Enhancement Enables Lenders To Streamline Reviews Of All Fannie Mae Loans

LoanLogics has updated its LoanHD Loan Quality Management platform to make it easy for lenders to run automated checks to validate data prior to loan delivery through Fannie Mae’s EarlyCheck application on loans sold to Fannie Mae. 

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As an approved Fannie Mae technology vendor, LoanLogics has built a seamless interface to Fannie Mae’s EarlyCheck application that enables lenders to run EarlyCheck during the audit process, view the warnings and edits in the response, and correct loan data errors in the loan file. This new integration helps to assure all loan data is accurate and complete when delivered to Fannie Mae.  

The integration is a single-click delivery of the relevant file information to Fannie Mae via LoanLogics’ AppQ Network™. The results are delivered back in real time, allowing immediate feedback to the auditor. EarlyCheck may be run as many times as necessary and the entire history of results are visible from within the audit platform. 

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“Our EarlyCheck integration allows our clients to ensure every loan file has the right data points in the right place before delivery to Fannie Mae,” said Don Smith, LoanHD Product Manager. “Only by automating quality control checks can lenders improve loan quality, ensure data accuracy, and reduce the amount of time and money spent in the process.”  

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The LoanHD Loan Quality Management platform includes a LoanFacts tool, which displays the accuracy of all data elements in loan files destined to be sold to Fannie Mae. A unique feature of LoanHD, LoanFacts is a dashboard that provides underwriters with a direct link to the underlying data within loan documents that automatically validates every datapoint across all documents in the loan file against a single reference document.

Increase Monthly Loan Volume Through Advanced Automation

PenFed, one of the nation’s largest credit unions, has selected LoanLogics’ LoanHD platform to accelerate loan quality reviews and loan file deliveries to investors. LoanHD enables real-time, highly automated mortgage quality assurance and control that improves productivity compared to manual internal audits and third-party audit services.

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PenFed, a federal credit union with 1.7 million members and $23.5 billion in assets, chose LoanLogics to help them increase their capacity for growth in their correspondent lending business, according to Ben Sizemore, PenFed’s senior vice president of mortgage transformation. By automating a substantial number of tasks and streamlining loan deliveries, Sizemore expects LoanHD will enable a significant expansion of the credit union’s monthly loan volume as their business grows.

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“PenFed has always been committed to using technology to operate more efficiently, which makes LoanLogics the perfect partner to scale our mortgage business,” Sizemore said. “We anticipate LoanHD will enable us to increase our loan throughput by automating processes and continue to deliver our loan document packages to meet investor and regulatory requirements,” he said. “LoanHD also meets our standards for robust quality controls that enable us to lower operating costs.”

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LoanHD automatically harvests data from loan documents and third-party sources and automates virtually every quality control task, providing a “red light, green light” approach to loan manufacturing and acquisition that reduces the cost of compliance at every stage. It includes a library of customizable business rules and checklist-driven auditing processes that encompass pre-underwriting, pre-funding and post closing reviews, due diligence and loan boarding as well as specialized audits for HMDA, TRID and other regulatory and agency requirements.

Sizemore said LoanLogics’ reputation as a regtech leader in the mortgage industry made the decision to choose LoanHD easy. “The company’s superior technology and expertise allow us to quickly and simply enhance automation for our correspondent and third party channels, increasing our efficiency for the delivery of high quality services for our members.”

“We’re honored to be working with the team at PenFed to grow its mortgage volume,” said LoanLogics CEO, Brian Fitzpatrick. “By verifying and validating loan data prior to loan review, regtech solutions like LoanHD can significantly automate audit tasks and lower costs which deliver huge benefit to credit unions and their members. We look forward to helping PenFed gain greater efficiencies and control loan quality for years to come.”

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Automating Loan Acquisition For Correspondent Lenders

LoanLogics and Optimal Blue have formed a strategic partnership aimed at changing the digital correspondent experience. By delivering a real-time integration between LoanLogics’ LoanHD Correspondent Lending platform and Optimal Blue’s product eligibility and pricing platform, the companies significantly advance the automation of correspondent loan transactions and create a compelling competitive advantage for clients of both firms. In conjunction with this partnership, Optimal Blue has acquired LoanLogics’ product, pricing, and eligibility (PPE) technology business, LoanDecisions.

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LoanLogics’ LoanHD platform provides automation for every step in the loan acquisition process – from initial seller application review to loan funding and servicing onboarding – and overcomes the challenges that stem from a traditionally manual and fragmented correspondent loan purchase workflow. With the capabilities of LoanHD, investors ensure the loans they are buying are high quality, compliant, and accurately priced, while sellers experience rapid turnaround for funding and enhanced availability of warehouse lines. Additionally, both parties gain value by finding and curing defects before loans are purchased.

