LenderNews by Rob Chrisman
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Oct. 5: Sales jobs; training on the phone and conferences coast to coast; Merrill & PHH to part ways; Prosper’s challenge

October 5, 2016

Research by the Appraisal Institute finds the number of appraisers has declined 22% since 2007 and 60% are over 50 years old. Aging? Yes, nature bats last. Regarding the postponed MBAC conference in South Carolina due to Category 4 Hurricane Matthew, JM asks, “Did anyone else find the theme of the meeting ‘right place, right time’ ironic?” And I was told by a few sources that the Miami Trade Show on Thursday was also cancelled as today and tomorrow will be busy evacuation days for the Florida & Carolina coasts.
 
In job news Indecomm Global Services, a leading provider of mortgage technology, training, and outsourcing services is seeking an experienced Marketing Director. Clients include prominent top tier, mid-tier lenders, and regional lenders as well as title and settlement companies. Mortgage Industry experience preferred. This position will be responsible for planning, development and implementation of all of the Organization’s marketing strategies, marketing communications, and work in concert with the public relations activities, both external and internal. Interested candidates should send their resume to VP of Sales Linda Bomar.  
 
On the sales side of job news, for those looking for something slightly different, C.L.A. Title & Escrow, a national title company, is looking to hire local account executives in the states of Maryland, Virginia, Florida, and Washington DC. Candidates must have a title background or come from the mortgage / real estate industry. C.L.A. Title & Escrow’s revenue has doubled since last year and is in the process of getting licensed in Texas and Washington. Please contact CEO John Coester for more information.
 
And congrats to DepthPR, a marketing services and reputation building specialist in digital B2B solutions for mortgage lender compliance, QC, operations, borrower satisfaction and competitive strategic advantage, marked its 10th anniversary in September. “A trusted advisor to leading and emerging firms throughout an extraordinary decade, Depth draws on deep experience in mortgage banking and business consulting to shape a precocious vision of fintech and help clients stake a claim to the industry’s digital future,” said Depth founder and president Kerri S. Milam (alum of KPMG and PR giants Ketchum and Porter Novelli).  “Our client service staff of high-achieving MBAs, award-winning writers and free-range thinkers pump jet fuel into the marketing strategies of mortgage industry innovators, striking while the iron is hot to inject fresh perspective into the conversation at exactly the right time with the right message. Our eye is on the industry’s future, which is why we welcome all things digital!” If you have questions about DepthPR’s services, contact president Kerri S. Milam.
 
And in personnel news, AnnieMac Home Mortgage announced the internal recruitment and integration of three well respected regional leaders located in the Western United States: David R. Williams of Denver, Suzanne Schakett of Houston, and Kurt Sixel of Seattle. (AnnieMac Home Mortgage has methodically expanded since its founding in 2011, and now employs more than 800 lives, over 50 branches and licensed in 80% of America.)
 
Training is the name of the game these days, and sessions or conferences, many of them free, pick up this month and in the near future.
 
“Fish when they’re feeding. Borrowers shop for two weeks, and it is important to be the person that gets their attention during that time. Many borrowers rely on reviews and recommendations as well as social media to shop; turn these conversations into customers by being on the social platforms they are shopping on and be sure to know how to effectively use your social pages/website in a way that will turn visitors of your page into customers. Learn how to ‘fish when they’re feeding’ in this complimentary upcoming webinar from National Mortgage Professional Magazine and presented by United Wholesale Mortgage titled ‘Get Social: Marketing Tips to Reel in Clients’ tomorrow, Thursday, October 6, at 2PM ET by registering here.
 
If you haven’t visited Richey May’s free, interactive dashboard of the newly released 2015 HMDA mortgage origination data, check it out here. You can focus in on specific markets, lenders and product types to uncover data that will help you with strategic planning for the coming year. And while the dashboard is easy to use, Richey May is hosting a couple of free webinars to show you how to get the most out of the report, as well as to discuss trends seen in the data. Both webinars will be held from 12:00 – 12:30 pm MDT; register here for October 11 and here for October 18.
 
Join attorneys Phil Schulman, Holly Spencer Bunting and Charles Weinstein for a 60-minute webinar highlighting certain of the TRID changes and clarifications proposed by the CFPB. This webinar will cover how the CFPB is addressing the “black hole” for resetting tolerances, proposed clarification regarding the sharing of borrower and seller Closing Disclosures with parties to the transaction, updated proposed guidance on completion of the disclosures for construction-to-permanent mortgage loans, proposed changes to tolerances applicable to closing costs where a written list of settlement service providers is required, and several other relevant topics.
 
Join MIAC and The Mortgage Collaborative for an Introduction to Secondary Market Whole Loan Trading webinar on Thursday October 20th at 2:00 PM EST.
 
Wholesale Brokers should take advantage of Franklin American Mortgage Company’s variety of informative trainings. FAMC publishes a “Monthly Customer Training Calendar” available to its customers through the FAMC website.  Partnered with industry affiliates, FAMC is able to offer a variety of training opportunities such as “Appraisal Review”, “Analyzing Income for the Self-Employed Borrower” and “Shut the Door on Fraud” to name a few.  These live webinars assist brokers with training needs and offer true educational value for both new and seasoned employees.
 
MBA’s Mortgage Action Alliance (MAA) is running their first annual Action Week, a weeklong event dedicated to getting more individuals involved in political advocacy that supports our industry. Individuals can sign up to join MAA at www.mba.org/joinmaa, and receive information on running an enrollment campaign at their office at www.mba.org/actionweek. MAA members receive alerts when legislation affecting the real estate finance industry is being considered with an easy way to contact their elected officials, as well as a weekly newsletter on legislative and regulatory events affecting the industry.
 
