Rob Chrisman's

Daily Mortgage Commentary

  • Feb. 19: LO jobs; marketing, training products; ‘nother wholesaler exits; new lender products; conforming news

    February 19, 2019

    Where’s John Mellencamp when you need him? Lenders in rural areas know that over half of U.S. farm households lost money farming in the past few years. In 2018, the median (half above, half below) farm income for U.S. farm households was -$1,548. U.S. farm debt hit more than $409 billion in 2018, the largest sum in four decades, and farming’s Chapter 12 bankruptcy filings have been on the rise in the past several years.
     
    Jobs and personnel moves
     
    “With average loan costs hovering above $8k a pop, if you’re going to compete for purchase business today you need today’s tech! Guess what? Someone’s already overhauled mortgage tech so you can compete on lower margins and higher comp. Yeah, you read that right. Give your clients a better deal AND make more at the same time. Don’t believe it? See for yourself: Canopy Mortgage is trimming the fat AND keeping LO comp intact. Take our price quote engine for a spin to see what it could do for your borrowers! Then schedule a call to see what it will do for your comp. Reach out to Josh Neumarker, Director of Business Development (888-696-9076).”
     
    LoanFuel, headquartered in Salem, MA is proud to announce industry veteran Ralph Armenta has joined LoanFuel as its EVP and Chief Revenue Officer to lead the company in its next phase of growth. Ralph has a long history of creating growth and profitability in mortgage banking, private mortgage insurance and financial technology. You can reach out to Ralph@loanfuel.com for more information about the company.
     
    Lender products & services
     
    Simplify your underwriting process with Loan Product Advisor® asset and income modeler (AIM). Through the expertise of third-party service providers, AIM automates the manual processes of assessing borrower assets and income. AIM reduces the burden of traditional documentation, speeds up the loan origination process and helps you close loans faster. Freddie Mac is working hard to bring you solutions that create efficiencies for your business and improve the borrower experience – giving you a competitive edge. These capabilities are available for Loan Product Advisor submissions and resubmissions on and after December 9, 2018. Gain greater efficiency in your underwriting processes with AIM – get The Freddie EdgeSM.
     
    Leaders, 2019 is your year to stack your team with incredible talent. XINNIX has empowered hundreds of mortgage companies and thousands of managers to recruit top-producing mortgage talent and take their business to the next level. Just last year, leaders who engaged with XINNIX for their recruiting efforts hired an average of 1.5 LOs within 90 days of completing a XINNIX Performance Program. Want to learn more about a proven model for recruiting the best talent to build your sales force? XINNIX has developed a new resource to help. The 4 Key Factors for Sourcing Experienced Loan Officers gives managers tips needed to win the recruiting war. CLICK HERE to download Part 1 of the 4-week series. What are you waiting for? If you’re ready for top talent to elevate your team’s production today, contact XINNIX today!
     
    Wholesale-Only Platform/Pricing Engine/Portal = More Volume/Happy Brokers/Thrilled Operations Staff/Far Less Cost. ReadyPrice is a plug ‘n play wholesale platform that connects dozens of investors (through you of course) to hundreds or thousands of brokers. It’s an enterprise strength, cloud-based, browser-driven LOS with a fully-embedded Pricing Engine with ERROR TRAPPING that handles all loan types, including non-QM and HELOCs. Plus, a robust Broker Portal/CRM for signing up new brokers in an instant, searching, locking, submitting, underwriting and managing every aspect of their pipes, collaboratively. Best yet, ReadyPrice can stand-up this platform in an hour plus a couple of weeks of admin configuration and training all for a fraction of the price of heavy, legacy competitors. Call us at (408) 357–0931 or email hello@readyprice.com to get a free demo today.”
     
    Ever wonder why we call it the “closing table?” Shouldn’t it be the “beginning table?” While you may consider it the finish line, the closing is really the beginning of a lifetime relationship with a customer. Simply put, customer loyalty equals revenue. Learn new tactics at the MBA Servicing Conference where TMS Chief Strategy Officer Barbara Yolles will cover the “Growth Opportunities for Servicers” panel on 2/26 at 2PM.
     
    Never lose another pre-approved buyer to the behemoth public real estate search sites. With HomeScout® custom-branded lead and conversion technologies you can take the guess-work out of where your leads and pre-approved buyers are going to search for homes, after they understand their buying power. Make sure they aren’t venturing to public search sites where their private information is sold to your competition – where they’ll experience unwanted sales pressures from strangers who bought their information from those online sources. They’ll appreciate the value of HomeScout’s 100% MLS listing data and guaranteed privacy when searching for their next home. Best of all HomeScout provides a search widget that can be added to your web site and a buyer reporting interface to monitor and support your buyers throughout the entire purchase process. Find out more by contacting the company HERE and scheduling a demo or call 952-831-0623.
     