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Through real-time integration with Optimal Blue’s product eligibility and pricing platform, LoanLogics fully automates loan-level pricing and eligibility controls that are pervasive throughout loan file review and enhances a critical aspect of the correspondent workflow inside the LoanHD Correspondent Investor Module. The granular feature set of the Optimal Blue solution will drive greater configurability of the LoanHD platform, bringing new and unique capabilities to clients. Additionally, Optimal Blue will provide support for automated adjustments to loan- and bulk-level pricing based on automated due diligence results, while simultaneously delivering maximum flexibility in support of an investor’s secondary guidelines and pricing requirements.

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“Working closely with the Optimal Blue team, we will expand the value each company can offer our respective clients through an integrated solution,” explained Brian Fitzpatrick, LoanLogics CEO. “Individually, we are leaders in our respective disciplines. Together, we offer powerful technology to help investors ‘automate first’ across their loan purchase, pricing, hedging, trading, and counterparty risk oversight practices.”

“We are delighted with this transaction and extend a warm welcome to LoanDecisions’ customers and staff,” said Scott Happ, Optimal Blue CEO. “We are investing deeply in our PPE technology and are committed to delivering the best-in-class solutions and innovative partner connections across our marketplace.”

LoanLogics and Optimal Blue share a long-term vision for the relationship and consider this the first step of many together. With a collective focus on providing innovative automation for the mortgage industry and compelling value for joint customers, additional strategic initiatives and collaborative integrations across the companies’ respective technology platforms are already being considered.

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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.”

Market Volatility On The Way?

“This year is shaping up as a year of volatility for the residential mortgage industry, with originations plunging as interest rates rise in response to $1 trillion reductions in asset purchases by central banks,” says industry analyst and blogger Les Parker, CMB, who is senior vice president of industry relations and consulting at LoanLogics.

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“2018 just may look like 1994 to mortgage bankers,” says Parker, referring to the year following the first great mortgage refinance boom, when originations dropped sharply after interest rates rose, prompting many lenders to close or consolidate with stronger partners. “With the anticipated drop in originations and the scramble to keep market share, the resulting margin collapse and liquidity problems will lead to more industry consolidation and insolvencies,” Parker forecasts in his MarketLogics newsletter. “Non-depository mortgage bankers lack liquidity; when interest rates move outside of expected ranges, volatility expands and cash demands rise.”

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“Mortgage servicing rights, already under distress, will discover a lower nadir due to too many sellers and too few buyers,” Parker adds. However, he notes, that will eventually provide a buying opportunity for some savvy investors. “Some of the new MSR investors will step up and buy at very good levels,” he adds.

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But higher interest rates won’t be the only problem mortgage companies will face this year, Parker warns. “When volatility expands, the regulatory burdens of Dodd Frank, Basel III and other local, state, federal and international laws and rules will bring about unintended consequences of dislocation and illiquidity,” he says.

Parker manages LoanLogics’ life of loan analytics and monitoring capabilities and oversees its consulting services. He is also a contributor to the company’s strategic planning team and communicates with industry leaders to develop and maintain positive relationships.

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Lenders Can Cash In

It’s not all gloom and doom. Sure, lenders face plummeting profitability levels from falling refinances, rising origination costs and increased competition. However, cost management strategies can be employed to reduce expenses.

“Everybody is trying to reduce hands-on time,” said Jim Pippin, Director of Product Development at National MI. “They are trying to do electronic feeds so there are not as many manual imports. You also need to find specialty vendors to handle certain tasks that they specialize in.

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“In this market, leads falling out of the pipeline is especially costly. There is a lot of money spent there and when the lead doesn’t close because the prospect is always shopping, that costs the lender a lot.”

Jim Pippin is director of product development at National Mortgage Insurance Corporation (National MI), a subsidiary of NMI Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: NMIH). National MI is a private mortgage insurer based in Emeryville, CA. Pippin is involved in all facets of product development and launch, including design, pricing, operations and sales training. Prior to National MI, Pippin held senior positions at Genworth, Bank of America, Capital One and General Electric, where he earned a Six Sigma Black Belt. He holds a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from North Carolina State and an MBA in Business Administration from Wake Forest University.

He sees Quicken as an example of a lender that does a great job managing cost. “Quicken runs a very tight shop. They don’t have many errors. They use technology to manage their process and all the lenders are trying to compete with them.

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“When lenders introduce technology they just duplicate their existing process instead of changing the process or eliminating steps. Lenders have to be careful to grab technology that will genuinely help their business,” noted Pippin.

