In equity news, despite some predictions to the contrary, the market had its best month since 1987. This, in the face of renewed layoffs and economic scaring in the service sector for many lower paying jobs and small businesses. Fixed income… Do you like rates where they are? (The average 10-year yield during the month of November was .86 percent.) Good. You’ll probably see them for much of 2021, depending on pandemic-related news. Although bond market investors and economists often talk about inflation, think about it. Do you see broad-based price pressure pushing yields higher any time in the next year, based on employment data? Retailers have shifted to on-line purchases as well as curbside pickup. Money has shifted from travel and restaurants into home categories like comfort, upgrades, and improvement. What will happen in 2021? There is a whole new slew of homeowners out there who will continue to improve things. Does home improvement include filtering air? Meritage Homes rolled out the MERV-13 air filtration standard and the EPA airPLUS certification to all of its buyers. When I was a kid, I drank out of a garden hose, shared cookies with classmates, as a parent stuck the pacifier back in my kid’s mouth even after hitting the ground, and still drink tap water. The horror!
Chances are your company just wrapped up its Open Enrollment period for benefit elections. As an originator, did you have an option to participate in a traditional 401(k) plan with a company match and a rare after-tax contribution benefit that allows participants to contribute up to $57,000 (or $63,500 after age 50) to their plan? How about a deferred compensation plan that gives participants an opportunity to defer wages in excess of qualified retirement plan limits on a pre-tax basis and accumulate tax-deferred earnings? You’ll find both of these unique programs in Academy Mortgage’s comprehensive benefits package for Loan Officers, which also includes medical insurance coverage, voluntary dental and vision coverage, company-paid basic life insurance and AD&D, voluntary disability insurance, and even voluntary pet insurance. If your benefits package is missing any of the above, contact Senior Vice President Bill Sohan to learn more about Academy, where building your prosperity is a top priority.
NASA and SpaceX this week brought science fiction closer to reality with the launch of the Resilience mission to dock with Int’l space station, and the step-changes we see to the look and feel of, well, everything. What’s your next mission? Interfirst has launched a new Charlotte office, near the heart of the Queen city, and is now aggressively hiring. Since Interfirst announced its return to the wholesale space, enthusiasm from mortgage brokers, community banks and credit unions has been sky-high! Interfirst is delivering on its commitment to being the most broker-centric wholesale firm in the country. Interfirst is currently sourcing talented AEs to meet this growing demand from our expanding national footprint. Seasoned AEs interested in learning more about available opportunities can reach out to Casey Nunn directly or feel free to apply here.
Lower rates (plus lower payments) for the win! Becoming or joining an independent mortgage broker lets you offer borrowers the lowest rates possible. With multiple lenders at your disposal competing to get your business, you can bring your customers ultra-low rates in the 2s. Plus, lower interest rates mean smaller payments, making homeownership more affordable for your customers. They won’t forget it, and they’ll tell their friends, too. To learn more about what wholesale lending can do for you and your clients, visit BeAMortgageBroker.com/Contact.
Broker & lender services and products
Attention retail loan originators! As we wrap up a very strong year of business, now could be the ideal time to open your own mortgage business. Submit your application for AIME Spark’s small business grant! To help fund Spark’s grant program, Home Point Financial contributed the first $1 million to establish more minority-owned and women-owned mortgage brokerages throughout the country. Applications for Spark are open now through January 31. For more information on Spark’s programs and to submit an application, visit the AIME Spark website.
Clarifire is the pandemic servicing partner that maximizes results throughout your organization with fast, efficient loss mitigation processing. Our CLARIFIRE® application has been automating and innovating loss mitigation processes for servicers since the last financial crisis. So you can say we’ve been there, done that for over a decade. With no-touch automation supported by sophisticated workflow and complex workout decisioning that uses extensive interactive processes, CLARIFIRE delivers the formula your default servicing operation needs to ease the pressures of distressed homeowners and anxious investors from prolonged pandemic volatility and velocity expected well into 2021. Move away from sluggish platforms with delayed updates to technology with rapid, streamlined access to evolving automated relief programs as changes are needed. Clarifire is the vendor partner ready to help clients with whatever 2021 throws at the mortgage servicing industry. Let us show you how to future-proof your organization with CLARIFIRE®.
According to Inman, the real estate media company, a whopping 73% of agents are re-evaluating their current relationships or looking for new ones. Momentifi launched its Certified StorySeller program at the Finovate online conference last week to help mortgage companies and LOs protect their current relationships and find new ones in 2021. “The challenge we’ve found is that LOs are too busy to get in front of referral sources, and COVID is also making live events impossible,” says Momentifi CEO, Gibran Nicholas. “Meanwhile, agents still need CE credits. So, what if we could turn the process of earning CE credits into an online networking opportunity? Your LOs don’t need to do anything other than invite their referral partners. We teach the classes and handle everything else. The referral partners walk away with RESPA-compliant free CE and co-branded marketing with their LO.” Click here to email Gibran directly and get a sneak preview.
