We’re not necessarily looking to break technology news, but we are looking to put it all into greater context for you. Right now we’re hearing:

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Supreme Lending Expands Its Southwest Presence

Supreme Lending, a nationwide mortgage lender, has expanded its Southwest territory with an additional branch in the Denver, Colorado market. Industry veteran Carlos Ruiz (NMLS #389289) has been selected to manage the branch. The new Denver branch services borrowers throughout the state of Colorado, and has plans to expand into California and New Jersey this year.

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Ruiz has been in the mortgage industry for 25 years and has strong knowledge of the full range of government, conventional, non-conforming and jumbo mortgage products. Throughout his two and a half decades in the industry, Ruiz has built a reputation for easy accessibility and strong product knowledge.

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“I love getting my clients the best deal possible,” said Ruiz. “My job is to help borrowers choose the best loan program based on their unique needs, goals and financial situations—that includes interest rates, but it also includes much more. If a loan officer is looking strictly at rates, he’s probably doing his borrower a huge disservice.”

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Ruiz prefers to stay involved throughout the mortgage process, and personally manages each loan that he originates. He also stays accessible via telephone to his borrowers, even after hours.

“I review each file weekly to stay on top of any changes, because even small changes can impact the rate or terms of a loan,” he said. “After having closed over 10,000 loans, I’ve learned how to get my clients the best rate possible. Each of my clients benefits from the thousands of others that came before them.”

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Embrace Home Loans Sponsors Charity Event

Embrace Home Loans is sponsoring the 5th Annual PinkTie.Org 2017 event on Monday, May 22, at The Crest Hollow Country Club in Woodbury, NY. Embrace Home Loans’ Hauppauge, NY branch has committed to being a Silver Sponsor for the event. Proceeds will benefit the Don Monti Memorial Research Foundation, a premier organization dedicated to eradicating cancer through research, fellowship and education.

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Since 2012, PinkTie.Org – Business Professionals Networking for a Cure, has united Long Islanders in the fight against cancer and other diseases affecting families throughout the community. The annual event held each May continues to make a positive impact on the community and has become the backbone of Long Island’s philanthropy movement.

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“At Embrace Home Loans, we are devoted to supporting our local community,” said Embrace Home Loans’ Hauppauge branch manager, Bryan Smith. “We chose to support PinkTie.Org because of the significant impact they have on the Long Island community helping to fight against diseases that disproportionately affect our loved ones. We are honored to sponsor this year’s event, and to further enrich our philanthropic company culture and our commitment to helping others in our communities.”

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Mike Cave, who founded the charitable organization, was grateful and appreciative for the mortgage lender’s tradition of giving. “We are very excited to welcome Embrace Home Loans into the PinkTie.Org family, and we thank them for their support and generosity as Silver Sponsors of the 5th Annual PinkTie.Org Event,” said Cave. “They are true Go-Givers!”

The event anticipates more than 3,000 guests with an evening of networking, raffle prizes and more in a first-time-ever partnership with Scott and Jaclyn Stapp’s Charm Foundation Inc. Guests will also enjoy an exciting live performance by Scott Stapp, the Voice of Creed.

Embrace employees have helped support local families in need, school supply drives, the families of active military members, and friends and families of Embrace employees, who have had sudden emergencies such as a medical crisis, to name just a few. Embrace has raised thousands of dollars through their tradition of giving and dedication to helping others.

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National MI To Host Mortgage Leadership Roundtable

Industry experts will gather to discuss the current state of the mortgage industry at the New England Mortgage Leadership Roundtable on June 14, 2017 at the Granite Links Golf Course in Quincy, MA. The free event is being hosted by National MI, a subsidiary of NMI Holdings, Inc. (Nasdaq: NMIH) a California-based private mortgage insurer, along with ISGN Solutions, a leading business process management (BPM) company to the mortgage industry.

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Sam Luna, the Single Family Affordable Lending director at Freddie Mac, will discuss Freddie Mac’s Home Possible® program.  Julie Jones, credit risk analyst at Fannie Mae, will give an update on Fannie Mae’s efforts to facilitate more efficient programs for lenders, while also improving quality of originations.

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Also presenting will be Allan Weiss, CEO of Weiss Residential Research, LLC, a publisher of next-generation home price analytics.  Weiss’ keynote presentation, “New Approaches to Home Price Risk,” will address best practices for managing risk. Weiss is the co-founder and former CEO of Case-Shiller Weiss, which produces the S&P/Case-Schiller Home Price Index, a leading U.S. housing market index used by economists and analysts.

