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:

Integration Brings Automated File Imaging To Point And PointCentral

VirPack, a provider of document management, virtual workflow and eDelivery solutions for the mortgage lending industry, has a new integration with Calyx Software, a provider of innovative solutions to help streamline and simplify all phases of the loan process.

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VirPack’s Point Integration Modules enable Calyx’s customers to utilize VirPack’s virtual file automation capabilities including: multiple methods of document capture, automated document recognition and indexing (OCR), and rule-based workflow capabilities. With VirPack’s one-click electronic loan delivery, Calyx customers also gain the ability to quickly and precisely deliver loan files and data electronically to investors, HUD for FHA insuring, servicers, subservicers, QC firms and MI companies.

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McKinney, TX-based Independent Bank was one of the first Calyx customers to take advantage of the new integration module and saw immediate results. “Integrating VirPack with Calyx Point provides added efficiencies without altering processes or workflow – all within a truly paperless environment,” said Kristy Robison, Senior Vice President Mortgage Operations at Independent Bank.

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Point and PointCentral customers may also leverage VirPack’s preconfigured technology which enables rapid deployment and delivers immediate operational efficiency to the loan lifecycle.

“With mortgage origination costs continuing to rise, lenders need to leverage integrations between their technology providers to eliminate costly and time-consuming manual processes,” said Bob Dougherty, Executive Vice President of Calyx Software. “Calyx is proud to partner with VirPack to provide our customers seamless access to a solution that improves productivity and efficiency.”

“The positive reaction we have received from Point and PointCentral customers validates that our integration delivers increased productivity and efficiency without major IT and operational disruption,” said Wayland Pond, Chief Business Development Officer of VirPack. “Using best-in-class virtual document management and workflow technology will enable Calyx customers to fund more loans with the same staff and meet the competitive challenges of driving down per loan costs.”

Roostify Integrates With Salesforce

Roostify, a digital lending platform provider, has launched its Roostify connected app on Salesforce AppExchange. This new application enables mutual customers to easily connect leads generated within the Roostify suite of lead generation tools to their Salesforce environment.

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The app enables leads created in Roostify to be directly pushed to Salesforce, eliminating the need for manual entry or a lender-built integration. Lenders leveraging Roostify’s lead gen tool suite, including the DecisionBuilder lead capture tool, can now enjoy greater ease of use with the tools, streamlined workflows, and lower operational costs. Managed and maintained by Roostify, the app will remain current with all future Roostify updates without disruption to the lender’s workflows. The app can be up and running after a straightforward configuration.

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Built on the Salesforce Lightning Platform, the Roostify app is currently available to Roostify clients on the AppExchange. For more information, please contact sales@roostify.com.

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“An integration with Salesforce provides tremendous value for our customers that rely on the software for lead generation and prospecting by enabling them to easily work between the two platforms and not have to manually enter information,” said Mark McLaughlin, SVP of Business Development, Roostify. “This app will accelerate our customer’s ability to act on and convert new leads in an increasingly competitive environment.”

“We are happy to welcome Roostify onto the AppExchange, as they provide customers with an exciting new way to generate and follow up on leads,” said Mike Wolff, SVP, ISV Sales, Salesforce. “The exponential growth of the AppExchange underscores the enormous opportunity the entire Salesforce ecosystem has in creating cutting-edge solutions and driving customer success.”

Salesforce AppExchange, the world’s leading enterprise cloud marketplace, empowers companies to sell, service, market and engage in entirely new ways. With more than 5,000 solutions, 5 million customer installs and 70,000 peer reviews, it is the most comprehensive source of cloud, mobile, social, IoT, analytics and artificial intelligence technologies for businesses.

Considerations For Implementing A Digital Mortgage Solution

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If you’re ready to be a mortgage heavyhitter and find the right digital mortgage solution but you’re intimidated by the shopping process, you’re in the right place.

This Digital Mortgage Buyer’s Guide will lead you through the digital mortgage shopping process to help you find your perfect fit.

