Feb. 20: Marketing, LO jobs; digital, pricing products; retail digital & program news incl. loanDepot’s smartloan

Watch out for spam emails asking for your phone number. Seems like they are trying to get past the two-factor authentication that sends a six-digit code to cell phones. And please watch out for rogue capital markets people in the lunchroom microwaving grapes just for the thrill of it. Hint: it has to do with skin & water. And speaking of water, a new law in Texas may block your access to it if you want to be part of sprawl. (Drinkable water, if you didn’t know, is a resource that will only grow in scarcity and importance; most in the U.S. take it for granted.)

Employment & personnel moves

A top 10 non-bank lender is seeking a Chief Marketing Officer to drive growth in its Direct to Consumer business. The Ideal candidate has strong mortgage knowledge and/or other consumer finance marketing background and will be responsible for the development, implementation, management and analysis of all marketing strategies and programs. This senior leader must be attuned to the nuances of customer retention versus new customer acquisition and lead generation. Seeking a leader with strong digital marketing and analytical skills with a focus on driving ROI and CPF in parallel with building a strong brand. Confidential inquiries can be sent to Anjelica Nixt; please specify the opportunity.

Unison is pleased to announce the addition of Chris Freemott as Director of Business Development. “Chris’s 20+ years of residential lending experience, most recently as Capital Markets Director with Celebrity Mortgage, will help us advance Unison’s lending relationships and accelerate the loan investor adoption of our 5% down payment program,” says Raj Dosaj, Unison’s Managing Director of Business Development. “Our goal as a company is to help every home buyer cross the liquidity hurdle that exists in the housing market today.” Chris adds, “I cannot think of a more compelling home ownership solution than the Unison programs and I am thrilled to be here. I’m very much looking forward to bringing on new lenders and loan purchasers to fundamentally change the way homeownership is accomplished.” Unison is modernizing the home financing marketplace by introducing equity to the home purchasing and ownership experience.

CMG Financial welcomes Chris Blevins, Divisional Sales Manager, Central Division. After strengthening its East Coast coverage, CMG has shifted its focus to continued growth across the Central states. Chris is a demonstrated sales leader with over twenty-five years of mortgage leadership experience, previously holding senior management positions at other well-known national and regional lenders. “I’m excited about joining CMG Financial because it’s exactly what the industry needs, a company equally focused on the loan originator, the referral source, and the client,” Chris Blevins said in a statement. Charlie Rogers, SVP, CMG Financial, added, “I have worked closely with Chris in the past and I know that he will be a dynamic leader who will grow our already well-established markets and expand our footprint throughout the central part of the country.” If you’d like to grow your business in 2019, visit us.

National MI announced that 18-year vet Anthony Ruiz has joined the team as an Account Manager covering the Indiana and Kentucky markets. “His extensive knowledge of both markets and the customer base will allow Anthony to transition smoothly into his new position and continue National MI’s growth in the territory.”

Lender products and services

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.

Join us for National Mortgage Professional Magazine’s complimentary webinar “Stand Out in the Crowd: How to Successfully Collect 100’s of Online Reviews,” featuring Cameron Tolman and Rob Mayfield of Podium, on Thursday, February 21 at 2 pm Eastern.  It should be no secret that online reviews are a powerful tool that can influence buyer behavior. In fact, a vast majority of consumers now say they trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations from family and friends. Don’t leave your online reviews to chance! During this webinar learn first-hand from experts at Podium how to harness the power of customer feedback and make the most out of your online reviews. You will walk away knowing, why online reviews matter to your business, how to use online reviews to climb up local search rankings and tips and tricks proven to help businesses collect 100’s of new reviews. Register for this complimentary webinar here.

Compass Analytics has announced updates to both its pricing engine, CompassPPE™, and pipeline hedging analytics, CompassPoint™. As lenders focus on improving execution, efficiency, and cost control, Compass announced integration enhancements and upgraded mobile capabilities. Among the updates, CompassPoint™ has further enhanced its mobile responsive Pipeline Vitals platform to support enhanced bid tracking. For CompassPPE™, real-time API integration with three additional mortgage insurers has been implemented—loan originators can now get real-time MI quotes directly from the engine. The enhancements made during this release cycle were a direct result of client feedback, according to James Baublitz, Product Manager of Pipeline Analytics, stating, “This release reinforces our role as a provider of integrated capital markets and sales solutions for mortgage bankers.” To learn more about CompassPoint™ or CompassPPE™, visit the release announcement page.