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Cultural Outreach Solutions Founder Kristin Messerli will offer advice and tips on how lenders can reach currently untapped markets.  Cultural Outreach Solutions specializes in helping companies in the mortgage industry better reach and serve multicultural and millennial homebuyers.

Other speakers  include Gene O’Bryan, CEO of Solutions Lending Services, who will address market innovation opportunities, and Dana Wasson, vice president of Consulting and Professional Service at ISGN Solutions, who will discuss how to prepare for CFPB and FHA enforcement.

“Our ongoing series of mortgage leadership roundtables has attracted a good deal of interest,” said Jason Kitch, regional managing director of the Northeast Region for National MI. “National MI is pleased to host this event in the Boston area, particularly with such an excellent line-up of speakers.”

Details of the New England Mortgage Leadership Roundtable are as follows:

Location: Granite Links Golf Course, 100 Quarry Hills Dr., Quincy, MA

Date: Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Time: 9:00 a.m. – 3:30 p.m. Eastern

To register for the roundtable, contact Tracy Berry at tracy.berry@nationalmi.com.

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Optimal Blue Partners With Leading CRM Player

Optimal Blue has partnered with Media Center CRM to offer a seamless and powerful prospecting tool that can be used by both mortgage professionals and their Realtor partners. Here’s why this is significant:

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The Optimal Blue/Media Center CRM partnership is a logical and timely collaboration. Borrowers and homebuyers need access to real-time pricing information to make informed decisions; which is an unparalleled strength of Optimal Blue’s technology. Likewise, mortgage professionals need a vehicle to provide this information to their customers and Realtor partners in a consistent and compelling format, and that is where Media Center CRM shines.

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“As a premier marketing CRM provider, it’s imperative that we remain at the forefront of emerging technologies,” said Dan Harrington, CEO of Media Center CRM. “Though we generally build our own system enhancements, there are instances where the smartest thing to do is partner with a firm that has the experience and is the technology leader in their space, so that our customers can enjoy the benefits of our individual strengths. Our partnership with Optimal Blue is a perfect example of that.”

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“Borrowers are demanding a more streamlined and simplified experience in every aspect of their lives, and dynamics of the mortgage process is no exception,” said Bob Brandt, Vice President of Marketing & Alliances, Optimal Blue. “Well-designed integrations between leading technology partners is the fastest and most efficient way to bring the best-of-the-best directly to the consumer.”

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ValuAmerica Expands Its Integration With LendingQB

ValuAmerica, a wholly owned subsidiary of Clayton Holdings LLC, and national provider of appraisal, title, closing and settlement services, announced today that it has enhanced its integration with LendingQB, a provider of lean lending loan origination technology solutions, and is now providing title services to LendingQB customers.

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Earlier this year, ValuAmerica announced the initial phase of the integration which provided LendingQB customers access to ValuAmerica’s full suite of appraisal services. The integration has now been expanded to give LendingQB customers a more streamlined workflow to order title services.

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“ValuAmerica and our sister company, Radian Guaranty, are dedicated to providing the best possible customer experience. The latest update to our integration with LendingQB allows loan officers to order valuations, title products and private mortgage insurance without having to leave their loan origination system (LOS), ultimately creating a more efficient loan origination process.” said Shawn Murphy, executive vice president of ValuAmerica.

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“ValuAmerica’s mortgage products provide access to a wealth of resources that streamlines processes for lenders,” said Tim Nguyen, president, LendingQB. “By now having a full suite of title and appraisal services within our LOS, lenders can save during the origination process. Our continued relationship with ValuAmerica and Radian Guaranty validates how the importance of companies aligning their technologies in order to provide the best experience possible for lenders.”

ValuAmerica, Inc. is wholly owned by Clayton Holdings LLC, a subsidiary of Radian Group Inc., and is a provider of real estate information and technology services to the mortgage and real estate industries. The company provides a suite of appraisal, title, closing, and settlement services as well as develops technology to help automate workflow and compliance processes.

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Pendo Launches Automated USPAP Standard 3 Compliance Tool

Pendo, a nationwide appraisal management company (AMC), has launched an automated USPAP (Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice) Standard 3 compliance tool to add to their list of proprietary technology solutions for appraisal management. The company has also developed an appraiser recruiting tool that helps its dedicated client success team find, track and engage appraisers for traditionally difficult assignments involving unique properties, or properties in high demand or sparsely populated areas.