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TD Bank Makes Moves To Go Digital

TD Bank has deployed their initial rollout of the Encompass digital mortgage solution, continuing Ellie Mae’s push upmarket into the largest lenders and banks in the United States. TD Bank is leveraging Encompass to streamline origination and call center vendor integrations onto one platform, speed up deployment of new online products, and significantly reduce the bank’s loan cycle time.

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TD Bank selected the Encompass platform because of their desire to improve the customer experience by leveraging an all-in-one system that will consolidate processes on a single, efficient, and easy-to-manage ecosystem. Encompass will enhance the bank’s ability to audit in-process loans, significantly reduce time to close, deploy new products faster and without gaps in services, and increase the bank’s overall nimbleness and flexibility. In addition, customers will now be able to access their disclosures online.

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TD Bank leveraged Ellie Mae’s Professional Services Organization for the implementation of Encompass. The implementation process required consensus from stakeholders across the organization reaching far beyond Encompass users, from technology groups in the United States and Canada, to downstream data systems to feed the bank’s diverse reporting needs. Ellie Mae’s proven implementation methodology with hundreds of Enterprise-class customers enables lenders to minimize costs, lower risks and accelerate team member adoption, leading to faster ROI. Ellie Mae’s Custom Solutions experience in delivering customized integrations built on top of the Encompass platform was leveraged by TD to collaboratively build out enhancements to further improve user efficiencies.

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“We are thrilled to announce that TD Bank has officially completed its initial rollout of Encompass,” said Jonathan Corr, president and CEO of Ellie Mae. “We’ve worked together to successfully transition TD from a legacy origination system to an agile solution equipped to handle the complexities and loan volume experienced by a leading national bank. We value the opportunity to partner with TD Bank to help them grow the mortgage lending arm of their business.”

“At TD, we place a strong and steadfast emphasis on continually enhancing both the customer and employee experiences,” said Rick Bechtel, EVP, Head of U.S. Mortgage Banking, TD Bank. “By leveraging Ellie Mae’s Encompass platform, we’re able to provide our customers with a simplified process, online access to documentation, and a substantial reduction in their loan closing time, all of which will dramatically enhance the mortgage lending experience. Simultaneously, Encompass will provide our employees with tools that increase efficiency and streamline processes – a huge win for the employee experience, as well. We could not be more excited to bring TD to the forefront of digital mortgage technology, and our Encompass deployment is the first step.”

SimpleNexus Recognized As A Top 500 Company By Inc.

SimpleNexus, a provider of enterprise digital mortgage solutions, was recognized as a top 500 company by ranking No. 359 in the recently-released 2018 Inc. 5000 List.

The recognition comes at a time of tremendous growth for SimpleNexus in both revenue and customer satisfaction. The company is known primarily for their private-label digital mortgage platform and mobile app. The platform connects mortgage lenders with borrowers and real estate agents, streamlining the exchange of data and documents for all parties throughout the loan lifecycle.

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SimpleNexus has 15 of the top 25 retail mortgage lenders in the US using its enterprise digital mortgage platform. Over $100 billion in transactions have flowed through the platform, and over 450,000 borrowers have used the SimpleNexus app.

The swift adoption of digital mortgage solutions is indicative of need for this service within the mortgage industry. “We are humbled by this recognition and acknowledge the direct role our lenders’ success using the platform has played in the significant growth we have experienced as a company,” stated Matt Hansen, SimpleNexus founder & CEO.

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More and more lenders are beginning to turn to a mobile-first approach for their digital mortgage solution, and as a result, more than 18,000 Mobile Originators™ are using SimpleNexus. The platform enables loan officers to close loans more quickly, increase realtor referrals, and gain a competitive advantage.

“The data shows that using SimpleNexus, originators can close loans up to 20 percent faster,” Hansen noted. With the ability to close loans quickly and efficiently, both lenders and borrowers are eager to switch to this mobile-first mentality for their digital mortgage needs.

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SimpleNexus joins the ranks of companies such as Intuit, Zappos, Under Armour, Microsoft, Patagonia, and other household names. Inc.’s 36-year history celebrates the unprecedented growth of American organizations from a multitude of industries.