So, where are the biggest pockets of inefficiency for lenders and how can they address these areas? “We have a lender that had 5 to 6 different checklists that had to be completed manually. We came in, used technology and automated 90% of that work,” said Matt Woolley, SVP of Sales at LoanLogics.

“The rise in cost is in correlation to the amount of regulation. We are getting close to $10,000 to originate a loan. These rules have brought on new processes that are very manual and cost consuming. Lenders need to trust technology.”

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Woolley leads the National Sales team and is responsible for establishing and executing LoanLogics sales strategies and managing the sales team activities related to the all LoanLogics products, including the mortgage industry’s first Enterprise Loan Quality Management and Performance Analytics platform. He has held a variety of positions in sales and management in the mortgage technology and financial services industries with clients ranging from Government agencies, top 5 lenders, MI companies, as well as lenders, banks, and credit unions of all sizes across the country.

He warns that while technology can help lenders reduce cost, they have to be smart about their technology decisions. “Lenders need to avoid the shinny object syndrome. Lenders shouldn’t get caught because not every technology can provide the level of efficiency promised. Second, you have to have the right culture. If you are trying to hold on to old manual processes you won’t succeed. You have to be open to technology and process change.”

The company recently introduced HMDA Audit, a new module for the company’s LoanHD Loan Quality Management platform that helps lenders comply with current and new reporting requirements under the Home Mortgage Disclosure Act (HMDA) taking effect January 2018.

Under HMDA, lenders must collect and report demographic and geolocation data for all mortgage transactions and pre-approvals, whether the loans were funded or not. HMDA Audit helps lenders ensure that all HMDA data associated with originated and non-originated loans is accurate and validated for compliance. It also provides lenders with a comprehensive audit trail, which can be readily accessed for use with regulators.

Patrick Kelly, EVP, National Sales at Informative Research, advises lenders to embrace as many fixed-cost solutions as possible. “There are tools that can drive the beginning process to help you qualify borrowers. You also want fixed pricing strategies for things like 4506-T, etc. You want to move to a fixed cost model so you don’t have wasteful spend.

“For example, there are pricing strategies that can be used. You need to track the borrowers that will stick and not just every borrower. In addition, lenders can form closer relationships with builders and others. Lenders often buy technology that they don’t use or it doesn’t fit into their revenue model,” added Kelly.

With over 45 years of experience in the mortgage industry, Kelly’s expertise covers all aspects of the mortgage industry and process, from appraisal and operations to loan production and support. Having been with Informative Research for over three years, he’s played a critical role in building and managing their current national sales team.

And going forward, Kelly doesn’t see lending getting much more affordable unless lenders do a better job automating. “The Bureaus will continue to raise their price for credit and the other sources will raise their prices, as well. If you can use technology to automate these services you can save some money, but I think you need a lot to happen before you’ll see overall cost go down.”

“If people get more comfortable with the regulation, things will calm down,” added Jim Pippin of National MI. “Some lenders have the checker checking the checker right now. Also, lenders will get more comfortable automating as times goes by. It will happen.”

“Rules-based technology will reduce cost,” concluded Matt Wooley of LoanLogics. “Through automation underwiters can do eight or more loans a day. There is an opportunity for the cost to originate a loan to come down, but there are still a large number of lenders that are not willing to change how they do things and really automate. Some have been burned by failed implementations, but until they embrace automation and process change the cost to originate will increase.”

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Cary Burch Joins LoanLogics Board

LoanLogics, a provider of loan quality management and performance analytics, announced that Cary Burch has joined the company’s board of directors. A veteran of several national financial services and information technology companies, Burch will leverage his two decades of experience in the IT, legal and financial services industries to help LoanLogics expand its products and achieve long-term growth.

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Most recently, Burch served as chief innovation officer with Thomson Reuters, a multi-billion dollar global information solutions company. His previous roles include CEO of Lender Support Systems (LSSI), a mortgage technology provider; COO of Fidelity National Information Services; and CIO of First American’s Consumer Information Group and president of First American CreditNet. Earlier in his career, Burch served as senior vice president and CIO of Advanta Mortgage and vice president of  strategic technologies and CIO for First Franklin Financial. He serves on the board of directors for Palomar Health Foundation, which provides healthcare services to communities in Riverside and San Diego counties.

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“We consider ourselves very fortunate to have Cary join our board, as he brings a unique blend of experience in information technology and financial services markets as an operator, innovator, technologist and experienced investor,” said Brian Fitzpatrick, founder and CEO of LoanLogics. “We expect Cary to play a valuable, active role in helping us form the direction of LoanLogics and continue to expand the breadth and depth of our solutions across the mortgage and financial services industry.”