Do you use ServiceMac or The Money Source as your subservicer? Richey May & Co. is conducting a subservicer oversight review of ServiceMac, with a review of The Money Source coming up in December. Richey May’s program and subsequent 120+ page report provides value beyond the basic compliance requirements. With a focus on current and ongoing procedures as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the review includes interviews with all key department heads to observe their processes and challenges, a comprehensive review of business continuity and IT assessments to ensure client and consumer information remains secure, and a summary of the subservicer’s notable accomplishments, challenges, and strategic initiatives for the future. Optional loan level testing is also available to provide succinct and valuable insight into how your personal portfolio is being serviced, potentially uncovering unobserved information, and assisting in the client-subservicer relationship. To learn more or to participate in the upcoming review of ServiceMac, or our reviews of The Money Source, Dovenmuehle, LoanCare or Cenlar, please contact us.
HomeBinder now Official Bronze Ellie Mae Partner! In November, HomeBinder achieved Bronze Partner status as part of their partnership with Ellie Mae announced in June 2020. HomeBinder, a unique post-close client retention platform that centralizes home management and keeps lenders top of mind, comes co-branded with both loan officer and real estate agent information as desired. The relationship doesn’t end with a closed loan for you OR Agents you work with. You can find out more about HomeBinder in the Ellie Mae marketplace or click the links below. Book a live demo or call us today (1-800-377-6915).
LoanCraft continues to adapt to the needs of lenders. Its highly configurable report can be customized to meet the changing COVID requirements of investors including P&L and bank statement analysis. The LoanCraft report’s intuitive format is designed to be used by Loan Officers and Underwriters, providing a clear picture of the borrower’s income and required documents from the beginning of the process, eliminating multiple reviews by Underwriters and prevents an incorrect income calculation from derailing a deal late in the process. The LoanCraft service can be immediately implemented with no set up fees or monthly minimums and is available with warranty coverage as well. Just upload PDFs through the secure portal or select LoanCraft in Encompass and they do the rest, usually in less than 4 hours. To learn more about the benefit of having LoanCraft on your team. Email Dominic Spadafore or visit loancraft.net to get started.
Training & events
There’s still time to register for XINNIX’s upcoming webinar, “Proven Ways to Build New Talent”, happening tomorrow, December 2 at 1 PM ET hosted by Founder & CEO, Casey Cunningham. As the expert in building new talent quickly and effectively, XINNIX will share their proven methodology behind successfully empowering and equipping the next generation of mortgage professionals. Leaders looking to grow their teams in 2021 won’t want to miss this event. Prepare for all the success that potentially lies ahead for your business in the new year: reserve your seat today!
National MI’s upcoming December 2020 webinar sessions are open for registration. Choose from multiple topics such as Business Planning for Success, Managing Your Career and Life Like a Boss, with Cultural Outreach and Help, I’m Overwhelmed! with Bruce Lund, Ph.D.
Fast track and streamline your loans with Digital Verifications and Validations. Join loanDepot Wholesale/Correspondent via its Zoom Training every Wednesday beginning at 11:00.
Train for 2021 this December with Arch MI Courses. Choose from a variety of topics such as Making the Loan Application Process Easier, Navigating and Evaluating Personal Tax Returns, Mortgage Fraud and Basics of Business Tax Returns and the Self-Employed Borrowers.
Genworth Mortgage Insurance provides complimentary webinar courses to help customers manage, protect, and grow their business, delivering you-centric solutions that matter. Throughout December, Genworth is recapping industry happenings and helping you plan for 2021 with a review of the 2020 NAR Profile of Homebuyers and Sellers, a Year-End Agency Wrap-Up, and The 2021 Agenda. Also included is a 15-minute course on COVID-19 Underwriting Tools and Resources. View the full December Training Calendar here.
Here’s a webinar Assessing Creditworthiness of Self-Employed Borrowers for Mortgage Loans today at 1PM ET/10AM PT with expert speakers from Indecomm and FormFree.
Indecomm is also hosting a webinar tomorrow on “10 Ways to Avoid Title Claims & Penalties” at 1PM ET/10AM PT.
Arch MI’s December Training Calendar is posted, and registration is open. Learning opportunities include: Master the Mystery: Navigating and Evaluating Personal Tax Returns, Negotiate the Numbers: The Basics of Business Tax Returns & the Self-Employed Borrowers, Negotiate the Numbers Applied: Case Study: Sole Proprietorship, and Mortgage Fraud: Do Your Diligence.
DealDesk Focus: Non-QM solutions for Investment Properties featuring Sprout Mortgage, hosted by Samuel Bjelac and Leslie Nguyen, Sprout Mortgage on Wednesday, December 2 from 1-2PM ET.