“Companies that made the list, on average, have grown sixfold since 2014,” stated James Ledbetter, Inc. Editor-In-Chief. “During a stretch when the economy grew around 11 percent, that’s a result most business can only dream of,” Ledbetter continued.

Other inductees to the 2018 rankings include Peloton, Brooklinen, and PopSockets. All inductees will be recognized at the annual Inc. 500 conference and gala, which will take place in San Antonio, Texas, from Oct.17-18.

Millennials’ View Of Home Buying Turns Negative

Millennials’ perceived value in buying a home dropped below 50 percent, down significantly from post-Brexit high, according to the latest ValueInsured quarterly Modern Homebuyer Survey:

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In the third quarter of 2018, 48 percent of all millennials believe buying a home in America today is a good investment; this is a record low, down from 54 percent in the second quarter. The previous high was 77 percent two years ago.

Fifty-eight percent of millennials now agree buying a home is the best financial decision they can make for themselves and their family, another survey low in ten quarters.

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Just over six in 10 millennials (61 percent) now believe buying a home is more beneficial than renting, again a survey low, down from a high of 83 percent two years ago.

While 76 percent of all homeowners believe now is a good time to sell a home, only 39 percent of millennials who want to become homeowners believe now is a good time to buy a home.

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The ValueInsured Housing Confidence Index for millennials registered a score of 56.9 on a hundred-point scale in Q3 2018. It is the lowest level recorded, down 1.7 points from Q2, and down 10.1 points from a year prior.

In addition to reporting a steady slide in their conviction for home buying, more millennials now associate owning with sacrifices:

Nearly one in four (23 percent) believe they need to delay having children in order to afford buying a home

Thirty-two percent do not believe they can afford a healthy and balanced diet while saving for a home at today’s high prices

Thirty-one percent seriously consider relocating to another city to afford buying

“Conventional wisdom assumed millennials were buying homes later because they chose to get married and have children later,” says Joe Melendez, CEO and founder of ValueInsured.  “New research now suggests homeownership may be the cause, not the effect, of delayed family formation. It is an alarming trend, and we see more acute evidence in expensive housing regions.”

Among millennials who are still interested and motived to become homeowners “in the near future,” their anticipation is often filled with anxiety. Among motivated first-time buyers, 49 percent are concerned rising mortgage rates could make homes currently within their budget become unaffordable later; 67 percent are concerned they will not save enough for a home they would actually like to live in; and 52 percent believe a home they buy now will likely drop in value within one year. Sixty-eight percent are concerned about another housing crisis; and 64 percent admit they will likely experience buyer’s remorse after reaching their homeownership goal.

Their trepidation could be explained by the high stakes these millennials plan to undertake. Eighty-five percent in the survey expect their home down payment to represent over half of their total personal assets.

“Most homebuyers experience a healthy amount of jitters before such a milestone purchase – that’s normal,” Melendez said. “But the new normal is highly anxious, inexperienced buyers bungee jumping in without knowing if their safety harnesses will work. That is an unhealthy, bordering on dysfunctional trend that our industry needs to mitigate to ensure we do not lose an entire generation of future homeowners.”

Technology Helps Planet Home Lending Boost Correspondent Productivity By 300%

LoanLogics, a provider of loan quality technology for mortgage manufacturing and loan acquisition, has helped increase Planet Home Lending’s correspondent division productivity by 300 percent. By using LoanLogics IDEA for indexing loans and LoanHD platforms for loan reviews, Planet Home Lending has raised the division’s monthly loan volume and reduced the time needed for loan reviews, without adding staff.

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Planet Home Lending began using LoanLogics’ technology at the beginning of 2017, and has since tripled its acquisition of correspondent loans, from roughly 300 loans per month to over 1000 loans per month. With the help of LoanLogics’ technology, Planet Home Lending also significantly reduced loan file review time from three to seven days at the beginning of 2017 to currently only 24-48 hours.

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Planet Home Lending evaluated several technology vendors for indexing and data extraction capabilities before settling on LoanLogics, according to Rob Jannotte, senior vice president, production technologies, with Planet Home Lending. “The technology from LoanLogics clearly stood above the rest in terms of indexing, but their data extraction and audit rules automation tools were far and away superior to other vendors.”