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“I am thrilled to join the board at LoanLogics, a company led by an experienced team with deep roots in the mortgage industry,” Burch said. “Today’s mortgage industry requires greater understanding of loan data, and LoanLogics has the technology and capabilities to quickly and accurately extract, analyize and review loan data for risk and performance. I look forward to leveraging my experience in the mortgage, legal and private equity markets to help LoanLogics capitilize on its strengths while pursuing new applications for its groundbreaking technology.”

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Updated Platform Now Alerts Lenders To Loan Defects

LoanLogics has enhanced its LoanHD Loan Quality Management platform with an Audit Response Center (ARC). The new ARC enables mortgage lenders to efficiently address defects and conditions on loans immediately after each loan has been reviewed. Importantly, it also provides lenders with a compliance trail showing how each defect was addressed, so regulators and investors are able to clearly see what actions were taken.

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The ARC allows the lender to auto-assign a respondent, or the person in the lender’s organization who will submit rebuttals and clear loan defects, such as a missing document or an incorrect fee. The system configuration also identifies “responsible parties,” or the people most responsible for the defect in the origination process.

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The ARC includes a communication module that immediately notifies the respondent and the responsible party of defects discovered after a loan quality review. These notifications will also display responses from the auditor regarding the curing of conditions. The respondent will be prompted to log into the ARC portal to address all issues. Once resolved, the application automatically updates the LoanHD platform.

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This capability enables lenders to have complete visibility into the process, while making sure defects are addressed in a timely manner. Further, lenders can create action plans in LoanHD based on the frequency and sources of defects. These plans can then be easily monitored and tracked to reduce future origination defects.

“With this enhancement to LoanHD, relevant parties in the loan process will find out quickly if there are any defects or conditions in a loan that need to be addressed,” said Dave O’Malley, director of loan quality solutions with LoanLogics. “In addition, lenders will be able to track the progress of defect resolution and make sure the appropriate person in their organization responds to the issue or issues expeditiously.”

“At the same time, there is a compliance trail that shows how each defect was addressed,” O’Malley said. “Regulators and investors not only require lenders to find and resolve issues with loans, but they also would like them to show proof of what they did. This enhancement provides that level of detail so lenders are covered.”

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Integration Seeks To Increase Loan Quality

First American Mortgage Solutions, LLC, a subsidiary of First American Financial Corporation (FAF) and provider of lender and servicer solutions that cover the entire loan spectrum, completed its integration with LoanLogics, a provider of loan quality management and performance analytics. The integration provides users of LoanLogics’ LoanHD platform with streamlined access to FraudGuard, First American’s data-driven decision-support tool that helps lenders comply with regulations, improve the speed and efficiency of application reviews, and increase loan quality.

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The LoanHD platform, LoanLogics’ flagship loan quality management technology, offers real-time loan quality reporting and best practice audit workflows. From within the LoanHD platform, users can now order FraudGuard services directly from the AppQ Network vendor management portal, which provides lenders with easy access to an entire ecosystem of third-party services that create efficiency and reduce errors in the audit lifecycle.

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“LoanLogics is committed to ensuring our clients have the tools they need, when they need them,” said Craig Riddell, senior vice president and chief business officer for LoanLogics. “By continually expanding our LoanHD network with the addition of best-of-breed solutions like FraudGuard, we’re helping our clients drive toward zero defects, improve their loan manufacturing process and reduce cost, while increasing the efficiency of audit reviews through technology and automation.

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FraudGuard is First American’s comprehensive decision-support tool that helps lenders originate compliant, defect-free loans using a combination of superior data, pattern-matching analytics and industry experience garnered from over 28 million reviewed loans. The next-generation data validation tool draws on public, private and proprietary data sources to deliver analytics that help lenders mitigate risk and accelerate the loan application review process.

“FraudGuard’s unparalleled data assets make it a stand-out among loan quality management tools,” said Kevin Wall, president of First American Mortgage Solutions. “We’re pleased to bring LoanLogics users on-demand access to the critical data insights and automated decision-support services they need to originate high-quality loans with confidence.”

The Regulatory Risks Ahead


Get ready, because 2017 will bring a lot of new regulatory challenges. You can be sure that regulatory risk continues to weigh heavily on lenders’ minds. So, are there any specific regulatory rules coming up in 2017 that lenders should be preparing for? How about enforcement action? What hot button items do lenders need to stay away from next year?

You bet, answers Wade Hamby, national director of sales and marketing, Stonehill Group. “The new 1003 and HMDA change is going to be big next year. Servicing remains in the spotlight and will continue to be. With respect to TRID, in the fulfillment area we are seeing that it takes more time to clear stips.”

