The risk-free 2-year Treasury began 2022 yielding .73 and is now at 2.52 percent! Does your company offer 2-1 buydown loans? Do your LOs even know what a 2-1 buydown loan is? (If they don’t, bring them up to speed internally or through a program like XINNIX.) Things are changing. My gauge is very unofficial, but the number of emails saying, “Hey Rob, I am retiring but love your Commentary so can you change my email to…” is picking up. And I received this note from a mortgage vet. “Well, with the rates going up, looks like the mortgage industry is heading for another purge. We’ll start seeing the LOs that only had refi business slowly migrate away. Loss of ops staff still continuing. Like we haven’t heard this song before.” Lending aside, what do we make of these recent headlines? Investors place inflation bet on US farmland. Prices for prime Midwest ground climbed by up to a third in the past year as world food prices hit records. Rihanna is making her debut… on Forbes' coveted world's billionaires list. Dubai lures clutch of big crypto firms with tailored regulations: FTX and Binance set up operations in the Gulf state after securing approval under new licensing regime. Amazon inks deals to send its internet satellites into space: Arianespace, the ULA, and Jeff Bezos’s Blue Origin to provide backbone for high-speed networks. Uber adds planes and trains to automobiles in renewed “superapp” push: Ride-booking app aims to become a broader travel hub. Dang there’s lot going on! (Today’s audio version of the commentary is available here and this week’s is sponsored by Optimal Blue, a division of Black Knight. Today’s offers a tag-team discussion with Brennan O’Connell and John Dumonsau on how lenders are using data to create more accurate secondary marketing models.)
Lender and Broker Products and Services
Since 2008, FormFree has offered innovative digital tools that make the homebuying process easier, safer, and more accessible. Now as one of the first authorized report providers for Freddie Mac’s revolutionary Loan Product Advisor (LPASM) verification of income (VOI) solution, FormFree is driving credit inclusivity by enabling consumers paid via direct deposit to authorize lender assessment of income using direct-source bank data. Along with its exciting new partnership with Freddie Mac, the fintech provider has seen impressive internal growth. In the past month alone, FormFree has brought on Patrick Rutherford, Eric Lapin, and Mary Costello in executive- and director-level positions that will further FormFree’s meteoric growth. Find out how FormFree’s expert team and award-winning digital solutions can help make your lending processes safer, faster, and more inclusive.
Have you heard? UniversalCIS | Credit Plus recently rebranded as Xactus. The company embarked on this strategic initiative after completing the recent mergers of Credit Plus, Universal Credit Services, CIS Credit Solutions, Avantus, DataFacts Lending Solutions, and SharperLending. The family of firms shared the same core value – having an unrivaled commitment to customer success – so it stands to reason that Xactus is moving forward driven by data and leading by service. It is transforming verifications to advance the delivery of the modern mortgage – a movement that reviews and challenges the existing situation and uncovers innovative ways to apply technological advancements, helping lenders enhance profitability by closing more loans more quickly. Want to learn more? Stop by the Xactus booth or email email@example.com to schedule a meeting at the MBA’s Technology Solutions Conference and Expo next week at The Bellagio.
2 reasons you need risk, and an internal audit. Risk has a place in every mortgage company. Without it, you can’t grow. But exactly how much risk can you tolerate? An internal audit from Richey May can help answer that question in two important ways: 1) Know your risk appetite. Every mortgage company has a unique risk appetite. An internal audit can help you understand what yours is and how to balance risk against it. It enables you to mitigate risk to a level that lets leadership feel comfortable and still achieve business objectives. 2) Protect your licenses and agency approvals. Mortgage lenders need internal audits because agencies and regulators require them. Waiting until you get hit with a finding is a bad risk. To stay compliant, you need to adhere to regulatory requirements. Manage risk and grow your business. Learn more here. Talk to a Richey May expert today.
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Broker and Correspondent Products
In this rising interest rate environment, do you have the right tools to help your clients? Sprout Mortgage’s 40-year loan with a 10-year interest only option, allows for increased purchasing power as home prices skyrocket, by keeping the monthly payment lower than that of a typical 30-year loan which includes both interest and principal. It also helps property investor clients improve cash flow by lowering the carrying cost of the property. What’s more, today’s interest rate is fixed for 40 years! Consider tapping into the power of yet another one of Sprout’s uncommonly good mortgage solutions, by clicking here.
Advancial Federal Credit Union has offered financing for Condotels, Non-Warrantable Condos and Non-Warrantable Co-Ops in all 50 states since 2008 with great pricing. Frustrated by the restrictions placed on this sort of collateral by Non-QM or other lenders? Contact us today for a program preview and rate sheet. Additional programs include Jumbo no credit, work, student, EAD and other work authorization, asset depletion that can be coupled with all other income, removal of a departing residence from the DTI and reserves, cash out to 5mm with no cap on cash in hand, hobby farms, unpermitted or manufactured ADUs, deed restrictions, mixed use, and much more. Info can be found at www.advancialwholesale.com . Call 888-876-2328 or email John Burkel.