Register for the MMLA December 2nd Webinar presented by Mortgage Cadence to learn about the changes in the URLA that are happening in 2021: forms, respective AUS engines (DU and LPA) changes, and the way that you interact with your borrowers and members as well as your technology systems.
Join MBA-NJ on Wednesday, December 2nd for its Webinar Series: USDA Rural Development: Program Basics and Updates. This presentation will cover the basic qualifications for potential borrowers to obtain 100% financing.
Join Josh Friend, the CEO of Insellerate, as he goes live with John Kresevic, CEO JFQ Lending, on key industry insights and in depth conversations where they discuss the outlook for 2021, the purchase market, the economy, industry trends, and much more. Thursday, Dec 3 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM PT.
OMBA is providing a VA Training designed to teach how to effectively underwrite, process and originate VA loans. Changes in VA guidelines that have not been updated in the handbook will be discussed, as well as Circulars that will provide guidance for obsolete information in the handbook. This 8-hour webinar will be conducted in two 4-hour sessions, December 3rd, and December 10th from 1:00 to 5:00 pm EST.
Discover how the Carrington Advantage Series of Non-QM products can help jumpstart 2021. Join LIVE on Thursday, December 10th @ 11 AM (PST) and get direct access to our credit team for answers to your toughest Non-QM questions.
Register for the October Research Webinar: Economic and Regulatory Outlook on Tuesday, December 15th when Stewart Title’s Chief Economist Ted Jones and Wolters Kluwer’s Andy Dunn will provide a 2021 outlook and areas of potential growth.
What lies ahead for the mortgage industry in 2021? It’s important for originators and lenders to keep the constant stream of news in context in order to know how to best help their clients. Join MMG Chief Market Analyst Bill Bodnar and me for the Industry Outlook 2021 webinar on Wednesday, January 20th at 2:00 p.m. ET, as we discuss some of the “big picture” industry topics for the year ahead.
In global bond markets, around $15 trillion of bonds currently offer negative yields. In contrast, U.S. 10-year Treasury bonds currently yield 0.86%, which is their highest level since June. The yield on U.S. Agency MBS is even better, equating to a current yield around 1% over a comparable short-term U.S. Treasury bond. Today’s low-rate environment makes refinancing mortgages attractive for borrowers. As a result, there is considerable supply of MBS with principal and interest being ‘passed through’ to holders of MBS, explaining the spread mortgages offer over U.S. Treasury bonds, which is currently wide. When rates rise and refinances drop, in turn meaning lower prepayments, MBS investors will receive more certainty about cash flows in an environment with a lower supply of new bonds, meaning the spread offered by agency MBS should tighten.
Yesterday saw a quiet close to November. Neither Treasuries nor MBS exhibited much movement to open the week. There were a couple headlines out of Washington (Congress’ impending shutdown, Judy Shelton’s flagging Fed confirmation, Biden’s cabinet appointments and that new pandemic relief package) and a couple economic releases (Pending Home Sales decreased 1.1% in October for the second month in a row, but were still running at a pace 20 percent higher than a year ago, and the Chicago PMI fell to 58.2% in November from 61.1% in October, better than expected) for markets to digest. Finally, it was reported LIBOR fixings would be extended two years to the end of 2023 for all but the 1-week and 2-month fixings as SOFR struggles to gain market traction in derivatives trading.
Today’s economic calendar has a bunch of “second tier” news: Redbook same store sales for the week ending November 28, Final November Markit Manufacturing PMI, November ISM Manufacturing Index, October Construction Spending, and November Dallas Fed Texas services. Today’s Fedspeak includes Chair Powell, Treasury Secretary Mnuchin, Governor Brainard, San Francisco’s Daly, and Chicago Evans. The Desk will purchase up to $6.7 billion MBS, comprised of $1.3 billion UMBS15 1.5% and 2%, $3.6 billion UMBS30 1.5% and 2% and $1.8 billion GNII 2% and 2.5%. We begin the day with Agency MBS prices down/worse a smidge and the 10-year yielding .86 percent after closing yesterday at 0.84% on no real news.
I don’t mean to interrupt people. I just randomly remember things and get really excited.
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, “Time to Call the Landlord?”.
(Market data provided in partnership with MBS Live. For free job postings and to view candidate resumes visit LenderNews. This newsletter is designed for sophisticated mortgage professionals only. There are no paid endorsements by me. For up-to-date mortgage news visit Mortgage News Daily. For archived commentaries, or to subscribe, go to www.robchrisman.com. Copyright 2020 Chrisman LLC. All rights reserved. Occasional paid job & product listings do appear. This report or any portion hereof may not be reprinted, sold, or redistributed without the written consent of Rob Chrisman.)