Dec. 13: Retail & DTC opportunities; Ally’s consumer direct rollout; jumbo news; lenders & loan amount changes

What is this, Europe? 20 weeks off for new parents at American Express? While we’re on employment trends, I’m not sure if this will come as a surprise to anyone but according to a Census Bureau report the number of IT workers has increased tenfold since 1970. Median annual earnings of IT occupation workers were $80,665 in 2014, or almost twice as much as the median earnings of the total workforce in 2014. It also seems to be a job that doesn’t always require an office: IT workers were twice as likely to work at home as all workers (10% compared to 4%) which sure helps traffic.


Pacific Union Financial continues to grow at rapid speed and matching that growth with top-notch talent is a high priority. Pacific Union is pleased to announce the hiring of Regional Vice President Bob Zielinski in the Distributed Retail Lending channel. Mr. Zielinski is in charge of recruiting, branch expansion and oversight of the Florida territory. If you’re considering a change in employment, feel free to submit your resume and introduce yourself to Bob.


In retail news, “On Q Financial is thrilled to announce Laurie Bolduc as its new National Operations Manager. With 35 years of leadership experience – the most recent 16 years in the mortgage industry – Laurie will help drive On Q’s Vision with our Senior Management Team and lead Operations to the next level as we continue to make dreams come true for our customers. On Q Financial is always looking for the best in the industry to join our team in offices from coast to coast. Apply for the next step in your mortgage career at or email”


And a bank is seeking is seeking a self-motivated Sales Manager to build and lead a dynamic team of Loan Originators in Atlanta. “The ideal candidate would have a balance of entrepreneurial vision, leadership, management, and subject matter expertise. They would have a track record of scaling Mortgage volume inside a bank. The individual would have strong attention to detail, be knowledgeable of regulatory policies and procedures, have 5+ years management experience, and oversee branch production and income goals within company guidelines. If you have great interpersonal skills, love to foster relationships with internal and external partners, and you are motivated by building a team, we may be the perfect fit for you.” Send confidential resumes to me and excuse any delays in response due to travel; please specify opportunity.


As featured in The Mortgage Professional’s Handbook, the chapter, Source, Train, and Assimilate New Loan Officers, is now available to download for free. Use this chapter to build and grow a productive sales team to ultimately increase your production. Written by Casey Cunningham, CEO and Founder of XINNIX, The Mortgage Academy, this chapter provides incredible value for managers looking to grow their team’s production. Download your complimentary copy now!


In Consumer Direct news, Ally Bank announced its CD channel focused on its relationship with Ally’s 5 million existing bank customers and expanding the bank’s financial services portfolio. Ally is known for the quirky commercials and their consistent ranking as a top online bank. Teaming up with LenderLive, the program will offer varying term options for fixed- and adjustable-rate loans for new home purchase or refinancing existing mortgages. After applying for a loan, customers can select whether they’d like to be contacted by phone or email, manage loan-related documents, including online document upload/review, and from any device. The launch also spawned Ally’s need for a Charlotte based Program Manager to align business and IT objectives and oversee the range of technology and business project managers. Interested parties can submit a confidential resume HERE.


Diving into product news, there are developments in the jumbo/non-conforming arena.


“Anyone doing business in the Jumbo space should look at Parkside Lending’s suite of Jumbo products. With four different Jumbo programs, Parkside offers aggressive pricing and robust guidelines. Products include both fixed rates and ARMs. And they offer LTVs as high as 95%. Please contact your Parkside Account executive for more information or Sales.”


JMAC Lending has a new non-agency program, with greater flexibility on LTVs. Highlights of JMAC Lending’s Newport Non-Agency program include cash-out up to 90%, purchase up to 95%, loan amounts from $100K up to $2.5 million, NO mortgage insurance, and loss mitigations with seasoning as low as 2 years.


In conjunction with the updated FHFA loan limits, Plaza’s minimum loan amount on Elite Jumbo will change accordingly. Effective for all locks on or after December 1, the minimum loan amount on Elite Jumbo loans is now $424,101 or $1 above the conforming limit for the number of units.


On the conventional conforming side of things there are plenty of changes – mostly concerning loan amounts for 2017. But there is vendor news also regarding Fannie & Freddie programs.


Equifax Inc. announced that its “industry-leading employment verification services, provided by Equifax Workforce Solutions (a business unit of Equifax Inc.) became available Dec. 10 as part of the Fannie Mae DU validation service. Equifax will now also offer asset verification services, available through its alliance with asset technology service provider AccountChek Company, LLC. The employment and asset verification services join the instant and manual income verification services and the IRS tax transcript fulfilment service that were made available through the same program as of Oct. 24. The IRS tax transcript fulfilment services aids lenders in retrieving tax transcripts directly from the IRS and can provide added data around a consumer’s additional sources of income.


Loans originated by lenders participating in Fannie Mae Day 1 Certainty are eligible for purchase by Wells Fargo Funding. Note: Wells Fargo Funding’s tax transcripts requirements are not changing now. Watch for additional information in upcoming communications.


One of the cool new features of Fannie Mae’s 10.0 update is the property inspection waiver. This means that if you get the findings for it when running DU, NO APPRAISAL is needed on the refinance. This will include SFR and condo’s only (no 2-4 units) and up to 90% LTV. To get the PIW (property insp. Waiver) the borrowers on the refinance MUST have been on the prior transaction where the data was submitted from the prior appraisal to Fannie.