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Hamby has more than 25 years of executive experience in mortgage lending, outsourcing and quality control. He oversees The StoneHill Group’s nationwide sales and marketing activities and is responsible for expanding use of the company’s solutions in the mortgage industry.

“Further, the new 1003 will impact how you capture data,” he continued. “Lenders have to have partners that are effective when it comes to cyber security. You have to do the penetration testing and meet those compliance needs. Too many vendors don’t provide those services. There’s a lot to prepare for.”

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So, how do lenders get prepared? Many are turning to technology. One can argue that technology plays a far more significant role in today’s enforcement driven market. With so many regulatory landmines, lenders use technology to stay out of trouble, protect profitability and be as efficient as possible. That being said, how have lenders’ technology strategies evolved in the year or two? Why? In your opinion, what are the elements of an effective technology strategy in today’s market? And what is the single biggest mistake lenders make regarding technology?

“Technology is critical,” pointed out Brian Fitzpatrick, president and CEO of LoanLogics, Inc. “We are missing the boat to what technology should be doing to drive down cost, though. Technology has to embed all the rules. Technology has to take all of those rules and guidelines and embed them within the system and deploy as close to the point-of-sale as possible. Technology has to be dynamic so it can be easily changed as the rules change.”

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Fitzpatrick oversees all operations of LoanLogics. Mr. Fitzpatrick has raised industry-wide awareness of how technology plays a key role in the production and measurement of loan quality and performance.

The regulatory landmines ahead are many. “There are a number of new obstacles things coming up,” added Fitzpatrick. “For example, the required use of trended credit data will be mandated. Comments are due to the CFPB for updates to TRID. The changes will be impactful. There will be new HMDA fields that need to be captured. In 2017 we’ll see the optional use of the new 1003, which will be mandatory in 2018. All of this speaks to the need for more dynamic technology.”

“In addition, we are expecting UCD in the second half of 2017,” added Kelli Yarbrough, vice president of Loan Retention, Roundpoint Mortgage Servicing Corporation. “We are expecting a lot of guidance. In general, lenders need to resist the urge to rush into things like non-QM. You need to be well trained and have your technology in place before you wade in.”

Yarbrough is responsible for all aspects of customer contact in the loan retention process for RoundPoint’s MSR portfolio. Ms. Yarbrough is a veteran of the mortgage industry with more than 16 years of experience leading both sales and operations teams in wholesale, retail, and direct-to-consumer channels.

“As much as lenders rely on technology, often times we are catching things too late,” she noted. “A key point to a successful technology strategy is system integration. If the systems aren’t able to speak with each other they won’t last. Everyone needs to remain nimble, but we can’t forget to invest in training programs for the front line. The LOs have to understand how to use the technology and comply with the rules. I think we expect too much from our technology.”

A wild card in all of this could be the outcome of the Presidential Election. “With the election coming up, we should look at larger issues like a lack of new affordable housing,” said Fitzpatrick. “Also, rates are going to go up. So, how does all of that impact the market? The news coverage needs to focus on these issues relative to our industry, as well.”

Regardless of what happens, the smart lender has their eye on the future. “Next year will be the year that we crack open all the data,” said Brian Koss, EVP of Mortgage Network. “If you are forced to collect new data at the same time you have to deal with a new application, that should be a good thing for the space to digest. It will be a good opportunity for the industry to rethink the entire process.”

Brian Koss has more than 25 years of mortgage banking experience and has personally generated more than $1 billion in home loans. Mr. Koss has trained hundreds of loan officers over this career, including many top producers. For ten years, he served as the host for “Mortgage Mondays” on the nationally syndicated “Money Matters” radio show.

“Lenders are typically founded by sales guys that pay little attention to detail and just buy technology off the shelf,” Koss said. “It’s like self medicating. You have this ache so you take this medicine, then this other thing hurts so you pick up some medicine for that, but you aren’t aware of how those medicines work together. Lenders will some times buy something because it sounds good, but you have to look at how that new technology impacts your process and other technologies. That decision making process has to end.”

All of this change is making it more and expensive to originate a loan. “Everyone is talking about how the front end is changing and being digitized, but the real issue is that we have to figure out how to bring the cost of complying down,” concluded Fitzpatrick. “Lenders will not be effective if they are always scared of compliance enforcement. A lot of the technology on the market today is old technology that has been around for 20 or 30 years. It’s like building a new modern house on top of old knob and tube wiring system. It doesn’t work. Technology has to evolve to help lenders meet the challenges of complying.”

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