products and Services

Sports writers have been chiming in with their national champion and Heisman trophy predictions since the start of the college football season, and by this point the stats are starting to show whose predictions might come true and who shanked it. In that spirit, here are some fun mortgage stats: in a recent 7-day period, lenders using Sales Boomerang’s borrower intelligence and retention automation platform received 32,173 notifications with a total potential volume of over $9 billion. Of those, the heaviest-hitting notification was the mortgage inquiry, alerting lenders when a customer or prospect has shopped with a competitor in the last 24 hours. With over 22,000 mortgage inquiry notifications for a total potential volume of nearly $6.2 billion, Sales Boomerang lenders were able to intercept their borrowers before they scored a loan with another lender. Schedule a demo with Sales Boomerang today and start seeing Heisman-worthy stats.

Lenders are experiencing significant origination volume and the impact of recent increased market volatility. It’s more important than ever to look at your business holistically and make informed decisions for maintaining a strong list of secondary delivery options, honing the accuracy and transparency of your company’s pricing and margins, and more. In a recent HousingWire interview, Black Knight Managing Director Rob Kessel examines ways lenders can manage margin compression and a tight housing market by better pricing loans. This includes a look at the importance of accurately pricing MSR assets on a loan-level basis with third-party, broker-managed assumptions. Don’t miss this brief, informative interview in learning more about fine-tuning MSR valuation. Watch the interview here.

Most mortgage lenders outsource critical operations to technology companies to reduce costs, mitigate risk, or find specialized skillsets not staffed in-house. But recent changes in consumer behavior and expectations are incenting lenders to turn to technology companies for a much bigger ask: the latest and greatest borrower-engagement tactics for a competitive purchase market. Better yet, lenders are turning to tech companies because they need to differentiate themselves from their competition in the experience provided to consumers. But how do you find the right partner? Download Total Expert’s guide for three ways to identify the right technology partner to help you innovate and create customers for life.

What’s the solution to falling mortgage volumes? Increased efficiency is a start. The promise of digital lending is that lenders can do more with less, but that’s only true with the right software. LoanComplete™ from Fiserv has demonstrated a 32% increase in productivity for lenders who use it. That’s huge! LoanComplete automates mortgage loan processing and servicing tasks, giving mortgage originators and servicers greater control and helping streamline critical loan processes to improve profitability and business operations. A life-of-loan solution, LoanComplete complements your existing loan origination system workflow, servicing and compliance systems, helping you process and service more loans, at less cost and risk. This is the answer to the market that’s coming. Learn more about all of the benefits by downloading Fiserv’s new white paper, “Achieving Success in the New Mortgage Ecosystem” today. And then email to schedule a meeting at the MBA Annual in San Diego.

Have you heard? Credit Plus and UniversalCIS have merged to become a paramount technology and credit provider. The two firms entered into the transaction with strong, individual legacies that are now joined together by a singular vision: To truly revolutionize the mortgage process. The organization isn’t solely focused on its size. Rather, its mission is to be the best, and it now has the resources and backing to make a significant impact on the future of the industry, and play a key role in digital mortgage transformation. One thing Credit Plus| UniversalCIS is especially good at is Portfolio Monitoring. You can get 50% more leads because you can monitor all three credit bureaus and be alerted when someone is shopping for a mortgage. Learn more. Stop by booth #700 at the MBA in San Diego or email to schedule a meeting.

Are you painfully aware of what you need to automate, but just not sure where to start? Say hello to RM Automate, powered by Zoral. Exclusive to Richey May, our expertise in mortgage banking sets a new standard in intelligent automation. An end-to-end solution from lead generation to post-closing, our platform streamlines and optimizes your entire operation by automating manual, repetitive work so your team can focus on more high-value tasks. Reduce errors and cycle times and boost capacity without adding staff. Schedule a demo today! 

Conforming Conventional Changes

As of October 8th, Fairway Wholesale Lending is accepting locks with Conventional loan limits up to $625,000 (previously $548,250) for 1-unit property in all contingent 48 states and counties. For Alaska & Hawaii the conforming loan limit will increase to $935,000 (previously $822,375).

