As the mortgage industry continues to respond to constantly changing rules and regulation, particularly the TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure rule requirements, one thing has become readily apparent — the only way to stay compliant is to improve collaboration between lenders and settlement agents.
Historically, the lender prepared early disclosures, often without collaboration with the settlement agent, and the settlement agent carried the burden of preparing the HUD-1 Settlement statement. Now, due to the strict tolerances on fees and high potential fines to the lender, most lenders are preparing the new forms, the Loan Estimate and Closing Disclosure, themselves and require information from the settlement agent earlier in the process.
The real question is not whether you believe collaboration is necessary, but if as a lender that collaboration will be manual or automated. Good collaboration technology will solve and automate the issues of fee naming, data re-entry and provide a systemic, auditable real-time process that is defensible.
“Collaboration with closing agents is crucial to deliver accurate Closing Disclosures in a timely manner,” said Jim Connell, chief information officer at Sierra Pacific Mortgage.“Simplifile is a well-designed solution with a clean interface that follows the Closing Disclosure format and will be easy for our staff to use.”
“One of the biggest issues with TRID is how lenders and settlement agents communicate changes to various documents on a timely basis,” said Country Bank Loan Servicing Officer Robert Olivier. “Simplifile’s Collaboration and Post Closing portal provides the ideal solution for us to collaborate on these changes to meet the required timeframes. It’s extremely well-designed and easy to use, which is a huge benefit for both our staff as well as our settlement agents.”
Good collaboration technology needs to include: collaboration, e-recording, and post closing that will connect lenders to settlement agents and allow both parties to securely share, validate, audit, track, record and collaborate on loan documents, data, and fees to ensure compliance.
“We already partnered with Simplifile on their e-recording solution for our servicing needs,” Oliver added. “We were very pleased with the increase in efficiencies we achieved using that product and the support that Simplifile provided to us. They have been very responsive to our needs and are committed to making sure that the Collaboration and Post Closing portal will help ensure that Country Bank is in compliance with the TRID regulations.”
Shane Erksine, president of OneTrust Home Loans, said, “One of the major reasons we chose Simplifile as our partner was their established network of settlement agents who are already using their services every day. We’re confident in their proven ability to provide an easy-to-use service with an intuitive interface that can successfully bridge the gap between multiple parties in the mortgage and real estate transaction.”
“Simplifile offered a great price and great product; what more can you ask for?” said Mortgage Closing Manager Kele Cuddy at First Community Mortgage. “Simplifile will help First Community Mortgage and our settlement agent partners quickly share fees and documents to meet Closing Disclosure (CD) and final documents timelines and requirements.”
With good collaboration technology, lenders don’t have to worry about tracking documents, data or communication through a separate system or service. Messaging between lenders and settlement agents within a good collaboration solution is tracked as part of the complete audit trail and reporting provided to aid in TRID compliance.
Our established e-recording network gives both parties the unique ability to view, access, and share post-closing information and statuses on recorded documents and data centrally. Simplifile’s platform is independent, supporting paper, hybrid, and fully electronic closings, and Collaboration and Post Closing are free services to settlement agents, helping to drive industry adoption.
About The Author
Paul Clifford is President of Simplifile. As President, Paul manages all aspects of Simplifile’s corporate strategy. Recognized as an e-recording industry founder, Paul frequently presents at state and national industry trade shows and conferences. Prior to founding Simplifile, Paul served as the Director of Corporate and Strategic Planning for iLumin Corp., where he was responsible for researching, modeling, and creating strategic business plans and projects, including an automated mortgage transaction initiative for Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.