    “Doing business with Caliber Correspondent just got easier than ever! Introducing Encompass Investor Connect™. Caliber Home Loans, Inc. is pleased to announce our latest file delivery enhancement, in partnership with Ellie Mae, Encompass Investor Connect. Caliber is the first non-bank mortgage lender to fully launch this integration with Ellie Mae. Encompass Investor Connect will increase your delivery efficiencies by eliminating the need for uploading a closed loan package via our Correspondent Lending Portal (“CLP”).
    Encompass Investor Connect provides an all-in-one solution by establishing a secure system-to-system workflow with Caliber Correspondent. Encompass Investor Connect will also ensure the delivery of accurate and compliant loan data and documents. You must be a mutual customer of Ellie Mae Encompass and Caliber in order to take advantage of this enhancement.”
    For more information about Encompass Investor Connect, contact your Caliber Sales Representative
     
    Cardinal Financial started with a mission to deliver the best mortgage experience possible. No matter what the market conditions may be, they are determined to deliver on their mission. How do they make this happen? They ensure that their team is empowered and supported by the best tools and technology solutions. When a traditional CRM no longer provided the functionality they needed to deliver the best mortgage experience for their people, partners and customers, they turned to the Total Expert Marketing Operating System® (MOS). Read the full story: How Cardinal Financial Helps People Achieve.
     
    Sign of the times
     
    From Connecticut comes word to brokers that, “Village Mortgage Company regrets to inform you that we have made the difficult decision to dissolve our Wholesale Division. We all work in a competitive, fast-paced industry; confronted with new regulations, technological advancements, and typical trade challenges every day. Unfortunately, current trends in the Wholesale arena have prompted Village Mortgage Company to phase out this channel… Over the past five years, our Wholesale Division brought many borrowers and their families into the happy homes that they deserved and that could not have been done without all of you! Our portal will remain open for continued access to any current and archived loans until August 2019. However effective Friday, February 15, we will no longer be accepting new files.”
     
    New lender products
     
    Union Bank’s Wholesale Lending, known for its jumbo and super jumbo product as it has no agency products, let brokers in CA, OR, WA, NV, AZ, and IL know that it has a 40-year IO portfolio ARM product. (It also offers owner-occupied, 2nd home, and non-owner products.) No minimum FICO score on loan amounts up to $750k. No minimum FICO score to $2M on most products. (Questions should be directed to Gina McLeod, VP, AE, 858-344-4254.)
     
    TIAA Bank offers a one-time close construction loan. Financing options include new home construction, tear-down and rebuild or existing home renovations. Interested in learning more? Contact David Taormina.
     
    Guild Mortgage has launched Guild-to-Go, a mobile application providing a direct connection between Guild loan officers and real estate agents. Designed to provide more transparency and efficiency throughout the loan process, Guild-to-Go allows the company’s real estate partners to connect directly with their preferred Guild loan officer from any mobile device or select a loan officer by location through the app’s built-in map feature. Once registered, agents can refer their clients to Guild to start the loan application and pre-approval process with a few simple clicks.
    Guild-to-Go generates customized, on-demand pre-approval letters, allowing agents to submit offers faster for their buyers. Agents also can track the status of their customers’ files throughout the loan process with real-time updates and status notifications from application to close.
     
    George Mason Mortgage, LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of United Bankshares, Inc. rolled out the GMM Digital Mortgage Intuitive Lending™ platform powered by Ellie Mae. “Encompass Consumer Connect offers an engaging online consumer experience for lenders to turn a consumer’s interest into a quality application that can be closed faster with complete transparency and compliance,” said Joe Tyrrell, Ellie Mae Executive Vice President of Corporate Strategy. “With a digital interface, George Mason’s Intuitive Lending™ platform connects borrowers with mortgage professionals at their fingertips on any device, anywhere and offers simplified, faster, more efficient process.”
     
    Citadel offers a 1-Month Bank Statement program. Visit the Citadel website to find out additional details including requirements and restrictions.
     
    Wells Fargo Funding has expanded its identity-of-interest requirements for conventional Conforming and Non-Conforming Loans as follows: A verification of mortgage is no longer required. An assignment of sales contract is only treated as identity-of-interest if the assignment created a non-arm’s length or at-interest influence.
     
    Freddie and Fannie, conforming conventional news
     
    Looking for ways to grow your business? Freddie Mac is collaborating with clients to deliver automation and insights that provide a competitive edge. Cut back on documentation and reduce time to close with Loan Product Advisor® automated income and asset assessment capabilities. Save borrowers time and money with ACE appraisal waivers, now available for certain condo unit loans. Grow your condo business with Freddie Mac’s unit-level condo exception tool, Condo Project AdvisorSM. Get greater efficiency with simpler collateral QC and underwriting in Loan Collateral Advisor® Get The Freddie EdgeSM.
     
    Uniform Loan Dataset Delivery (ULDD) XML files for conventional Conforming Loans delivered to Wells Fargo Funding on or after February 18, 2019, with applications dated on and after January 1, 2019, must meet ULDD Phase 3 requirements. Sellers are not required to deliver ULDD XML files.
     
    PennyMac will be updating the requirements for the “Purchase Special” on the Conventional and Government LLPA tabs of the Best Efforts rate sheet. Effective February 18, 2019, the “Purchase Special” LLPA will only be applicable for 15-day or less lock periods and loans must be delivered by March 17, 2019.
     