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LoanLogics IDEA (Intelligent Data Extraction and Automation) accelerates the indexing of loan files and transforms digital images, as well as scanned documents, into searchable, comparable data elements.The LoanHD platform displays these data elements as LoanFacts, enabling 100% data comparison of extracted data and loan origination system data to provide full transparency as part of the mortgage loan review process.

Planet Home Lending’s implementation of LoanLogics’ technology went very smoothly, according to Jannotte. “We were up and running in 60 days, which I attribute to the expertise and flexibility of LoanLogics staff and just the right amount of training,” he said. During the testing phase, Planet staff was able to see proof that files were being indexed correctly. They could also see the accuracy of the data extraction.

In all ways, Planet Home Lending’s expectations were far exceeded by LoanLogics’ technology. “In my 20 years of experience implementing mortgage technology, the LoanLogics collaboration is without a doubt one of the most successful technology implementations,” Jannotte said.

“The Planet Home Lending implementation and use of LoanLogics’ technology is a great success story,” said Brian Fitzpatrick, CEO of LoanLogics. “We are continually innovating and updating our technology to help mortgage lenders cut the costs and time spent on loan indexing and loan reviews, which significantly improves lenders’ productivity and ROI.”

Mortgage Companies Are Hiring For Success

In order to remain competitive and excel in the current mortgage market, mortgage lenders and technology providers are hiring high-powered executives to take their businesses to the next level. Here are some recent examples of this trend:

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Alexis Anderson, (daughter of industry tech icon Tim Anderson) was recently appointed as Director of Marketing with MortgageFlex Systems based in Jacksonville, Florida.  She will be responsible for all corporate digital marketing and PR for the firm.  She graduated Cum Laude from the School of Communications at the University of Alabama with a major in Public Relations and specific focus and studies on Digital Marketing Communications and Design.

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Also, Mortgage Network Inc., one of the largest independent mortgage lenders in the eastern U.S., is pleased to announce that Chris Horley has joined the company as manager of its new Newport, Rhode Island branch office. Horley (NMLS# 7836) brings to Mortgage Network 23 years of mortgage banking experience in the Rhode Island area. Most recently, Horley served as a senior loan officer for Citizens Bank. He is a lifetime Rhode Island resident and has lived the past three years in Newport. He is an active affiliate member of the Newport County Board of Realtors and the Newport Chamber of Commerce.

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Roostify, a digital lending platform provider, announced that Eric Amblard has joined the company as Chief Financial Officer. Amblard comes to Roostify from EverString Technologies, where he also served as CFO. “Roostify has undergone considerable recent growth, including a funding round and continued push into enterprise accounts,” said Rajesh Bhat, CEO, Roostify. “Eric’s extensive financial and operational experience with growth-stage enterprise SaaS companies will be a great asset to the leadership team as Roostify continues to scale. Eric will also manage the company’s internal regulator, compliance and contract teams. Eric has already brought a great energy into the role and we are extremely excited to have him on board.” Amblard comes to Roostify with over a decade of broad operating experience scaling B2B SaaS companies.

Lastly, LERETA, LLC, a national provider of real estate tax and flood services for mortgage servicers, has selected Rick Holcomb as senior vice president of its tax outsourcing operations. In his new position, Holcomb oversees LERETA’s tax outsourcing, call center and customer care teams. Holcomb comes to LERETA with more than 25 years of experience focusing on all facets of servicing, insurance and tax with a core emphasis on strategic planning, customer relationships, process improvement and operational management. “LERETA has invested significantly in technology and integrated solutions focused on transforming the tax service industry,” said Jim Micali, COO at LERETA. “Adding Rick will enhance our leadership team, and his overall industry experience also brings significant value to our current and future clients.” Most recently, Holcomb was vice president of operations at CoreLogic. He began his tax service career at First American Real Estate Tax Service and had increasing responsibilities throughout the operational departments. He also worked for Midland Mortgage, a division of MidFirst Bank in Oklahoma.