Finance of America Mortgage LLC announced an interim increase in estimated 2022 conforming loan amounts to $625,000 for conventional single-family loans and is allowing higher limits for high-cost areas and homes with additional units. The change, effective yesterday across all of FAM’s lending channels, comes ahead of the usual late November announcement on conforming loan limits from the Federal Housing Finance Agency. It increases the maximum loan limit in certain markets by more than $75,000 for one-unit homes and nearly $150,000 for four-unit homes.

Starting with new locks as of Friday, October 1, Flagstar Bank improved LLPAs on Agency Investment Property listed in Announcement 21135.

Wells Fargo Funding updated additional sections in the Wells Fargo Funding Seller Guide including removing guidelines where Sellers will now follow Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac.

843.04: Eligible Transactions (Super Conforming – Prior Approval), 843.05: LTV/TLTV/CLTV (Super Conforming – Prior Approval), 900: Conforming Conventional LTV/TLTV/CLTV Matrices.

For complete requirements, refer to Seller Guide Section 820.15(b): Specific Property Types – Cooperatives.

New changes to Loan Level Price Adjustments (LLPAs) for Non-Owner and Second Home transactions are listed in Mountain West Financial Wholesale Bulletin 21W-068.

Mountain West Financial Wholesale Bulletin 21W-069 provides a summary of changes from Fannie Mae’s release of updates to DU® Version 11.0.

First Community Bank Wholesale posted highlights of FNMA’s DU September updates in FCM Wholesale Announcement 2021-26.

Stay up to date with loanDepot Wholesale information, view What’s New This Week in LoanDepot’s WNTW Newsletter.

PennyMac updated the Conventional Second Home LLPAs for Best Effort commitments taken on or after Wednesday, September 22, 2021, details in PennyMac Announcement 21-72.

Citi Correspondent Lending implemented changes to the Best Efforts LLPAs for cash-out, second homes and investment properties, found on page 3 of Best-Efforts rate sheet effective with new locks as of September 20th. In addition, the following adjuster was implemented on September 3, 2021: Conforming Fixed 20 and 30 Yr., FICO ≥700 and LTV ≤75: 0.100.

Beginning with Conventional rate sheets issued on and after Monday, September 27, 2021, Sellers are no longer required to use the Non-Owner Occupied (NOO) designated pricing bucket for non-High Bal Investment properties. Log in to AmeriHome SellerWeb and view Announcement Number: 20210912-CL

Caliber Home Loans Government and Conventional Updates Announcement CL21-62. The USDA Rural Housing Loan Program will be temporarily unavailable beginning October 1, 2021.

Fannie Mae’s Selling Guide update, SEL-2021-09, modifies the permitted homeownership education and counseling providers to allow qualified third parties to administer homeownership education and counseling, no longer requiring the sole use of the Framework® program, when it becomes effective January 2022. Other changes include the removal of constant maturity treasury indexed-ARMs and the replacement of references to the Software Subscription Agreement Master Terms and Conditions with a new Consolidated Technology Licensing Guide.

PennyMac expanded Conforming High Balance limits to include additional counties, effective for delegated and non-delegated Best-Efforts locks as of Monday October 11, 2021. Read PennyMac Announcement 21-79 for details.

Capital Markets

Point, whose literature states its “a leading fintech platform that helps homeowners unlock equity w/out taking on additional debt,” and Redwood Trust jointly announced the first securitization backed entirely by Home Equity Investments (HEI), major milestone for alternative real estate financing. “Home equity contracts” is something new. It's especially timely given that home foreclosures are spiking with the conclusion of the national moratorium. Many homeowners are also looking for alternatives to traditional mortgages and HELOCs in order to stave off losing their home. Point also recently announced commitments of more than $1 billion from leading real estate and MBS investors, including Atalaya Capital Management, Kingsbridge Wealth Management, Palisades Group, and the aforementioned Redwood Trust, to expand their offerings. 

Friday, we learned that the U.S. gained just 194k jobs in September, less than half of the expected 500k. Weak, but not weak enough to derail the expected tapering announcement from the Fed at the November FOMC meeting. Speaking of the FOMC, the minutes from the September FOMC meeting will be released tomorrow, in what is the likely highlight of this week’s economic calendar.