    Fannie Mae’s Servicing Guide 2019-01 outlines changes related to foreclosure time frames and compensatory fee requirements. FAQ’s related to these changes are also available.
     
    Capital markets
     
    Tuesday already! Economic data over the last week was mostly soft and has led some to adopt a more pessimistic view of the future demand. Conversely, one could view the 35-day government shutdown as temporarily giving pause to consumer demand which will resume course in February and March as those affected receive their back pay. Globally, demand is slowing, and China is adopting more stimulus to help bolster its economy. Stateside, tighter monetary policy appears to be on hold for the moment, but the stimulative effects from tax reform are fading and Congress has been unable to pass any sort of meaningful infrastructure legislation. For the time being, inflation remains near the Fed’s long-term target and while most economic indicators remain in expansion territory, the rate of expansion has begun to decline.  Initial claims for unemployment remain historically low, however they have trended up since September hitting 239,000 for the week ending February 9. This comes amid a record number of job openings in December and small business lamenting they are having difficulty filling openings.
     
    The slope of the yield curve flattened last week. Besides a pod of Fed speakers this week (Fed presidents Mester, Daly, Bostic, Williams, Bullard, and Vice Chair Clarida), there’s a fair amount of news. Today is only the NAHB Housing Market Index for February at 10AM ET. Tomorrow are the MBA’s app stats for last week and January’s FOMC meeting minutes. Thursday we’ll have December Durable Goods Orders, weekly Initial Jobless Claims, and the February Philadelphia Fed Survey. Friday: January Existing Home Sales and January Leading Indicators. The yield on the 10-year, which ended last week at 2.67%, is unchanged as are most agency MBS prices.
     
     
    Retire to the South. Y’all kin say whut y’all want ‘about the South, but y’all never heard o’ nobody retirin’ an’ movin’ North, have ya? (Thank you to Rhonda M., who lives in the South, for these; Part 2 of 5)
    Georgia
    The owner of a golf course in Georgia was confused about paying an invoice, so he decided to ask his secretary for some mathematical help. 
    He called her into his office and said, "Y’all graduated from the University of Georgia and I need some help. If I wuz to give yew $20,000, minus 14%, how much would you take off?" 
    The secretary thought a moment, and then replied, "Everthang but my earrings."
    Louisiana
    A senior citizen in Louisiana was overheard saying, "When the end of the world comes, I hope to be in Louisiana." 
    When asked why, he replied, "I’d rather be in Louisiana ‘cause everything happens in Louisiana 20 years later than in the rest of the world."
     

     

    Visit www.robchrisman.com for more information on our industry partners, access archived commentaries, or to subscribe to the Daily Mortgage News and Commentary. If you’re interested, visit my periodic blog at the STRATMOR Group web site. The current blog is, “How are You Going to Compete.” If you have both the time and inclination, make a comment on what I have written, or on other comments so that folks can learn what’s going on out there from the other readers.
     
    Rob
     
    (Market data provided in partnership with MBS Live. For free job postings and to view candidate resumes visit LenderNews. Currently there are hundreds of mortgage professionals looking for operations, secondary and management roles. For up-to-date mortgage news visit Mortgage News Daily. For archived commentaries, or to subscribe, go to www.robchrisman.com. Copyright 2019 Chrisman LLC. All rights reserved. Occasional paid job listings do appear. This report or any portion hereof may not be reprinted, sold or redistributed without the written consent of Rob Chrisman.)
     

  • Feb. 18: Wholesale team available; upcoming events & training; primer on why rates go down when bond prices go up

    February 18, 2019

      So much going on!   The economy? Discount shoe store Payless will close all 2,100 of its locations in the United States and Puerto Rico in the coming months. The Agencies? Former Congressman Mel Watt “misused” his position as director of the Federal Housing Finance Agency (conservator of Freddie & Fannie) by attempting to “coerce or induce” a relationship with a female employee seeking a promotion. M&A? Any time a major bank grows unhappy with the earnings and margins of its residential lending arm and servicing portfolio and decides to shop it around, well, that attracts attention. (Rumors of AT&T, Sprint, T-Mobile, Verizon Wireless showing a big jump in cell minutes as competitors called HomeStreet branches are unconfirmed, but what LOs and branches will be left, and what will the buyer actually be buying, when the dust settles? Stay

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  • Feb. 16: Letters on forecasts for 2019, the role of appraisals, False Claim Act policy, and LO comp

    February 16, 2019

    I know Monday is a national holiday, like Thanksgiving or the 4th of July, so who’s checking emails this Saturday? Darned if I know, but it’s a quick read. (When I was a kid, we had both Lincoln’s and Washington’s birthdays off – those were the days!) There continue to be lots of issues in residential lending, so let’s get going.   LO Comp: the issue that just won’t go away   That whole LO comp thing is “all put to bed,” right? Wrong. I am still hearing that there are issues out there, ranging from companies trying to fine tune their own plans all the way to finger pointing and name calling at other companies, and saying things like, “I heard that some attorney said point banks are just fine!” In a timely note mortgage attorney (who also does

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