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USPAP Standard 3 “establishes requirements for development and reporting of an appraisal review assignment involving a real property or personal property appraisal,” according to the Appraisal Institute. Pendo’s proprietary USPAP Standard 3 review tool manages the appraisal review requirements set by each state. It allows the appraiser to look at the original appraisal, along with the review form and supporting market data, all in one view. The tool also tracks the number of appraisals Pendo has completed in each state and notifies Pendo when it is time to complete more reviews to meet the state AMC requirements. Housing the reviews and having access to necessary reporting within the tool satisfies the requirements for each state while automating the process and ensuring each appraisal is compliant.

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Pendo’s quality and compliance efforts center on a configurable proprietary technology that allows each client to customize its quality control process according to its own unique requirements. “If lenders want to achieve the highest quality and compliance, they need to have performance-based metrics to review, analyze and make adjustments as needed,” said Jeff Sandman, co-founder of Pendo. “We give our clients the metrics to make informed decisions, and we’ll be doing a lot more in the future.”

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To lead its quality and compliance efforts, the company recently hired Molly Hoskins, certified appraiser, as vice president of quality and compliance. This position and a continued focus on technology are part of the company’s disruption-based growth plan, which includes using advanced technology and other dedicated resources to elevate quality, compliance and service levels far above current industry standards.

The newly hired Ms. Hoskins will lead the company’s quality and compliance program, which includes growing Pendo’s use of proprietary technologies and metrics that not only assure appraisal quality and compliance, but also elevate client engagement.

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Altisource Launches Enhanced Vendor Oversight Platform

Altisource Portfolio Solutions has expanded its Vendorly platform. The platform launched last year exclusively for members of the Lenders One Cooperative, a national alliance of independent mortgage bankers, and is now available to the broader mortgage and community bankers market outside of the Lenders One network. The Vendorly platform is designed to help streamline vendor due diligence, document maintenance, monitoring and audits.

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The scrutiny of vendor oversight practices continues to be a focus of regulators. It’s important for mortgage and community bankers to have a multifaceted vendor oversight program. Through the Vendorly platform, and its vendor oversight offerings, Vendorly can help strengthen its customers’ compliance management framework and increase their operational efficiencies. Vendorly offers managed vendor oversight services, including due diligence, document management, annual assessments, information security assessments, financial condition reviews and on-site audits.

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Vendorly is announcing collaboration with Secure Insight, an innovator in the mortgage industry in providing settlement agent risk evaluation, rating, monitoring and database reporting on fully vetted mortgage closing professionals. Currently servicing close to 100 clients nationwide, Secure Insight will deliver real-time risk ratings and related settlement agent data to clients through the Vendorly platform. Together, Secure Insight and Vendorly intend to develop a platform that produces a transaction-based tool with risk data on each transaction prior to a closing (and just before the proceeds are wired). It is expected that this process will provide data in a more efficient, streamlined manner and give lenders greater comfort in the protection of their money, documents and consumer data at each closing.

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“Our relationship with Secure Insight allows us to leverage their deep expertise in settlement agent oversight and industry-leading database of over 50,000 vetted and rated agents, which has been a decade in the making,” said Jim Vaca, vice president, Vendorly. “With Vendorly, we’ve developed an easy-to-use platform for delivering stronger vendor management across all vendor types. Since our initial launch, we’ve provided our Vendorly solution to more than 50 customers, whose direct feedback helped shape the technology we are offering today.  Leveraging Altisource’s technology and industry expertise has enabled us to help bring efficiency to our clients’ vendor management processes.”

“We have always recognized that lenders are seeking a complete solution for vendor management, one that encompasses the different areas of risk and the various vendors that make up the universe of third parties with whom lenders conduct business,” said Andrew Liput, president and chief executive officer, Secure Insight. “We are excited to combine our specific expertise in settlement agent oversight with Vendorly’s oversight services, uniting our efforts to develop an integrated solution that will deliver our risk data on a transaction basis for greater loan efficiency and operational security at the closing table.”

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Clayton Launches Internal Audit Services Program

Clayton Holdings has developed an enhanced internal audit services program. The program is designed to help bank and lender clients develop, manage and enhance their internal risks and controls programs and comply with new government-sponsored enterprise (GSE) and Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) requirements.

