Servicers, non-bank servicers, investors and private capital groups are all struggling to reimagine the way they process insurance claims. There is a need for speed and quality with the caveat to be cost effective. As a result, many of these organizations are looking to outsource their needs to specialized vendors.
By using a service-oriented business model, vendors are able to accomplish a faster processing timeline at a lower cost than mortgage servicers, which pleads the case that servicers should look to experienced vendors with knowledgeable, industry seasoned staff. Not only do vendors understand the intricacies of processing various claims, but they have the skills to handle a diverse range of customers and their evolving needs. In addition, vendors can build on a service-oriented model by forming partnerships with property preservation companies and major insurance carriers to streamline the claims management process.
In order to process claims faster than the industry norm, a vendor must incorporate data-specialized, Federal Housing Administration (FHA) reporting into their timeline management. This reporting allows vendors to reduce expenses for customers while ensuring that investor obligations are fulfilled. The focus should always be on the largest recovery possible while maintaining insurer standards and investor/servicer timelines.
The filing of claims can be streamlined and improved with the use of innovative technology to automate the process. There is now technology available that is capable of client specified reporting and other various communications options for customers. As we continue to move in a direction where problems are solved at the click of a mouse, it is vital that vendors embrace and utilize the evolution of automation. Technology will improve the client-vendor interface to be more interactive, streamlining communications as well as allowing vendors to trigger recoverable depreciation claims on FHA properties.
A never changing paradigm in the industry is that of compliance, which is especially important when looking for new ways to speed up processes and save customers money. The risk mitigation component of the claims process is too often overlooked by all parties. Whether it is the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC), Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) or another regulatory body, compliance now requires teamwork between servicers and vendors. By proactively preparing for audits, companies can shorten the actual audit process, therefore saving both time and money for themselves and their clients. It is imperative that both vendors and servicers understand new regulations as they are released, so as to address them preemptively before they become an audit finding.
As servicers choose among various vendors for the processing of insurance claims, it is important that they make informed decisions based on the right fit for their needs. The vendor that improves the claims filing process by increasing speed and decreasing cost is one that uses a service-oriented approach, innovative technology and compliance expertise. When a servicer selects a vendor with these tools, they gain the ability to work effectively with their vendor and will receive the most optimal results.
About The Author
Tom Stover is the senior director of solutions development of Dallas-based DIMONT, provider of specialty insurance and loan administration services for the housing industry. Additional information is available at www.dimont.com.