Flagstar’s Loantrac was updated on Friday, December 9 to allow registration of loans at the higher conforming loan limits.  Fannie Mae announced that the new loan limits will be updated in Desktop Underwriter on December 10. Freddie Mac announced that Loan Product Advisor was updated on December 2. Please be sure that your submitted AUS findings reflect the appropriate loan amount. There are no closing/note date restrictions. Remember that any loan amount changes that cause the product to change on an already locked loan may be subject to worse case pricing. If you are requesting a loan amount increase on an already submitted loan, submit an updated 1003.


HomeBridge Wholesale is offering Property Inspection Waiver on Rate/Term, Cash-Out and Condo Eligible transactions. Max LTV is determined by occupancy and transaction type.


As of Monday, December 12th, PRMG is allowing Conventional Loans with increased standard balance limits to be submitted, locked and funded. High Balance/Super Conforming Loans with updated loan amounts must be submitted, locked and funded by January 1st, 2017. Existing cases can be resubmitted to the applicable AUS system to take advantage of the higher loan limits but would be subject to any standard underwriting and pricing policies for loan amount changes.


Stearns announced that the new 2017 Agency Loan Limits will be available in SNAP 2.0 on Monday, December 12th. Watch for further announcements on Stearns Lending’s roll-out of Fannie Mae’s Day 1 Certainty and associated benefits that will be integrated into SNAP 2.0.


In reference to the 2017 loan limit increase, Franklin American Mortgage Company loans may be locked using the new higher loan amounts effective 12/05/2016. For loans currently locked looking to take advantage of the new loan limits, the request must be submitted to the Lock Desk at Standard pricing policy applies which may result in a price change.  Additionally, if a lock has expired, worst-case pricing policy applies. If the loan has been submitted to underwriting, and the borrower requests to take advantage of the loan limit increases, the loan must be re-submitted to Underwriting/AUS for consideration.  Regardless of lock status, all loans must be submitted/re-submitted to DU or LP/LPA and receive an Approve/Eligible or Accept recommendation in accordance with the time frames outlined above.


Ditech’s documentation guidelines for borrowers who are starting new employment after the note date of the loan have been revised. This change applies to loans with an LPA decision in a Freddie Mac Eligible product with an application dated on or after December 5, 2016. All loans underwritten using the expiring guidelines with an application date prior to December 5, 2016 must be closed and delivered by January 15, 2017.


On 10/24/2016, Fannie Mae published SEL-2016-08, announcing various Selling Guide updates, as well as DU Validation Services and Enhanced PIWs, components of Fannie Mae’s Day 1 Certainty program. Review AmeriHome’s recent announcement for resulting changes to guidelines.


Arch MI is all-in with Fannie Mae’s 10.0 update. It will support the following: DU Validation for Income (effective immediately) DU Validation for Assets, and Employment (effective December 10th, 2016) and Property Inspection Waiver (PIW) (December 10th, 2016). Arch’s EZ Decisioning program follows DU requirements, the DU Validation Service changes do not impact our guidelines and will be eligible on their effective date, with no guideline changes required. For the PIW change, Arch MI will update our EZ DecisioningSM guidelines to include this as an acceptable type, in addition to a full appraisal. As per the announcement, use of a PIW requires a DU Recommendation of Approve/Eligible, and is applicable for limited cash-out refinances up to a maximum 90% LTV. All the announced changes will be accepted under Arch MI’s EZ Decisioning program. Arch MI’s EZ Decisioning Program applies to loans with a DU approval.


Parkside Lending began accepting locks and submissions with new loan amounts beginning December 5. Loans previously locked or submitted can be changed to the new higher limits, after December 5, using the standard change request process. In addition, loans may fund and be purchased effective December 5. The 2017 loan limits will be implemented in FNMA DU for Version 9.3 or Version 10.0 loan casefiles as follows: Loan casefiles submitted on or after the weekend of December 10, will be underwritten with the new general loan limits. Loan casefiles submitted on or after January 1, 2017, will be underwritten with the new high-cost area loan limits.


Regarding the new loan limits, NewLeaf Wholesale will accept applications and locks at the new loan limits for FNMA/FHLMC (NewLeaf 1 and NewLeaf 2) products effective immediately. Its manual lock process must be followed until January 1, 2017 to lock the loans impacted by these increased loan limits. Effective December 1, 2016 through December 31, 2016, when requesting a lock under the increased loan limits, the Broker must request the lock online with the highest loan amount currently allowed and then send an email to the Wholesale Lock Desk requesting the loan amount be changed to the higher loan amount.  The Lock Desk will update the loan amount and send a lock confirmation.


Looking at rates, the U.S. Treasury market took some minor losses Monday with the 10-year hitting 2.53% but ended well above its worst levels. Agency MBS prices ended unchanged – that’s good, right? The Treasury auctioned 3-year and 10-year notes. Demand for the sale of $20 billion 10-year notes was mediocre and this week’s new Treasury issuance ends with the $12 billion 30-year reopening today. Overseas to start the week Chinese stocks had their worst sell-off in six months as concerns about trade frictions as well as a regulatory crackdown on insurance companies buying equities spooked investors.


Today we’ve had the NFIB Small Business Optimism Index for November (which shot up to 98.4 from 94.9 as a result of the election) and November’s import and export prices (-.3% and -.1%). The U.S. Treasury will auction off $12 billion in 30-year bonds. Day one of the FOMC’s two-day meeting also starts today, with the rate decision tomorrow. For rates the 10-year note closed Monday yielding 2.48% and this morning its at 2.44% with MBS prices better nearly .250 versus Monday’s closing levels.



(Thank you to Ann M. for this one.)

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(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.)

Rob Chrisman