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Offered by Clayton’s consulting divisionthe program leverages the company’s in-depth industry knowledge and combines it with seasoned professionals to deliver operational efficiencies. The program strengthens internal audit activities in several areas, including:

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>>Risk assessment design/performance

>>Turnkey development of internal audit functions

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>>Internal audit process reviews/enhancement

>>Remediation of gaps in existing audit programs

“The GSEs, investors, corporate boards and regulators are all focusing on the importance of managing internal risks and controls,” said Jeff Tennyson, president of Clayton. “Fannie Mae now requires seller/servicers to have internal audit and management control processes, and the CFPB is mandating and examining for Compliance Management Systems. Our new offering helps clients identify gaps and inadequacies in existing functions before GSE and regulatory reviews and to design and build stronger processes. Depending on the client’s need, our role can range from reviews to training and from problem remediation to turnkey audit process development.”

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Integration Gives Buyers More Information

ATTOM Data Solutions and Auction.com have expanded their strategic partnership that makes Home Disclosure Reports powered by ATTOM Data Solutions available for properties nationwide posted for sale on Auction.com.

Available on nearly 120 million U.S. properties, Home Disclosure Reports provide information in more than 42 categories, including neighborhood, school, crime and environmental data. Additionally, Home Disclosure Reports are able to pull in-depth public record property profiles that consist of ownership details, loan position, equity, sales history, building permits and property tax information.

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“As the premier disposition company in the market, our mission and focus are to create the most dynamic and trusted real estate market place for buying and selling Foreclosure Sales and Bank-owned properties,” said Jason Allnutt, general manager for Auction.com. “The addition of ATTOM-powered Home Disclosure Reports provides our customers with greater insights and data to help them make more informed and educated decisions.”

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Beginning in January 2017, Auction.com made the Home Disclosure Reports available for select properties following a limited-access trial period. As a result, the number of Home Disclosure reports downloaded by Auction.com customers doubled between January and March. Based on positive user experience during the trial period, Auction.com will continue to make ATTOM’s Home Disclosure Reports available moving forward.

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“The comprehensive and intuitive Home Disclosure Reports are empowering buyers, investors and sellers navigating Auction.com with crucial information they need to know about a property and its neighborhood before completing an online transaction,” said Rob Barber, chief executive officer at ATTOM Data Solutions. “The reports synthesize a myriad of data points from hundreds of disparate data sources into an organized and user-friendly format designed to convey the key details to consumers quickly and clearly. These reports will help further the common mission of ATTOM and Auction.com to make real estate transparent.”

“Home Disclosure Reports provide an added value into listed properties that buyers appreciate,” said Colleen Lambros, chief marketing officer for Auction.com. “It is our goal to ensure that buyers have access into insights that allow them to bid with confidence.”

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Churchill Mortgage Educates High School Students

In recognition of Financial Literacy Month and as part of its commitment to financial health and education, Churchill Mortgage is providing four high schools with Ramsey Solutions’ Foundations in Personal Finance, a full curriculum that teaches students how to manage their finances and build wealth to achieve a sound financial future.

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The high schools include: Brentwood High School (Brentwood, Tenn.), Greenwood High School (Greenwood, S.C.), Pine Creek High School (Colorado Springs, Colo.) and South Ridge High School (Beaverton, Ore.).

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According to the Council for Economic Education, only five states require high school students to complete a standalone semester personal finance course before they graduate, illustrating a greater need for financial literacy initiatives. A survey of more than 76,000 high school students (conducted by Ramsey Solutions) shows that high schoolers who take personal finance courses have a greater understanding of financial concepts, such as:

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>>The differences between credit and debit cards (86%);

>>How to pay income taxes (87%)

>>How home, auto and life insurance work (90%)

>>How student loans work (94%)

Launched in 2008 by financial expert Dave Ramsey, Foundations in Personal Finance is taught in one-in-three high schools nationwide and educates students on avoiding debt, budgeting with intention and investing and building wealth. The curriculum is an easy-to-use, turn-key program that meets education standards and benchmarks in all fifty states and Jump$tart national standards. More than three million students have taken Foundations in Personal Finance curriculum nationwide.

“When established early in life, healthy financial habits can make a monumental difference in quality of life. These habits would not be possible without powerful educational resources like Ramsey Solutions’ Foundations in Personal Finance curriculum and nationwide initiatives like Financial Literacy Month,” said Mike Hardwick, president of Churchill Mortgage. “At Churchill, we’re dedicated to educating and helping people achieve financial freedom with the heart of a teacher. Providing this curriculum to these schools is our way of giving back and for these students, it is the first and most important step to building a strong financial foundation.”

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