Lenders One Names Michael Kuentz CEO

Lenders One Cooperative, a national alliance of independent  mortgage bankers, announced that Michael Kuentz has been promoted to the role of Chief Executive Officer of Lenders One by its Board of Directors. Mr. Kuentz previously held the title of President. In his new role, he will assume responsibility for Lenders One’s day-to-day operations and strategic execution as well as continue to lead and manage the cooperative’s sales effort.

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“Michael and I have worked closely over these past two years and I could not be more pleased with his promotion,” said Bryan Binder, Lenders One’s outgoing CEO. “The state of our cooperative is extremely strong, and our value proposition and opportunity set are both as attractive as they have been in many years. This strength combined with our incredibly talented management team gives me great confidence that the future of the cooperative has never been brighter and the timing is right for Michael to take the helm.”

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“As independent mortgage bankers in today’s environment, it is essential to come together, collaborate on innovation, share resources and reduce expenses,” added . “of independent mortgage bankers and the market leader in innovation, Lenders One is always looking for new ways to deliver value to our members. I am highly confident that Michael will continue to be a strong leader both for Lenders One and across the mortgage industry.”

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Mr. Kuentz has 20 years of sales and management experience in the mortgage industry and, since joining the cooperative two years ago, has led the Lenders One sales team. During this period, Lenders One has seen exceptional growth, and Mr. Kuentz has played an integral role in helping to deliver creative solutions for the cooperative’s members, preferred vendors and investors.

Prior to joining Lenders One, Mr. Kuentz served in senior roles for Equifax, Inc. (NYSE: EFX), including Senior Vice President of Verification Services and Senior Vice President of Mortgage Services. Mr. Kuentz joined Equifax in 2001 as part of its acquisition of Rapid Reporting where he was a partner.

Millennial Home Purchases Continue To Rise

Mortgages to Millennial borrowers for new home purchases continued their ascent in June, accounting for 91 percent of closed loans, according to the latest Ellie Mae Millennial Tracker report. In May, 90 percent of closed mortgages to members of the generation were for new home purchases, up from April’s 89 percent, and January’s annual low of 81 percent. This is in correlation with the Census Bureau’s latest quarterly homeownership and vacancy report that shows homeownership across Millennials age 35 and younger increased slightly, representing 36.5 percent of all homeowners, compared to 35.3 percent in the first quarter of 2018.

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Conventional loans remained attractive among Millennials, representing 69 percent of all loans closed in June, a slight uptick from 68 percent in May. FHA loans represented 27 percent of all closed loans to this generation, down one percentage point from the month prior. This is significantly higher than the Ellie Mae June Origination Insight Report data which showed FHA loans represented 20 percent of closed loans in the month for borrowers of all ages.

Average Millennial borrower FICO scores across all loan types rose slightly in June to an average of 723, up from 721 which held steady March through May. For purchases, the average FICO score was 746 for a conventional loan, 681 for an FHA loan and 744 for a VA loan.

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“As it remains a competitive, purchase-centric market, we will continue to keep a close eye on the purchase trends amongst Millennials,” said Joe Tyrrell, Ellie Mae’s executive vice president of corporate strategy. “This new generation of homebuyers wants the capability of an on-demand mortgage, and we are working to provide borrowers a convenient and secure digital mortgage offering that makes the homebuying process a seamless experience.”

Across all loan types, it took Millennials an average of 42 days to close on their loans in June, a day longer than in March, April and May. Purchases took an average of 41 days and refinances took an average of 45 days.

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In June, the hottest housing markets for Millennials were primarily in the Midwest. The top markets by percentage of Millennial loans closed included Clarksburg, W.Va. (65 percent), Watertown, S.D. (65 percent), Boone, Iowa (64 percent), and Dickinson, N.D. (61 percent).

The Ellie Mae Millennial Tracker is an interactive online tool that provides access to up-to-date demographic data about this new generation of homebuyers. It mines data from a robust sampling of approximately 80 percent of all closed mortgages dating back to 2014 that were initiated on Ellie Mae’s Encompass mortgage management solution.