Calling all brokers! Are you ready to say goodbye to traditional jumbo loan guidelines that make it harder for your customers to achieve their homeownership dreams? When you work with Caliber Wholesale, qualifying more borrowers has never been easier. Here at Caliber, we are proud to provide your customers with more flexibility and financial freedom (and you with more solutions) by offering a more lenient jumbo option. With our groundbreaking jumbo products, you can expect: no tax transcripts necessary, no mortgage insurance requirements, low down payments, an easy-to-use AUS jumbo, and more. Ready to give your customers the options they need? Learn more about our jumbo products and how they can help you or contact Whslcontactus@caliberhomeloans.com to get approved with us today if you aren’t already.
Grow your pipeline with JMAC Lending with special offers on VA and FHA. Up to $500 off appraisal and no lender fee on IRRRL and Streamline. Act fast. Submit before 5.28.22. Our aggressively-priced Laguna Jumbo offers rates in the 3 percent for ARMs. Purchase and R/T Refi to $3M. Maximum cash-out to $1M. Only one appraisal required to $3M. High-balance loan limits eligible. Learn more about the fast-close Laguna Jumbo at our upcoming Webinar April 12 at 10AM PT hosted by JMAC’s Regional Sales Manager Al Gruzdis. Register today: Join JMAC today. Contact Sales@JMACLending.com or visit www.jmaclending.com. Correspondent products and services are now back at JMAC. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org. 25 years of dedicated service to mortgage brokers. Purchase is our priority! Get fast turn times and quick close. Ready. Set. Fund.
Conforming Conventional News
The Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) announced that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (the Enterprises) will require servicers to suspend foreclosure activities for up to 60 days if the servicer has been notified that a borrower has applied for assistance under the Department of the Treasury's Homeowner Assistance Fund (HAF).
Desktop appraisals are now an option for some loans, but do you still have questions? Watch the Noble Appraiser and friends walk through some frequently asked questions and explore the benefits of performing desktop appraisals. Watch the Desktop Appraisal Discovery.
Fannie Mae launched an automated web-based submission process for servicers to recommend law firms that perform default-related services. All future submissions of the Servicer Selection Form (Form 200) must be submitted through Quick Exchange. The excel format for Form 200 will no longer be accepted as of April 1st. View the Quick Exchange job aid for more information. Additionally, Fannie Mae updated the Form 629 submission process in Quick Exchange (release 1.3.0). New functionality includes the ability to add a secondary email address and edit a transfer request prior to Fannie Mae review and approval. View the release notes and visit the Servicing Transfer Approval page.
Multiple topics were discussed in Freddie Mac Guide Bulletin 2022-5. The introduction of Loan Product Advisor’s® (LPASM) asset and income modeler (AIM) using account data (AIM for income using direct deposits). Two enhancements for AIM for self-employed (tax transcript and tax extension) – effective April 15, 2022. An additional alternative to signatures on tax returns.
Updates related to AM Best requirements and ratings. Additional description and examples related to the coverage limit requirements for 1- to 4-unit properties. A clarification related to condominium unit mortgages that are Freddie Mac Home Possible® mortgages.
As announced in the Freddie Mac Single-Family Seller/Servicer Guide Bulletin 2021-36, Loan Product Advisor® (LPASM), Loan Quality Advisor® and Loan Selling Advisor® now include a new Community Land Trust loan program identifier. With this loan program identifier, the loan-to-value (LTV)/total LTV (TLTV)/home equity line of credit (HELOC) TLTV ratios will be calculated automatically without you having to enter the appraised value in the purchase price field.
Freddie Mac’s reorganized version of Guide Topic 5600, Property Eligibility and Appraisal Requirements, and all related Guide cross-references took effect on March 31, 2021. The reorganization was announced in Bulletin 2021-38. Review this video clip to learn more and refer to this mapping document for a detailed outline of relocated Topic 5600 content.
The Uniform Closing Dataset (UCD) critical edits Phase 2 transitioned from warning to critical in Loan Closing Advisor® on March 31, 2022. For more information on the UCD critical edits transition, visit the Freddie Mac UCD web page.
Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae announced that effective April 21, 2022, three Qualified Mortgage (QM)-related data points will transition from warning to critical. These edits are important because inaccurate information provided in these datapoints may prevent loans from being eligible for sale to Freddie Mac. Review the Loan Closing Advisor® April 21 release notes for details.