For other news, the MBA’s latest Forbearance and Call Volume Survey revealed that the total number of loans now in forbearance decreased by 27 bps to 2.62 percent of servicers’ portfolio volume in the prior week, meaning a reduction to 1.3 million homeowners in forbearance plans.

With the bond market now open again after the Columbus/Indigenous Peoples Day holiday, we have a relatively light week for data, which is typical for the week after the jobs report. There are some highlights, including inflation news tomorrow and Thursday, and retail sales, Michigan sentiment, and business inventories on Friday. The Desk will purchase up to $5.4 billion of MBS today, release a new two-week schedule and mid-October to mid-November MBS purchase estimate Thursday. We’ve already received the NFIB Small Business Optimism Index (hitting a six-month low) and later this morning brings the Job Openings Labor Turnover Survey for August. We begin the week with Agency MBS prices unchanged from Friday’s close and the 10-year yielding 1.61 after rising 15 bps over the course of the last five trading days.


Headquartered in San Diego, Synergy One Lending is proud to welcome six new branches over the past 30 days! Industry leaders Mary Tillery, Jon Trussell, and Matt Houston have joined in the Pacific Northwest, top-producers Philip Artt and Jessica Hernandez opened locations in Texas, and the amazing Lakewood team continues the momentum in Colorado! Travis Newton, whose markets have added $500MM in production in 2021 alone, credits S1L’s A+ onboarding experience as one of many reasons so many elite originators are being drawn to the company. For more information on how Synergy One delivers Speed, Ease, and Expertise to the home-buying experience, reach out to Aaron Nemec or Ben Green or visit Synergy One Lending.

The Mortgage Link is a well-capitalized, full-service lender with the tools in place to expand.  We are looking to bring on producing Mortgage Loan Originators and Branch Managers as we seek to broaden our reach across all markets in the US.  We have the balance sheet to scale, the margin flexibility to enable your growth, and the transparency of a true partner. Our MLOs’ reputations within the industry speak for themselves and are proof that the company they work for provides them the tools needed in this highly competitive landscape.  We’d like to speak with you about the opportunities we provide and how we can assist you in growing your business moving forward.  If you’re interested in working for, or partnering with, a company designed to help you stand out and develop innovative programs to succeed, contact Jon Lowe to discuss.

Finance of America Mortgage Offers All-New ADU Refinance Option, Increases Conforming Loan Limits! Finance of America Mortgage now offers an ADU refinance solution to homeowners who have an accessory dwelling unit, or ADU, on their property who may have taken out high-interest financing to create their ADU space. Homeowners can use their ADU to generate a new stream of income by renting their unit out to anyone or to provide an affordable living space for aging parents or adult children. Finance of America Mortgage is also offering conventional pricing on loans up to $625,000 for single-unit properties ahead of FHFA's expected loan limit announcement in November. This change helps boost Loan Advisors’ lending power to refinance and purchase borrowers, especially those in competitive markets with rapid home-price growth. Learn how you can join and take advantage of Finance of America Mortgage’s latest lending options by contacting Tim Cotten.

American Pacific Mortgage’s Fall Symposium will be November 3–4, 2021, at the Arizona Grand Resort. This year’s conference theme is NEXT. Attendees will have the opportunity to explore what’s NEXT with their business, strategy, influence, and growth, while experiencing all that APM has to offer. Speakers include Barry Habib, Dr. Amy Cuddy, economist Elliot Eisenberg, and APM’s leadership team. Attendees will also have the opportunity to join four breakout sessions led by AJ Vaden of Brand Builders Group, Josh Pitts from Shred Media, Megan Anderson with MBS Highway, and Geoff Zimpfer of Mortgage Marketing Institute. This event will help APM loan officers sharpen their edge, shift with the market, elevate their connections, and influence and disrupt the competition. To learn more about this event, click here. And if you’d like to be a guest at APM’s Fall Symposium, email Dustin Block.

Not strictly mortgage-related, but investment company Robinhood is searching for an experienced capital markets exec.

Speaking of capital markets,   has appointed 16-year industry vet Mario Gomez as EVP, Director of Capital Markets, and will be overseeing and growing the firm’s capital market consulting and support services for mortgage lender clients.