Essent invites all Mortgage professionals to participate in their on-line learning opportunities.  As usual, there are several topics to choose among. October brings a newly developed course featuring Freddie Mac’s Loan Product Advisor and its redesigned Feedback Certificate.
 
I will be speaking at the Knoxville Mortgage Bankers Association luncheon on Tuesday, November 8th at Cherokee Country Club beginning at 11:30 am. Cost for lunch is $20 and the deadline to register is noon on Friday, November 4th. Registration is at this site.
 
Sign up for the HomeBridge Renovation Training – What You Need to Know and Why on October 12th.
 
 
There is the ACI Residential Mortgage Litigation and Regulatory Enforcement Conference in  San Diego installment on Jan. 11-12. “Meet an in-house counsel from banks and financial institutions, hear how judges interpret and analyze evidence and arguments specifically in the Residential Mortgage context, and learn what’s happening at the government level specifically in the Mortgage context. By attending you will hear straight from the federal and state agencies themselves.”
 
On Wednesday, 10/19/2016, join TMBA to hear Chuck Klein and Troy Garris discuss Mergers and Acquisitions. Tune in to learn how changes in the market have impacted M & A processes and activity. Click here to register.
 
A new FHA pre-recorded training webinar is available. The topic is its SF Handbook Module 9: Nonprofit Approval and Governmental Entities. This new module augments FHA’s recently updated series of SF Handbook self-paced, pre-recorded webinars.
 
On October 18th, California MBA is providing a free webinar. Topics will include Duty of Care, SB 1150, HERO/Priority Liens and more.
 
California MBA is accepting registration for its Legal Issues & Regulatory Compliance Conference in Costa Mesa December 5-6th. Details and registration information can be found here.
 
Speaking of legal issues, disputes between a homeowner’s association (HOA) and an owner can be particularly contentious. To resolve these disputes, most CC&Rs have mandatory mediation provisions, stating that the parties must first try to resolve the issue through mediation, instead of costly litigation. The process of mediation is more collaborative and less adversarial than the traditional litigation route — it attempts to help the parties arrive a settlement that is mutually beneficial and agreeable. Because of the ubiquity of mediation provisions in HOA governing documents, and the growing popularity of mediation as a dispute resolution technique, attorney Simon Offord discusses the essential elements of HOA mediation in his most recent blog article.
 
Moving to the big news this week (so far), PHH announced that it had received written notice from Merrill Lynch (Bank of America) that it would be terminating its relationship with PHH as of March 31st 2017. PHH noted that originations from Merrill will contribute about $45 million of pre-tax earnings in 2016. Merrill had earlier notified the company that it would be removing 60% of its closing volume. In 2015, Merrill was the company’s largest source of mortgage volume and accounted for 26% of its volume.
 
Does it matter? Certainly there is an impact on earnings, but from a balance sheet perspective many analysts put little or no value on the private label contracts.
 
In capital market news, although not residential mortgages, American Banker’s Kevin Wack reported that, “Prosper Marketplace is closing the secondary market for its loans, citing a lack of demand among investors. San Francisco-based Prosper connects consumers who want a personal loan with investors who are attracted to the yields those loans offer. Investors in the loans include both everyday savers and large financial institutions. Prosper’s secondary market will be shut down as of Oct. 27…Unless another option emerges, retail investors who had hoped to sell the company’s three-year and five-year loans will now need to hold them until they mature.
 
“As we have rebuilt and enhanced our retail investor experience, we have found that we must focus on those areas that will provide the broadest set of users with maximum value,” the company said in a statement. “Over time we’ve found that very few investors are using the secondary market. While we’ve decided to wind down this service, the decision in no way changes our commitment to the retail investor.”
 
“Prosper’s secondary market was operated through Foliofn. That firm continues to run a secondary trading platform for Lending Club, which is one of Prosper’s top competitors. Prosper’s decision to shut down its secondary market comes three months after the company rolled out a revamped website that was designed to appeal to retail investors. Last month, the firm reported a $35 million quarterly loss as loan originations fell sharply.
 
Investors’ inability to sell their loans easily is one key reason why relatively few retail investors have put money into the marketplace lending sector. However, the problem figures to be eased by the recent launch of three funds that allow investors to invest in a swath of the sector’s loans, rather than purchasing individual credits.”
 
Looking at Tuesday’s bond market, up a little, down a little – and yesterday prices were down. There was talk about the European Central Bank’s policy moves, or various Fed president’s speeches, or animal spirits… by the end of the day the 10-year note prices worsened about .5 to close at a yield of 1.68%, and the 5-year T-Note and agency MBS prices worsened between .125-.250.
 
This morning we’ve had the weekly mortgage applications from the MBA (up nearly 3% due to refinances, which now account for 64% of all applications). We’ve also had the ADP private employment report for September (+154k with a slight August revision downward) as well as August’s international trade balance ($40.7 billion, about as expected). Later are Markit Services PMI, August Factory Orders, and the September non-manufacturing ISM. With all that going on we find the 10-year wallowing around 1.68% with agency MBS prices a shade better versus Tuesday’s close.
 
 
The frugal man walked into the house panting and almost completely exhausted. “What happened, Honey?” asked his wife.
“It’s a great new idea I have,” he gasped. “I ran all the way home behind the bus and saved $1.50 cents.”
“That wasn’t too smart,” replied his wife. “Why didn’t you run behind a taxi and save ten dollars?”
 
 
If you’re interested, visit my periodic blog at the STRATMOR Group web site. The current blog is, “The Fed’s QE: Help or Hindrance to Lending?” 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 over 300 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 2016 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.)