Freddie Mac made recent updates to Loan Selling Advisor® making it easier to deliver loans. Enhancements include Automated Warehouse Provider Form 996E for Guarantor and MultiLender Contracts, New Loan Program Identifier for Community Land Trust (CLT) Mortgages, New and Updated Loan Selling Advisor Training Resources and ULDD Phase 4a Specification Updates. Discover What’s New and Launching in Loan Selling Advisor®
Capital Markets: Some Yield Curve Steepening
The yield curve steepened yesterday as markets continued to digest the FOMC minutes, particularly to the prospects of the Fed beginning quantitative tightening at the May meeting. St. Louis Fed President James Bullard said he prefers boosting rates to 3 percent to 3.25 percent in the second half of 2022 while Chicago Fed President Charles Evans and Atlanta Fed President Bostic said they favor raising rates to neutral while still monitoring how the economy performs as they proceed.
In other news of interest, Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey saw further increases in mortgage rates with the 30-year and 15-year fixed rates up to 4.72 percent (+5-basis points) and 3.91 percent (+8-basis points) higher by 159-basis points and 149-basis points, respectively from a year ago. This is obviously impacting application activity and home purchase sentiment.
Today’s calendar is an uneventful one with just February wholesale inventories, expected to be unchanged from January. The Desk will purchase up to $2.15 billion in 30-year 3.0 percent through 4.0 percent MBS. We begin the day with Agency MBS prices worse a few ticks and the 10-year yielding 2.68 after closing yesterday at 2.66 percent.
Employment, Promotions, and Personnel Moves
Last Friday National Bank Holdings Corporation announced an agreement to acquire Bank of Jackson Hole with operations in Jackson Hole, WY and Boise, ID. There are advantages in being an originator for a national bank, and NBH is looking for growth-oriented originators in its footprint states which include CO, MO, KS, TX, UT, NM, ID, and WY. Any loan originators interested in a career with NBH, please send me a resume for forwarding.
“Create a better future by joining a team that is trustworthy, financially stable, and community oriented. First Federal Bank is actively recruiting Correspondent and Wholesale Account Executives. This role will generate customers who refer consistent volume, maintain relationships with referral partners, generate new business, and provide the best customer service to customers with innovative and creative solutions. The bank is also seeking Regional Sales Managers for the Retail Division to help us grow. This individual, along with the Director of Residential Sales, will be responsible for hiring, developing, and retaining the regional sales team. FFB is a 60-year-old mutual savings bank and mortgage lender offering an attractive salary and benefits package including a phenomenal 401K with a 12.5 percent match. If you are a qualified and motivated individual with the experience to recruit and manage this type of business line, let’s talk. To learn more or apply, email Anjelica Nixt and specify this opportunity.”
A leading national lender with a retail and wholesale platform is seeking a Director of Reverse Mortgage Lending to help build and grow an in-house reverse mortgage program. The ideal candidate is a demonstrated leader with minimum ten years robust experience in all facets of reverse lending, including but not limited to, development and implementation of a business plan, training, technology/LOS customization, state requirements, marketing, sales and operations recruitment and management, and secondary market relationships. The company is seeking a leader with a proven track record of growth, and who is a partner with and manages all aspects of a very strong operations, technology, and product development team. Please send resumes to Chrisman LLC’s Anjelica Nixt to setup a discussion and specify the opportunity.
NOVA® Home Loans is proud to announce Ryan Vondrak was promoted to Chief Executive Officer on January 1, 2022. Former CEO, Jon Volpe, transitioned to Chairman of the Board following 27 years of service. Ryan began his career in mortgage banking with First Magnus Financial Corporation in 2003 where he became a key member of their Capital Markets team. He joined NOVA in 2010 and was instrumental in creating a Capital Markets division, in which he served as Chief Capital Markets Officer before his promotion to Chief Operating Officer in 2021. In his role as CEO, Ryan will be focused on continuing NOVA’s path of responsible growth while upholding the company’s Core Values. NOVA® Home Loans is consistently ranked among the Top 50 Mortgage Lenders in the United States and as one of the Best Places to Work in the Southwest. With branches in Arizona, California, Colorado, and Nevada, NOVA® is licensed in 15 states and offers a fast-paced, customer-oriented work environment with a competitive compensation and benefits package. Contact us for more information about joining the NOVA® Home Loans team.
Tom Gledhill has been promoted to Vice President (VP) of Sales at Utah-based mortgage lender Veritas Funding. Mr. Gledhill currently serves as the company’s Regional Manager, but will assume his new position effective March 1, 2022. Mr. Gledhill will be tasked with the continued growth of sales and recruitment for the lender. “With over 25 years of experience, Tom will bring energy, ideas, innovation, and an extensive knowledge base to our growing sales team,” said Veritas Funding CEO Bryce Long. Veritas Funding is a national mortgage lender based in Salt Lake City, UT. Founded in 2004, the company is an approved Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac ‘seller/servicer’ who provides a broad range of loan products to borrowers across the U.S.