Imagine increasing your borrower satisfaction by 25% in less than two months. That’s exactly what happened for a regional credit union that implemented Maxwell’s digital mortgage point-of-sale solution. Maxwell continues to be the leading digital mortgage solution for small- to mid-size lending teams looking to improve their borrower experience and increase profitability. I’ve seen firsthand the results and impact Maxwell can have across many different organizations, from independent lenders to banks and credit unions. Their platform enables teams to easily launch an all-encompassing digital experience to their borrowers, while providing industry leading tools and integrations to help improve loan officer efficiency across the organization. To learn more about Maxwell visit www.himaxwell.com or request a demo here.

Caliber Homes Loans, Inc. is excited to announce its partnership with BlitzDocs. The integration with BlitzDocs will provide Correspondents the ability to configure stacking orders and define company-specific documents for both the submission package and the closed loan package as well as have immediate access to loan status and conditions. Correspondents can simply click a button within BlitzDocs and documents will automatically upload to Caliber’s system. This enhancement eliminates the need for the loan package delivery process via Caliber’s Correspondent Lending Portal. It’s just that easy! Stay tuned for additional enhancements as we continue our work with BlitzDocs. Please contact your Caliber Sales Representative with any questions.

Retail news

Here’s the latest update to Bank of America’s Digital Mortgage Experience™, which allows prospective buyers the ability to be preapproved for a mortgage using their mobile app and has some interesting quotes from Kathy Cummings, SVP Homeownership Solutions, Bank of America on the advantages of preapproval.

A loan in seven minutes? What if the movers can’t come for three weeks? loanDepot (retail) is rolling out “a proprietary point of sale system that offers Dual AUS + Data First, then intelligently connects every step of the loan’s origination from paper to digital, from application to close.” “mello smartloan is a first-of-its-kind end-to-end digital home loan that can identify significant time- and cost-savings for customers in just minutes. By creating a fully digital experience from application through closing, customers can save significant volumes of time, and give them greater surety across the entire process. mello smartloan harnesses our proprietary mello technology, together with intelligent data to shave up to 80% of the work customers would normally need to complete from application to close, which eliminates a lot of the frustration that has, to date, often accompanied the mortgage experience. mello smartloan uses multiple income/asset providers to widen the net and increase the coverage of financial institutions, which increases the likelihood of being able to digitally validate a customers’ income, employment and assets. As a result, customers know—usually within minutes—if their employment and financials are sufficient for their home loan to be approved. And, with mello smartloan, even if a customer does not receive an appraisal waiver, they will know the results of their appraisal valuation much sooner, again reducing the time to close. That’s because Appraisal and Title are traditionally two of the longest pieces of the home loan process.”

Churchill Mortgage introduced its Rate Secured program to give borrowers increased peace of mind as they navigate the home buying process. If the borrower does not find a home within that timeframe, they can then easily reset the rate for another 90 days, and more importantly, if interest rates should decrease during the lock time, the borrower will receive the lower rate at closing. “More than ever, borrowers need services such as these to help them make smarter mortgage decisions,” said Tom Gillen, SVP of Secondary Marketing for Churchill Mortgage. “Coupled with our Certified Homebuyer Program, Rate Secured allows borrowers to shop for their dream home with the confidence that their loan will close seamlessly, and at a rate they can plan around.”

Norcom Mortgage has decided to use Pavaso’s all-in-one digital mortgage closing platform, making Norcom the first Connecticut-based lender to offer electronic mortgage closings to its customers. The Pavaso Platform will be utilized through Norcom’s new eClosing process, “Swift Sign”. “By maintaining a true, 100% digital loan process, our borrowers will see drastic improvements over the traditional paper mortgage process while Norcom’s processes become more efficient,” said Mike Dimech, SVP and operations manager at Norcom.

PRMG offers the ability to renegotiate the interest rate on a previously locked loan. Rate Renegotiations requests should be identified as such and forwarded to secondary@prmg.net for consideration. In addition, its policy relative to taking a loan current market has been recently updated from 60 days to 30-day post lock expiration date. PRMG has released an Interest Only option with the C Credit grade on its Expanded Access products. In addition, most of the state restrictions on the Expanded Access product have been removed.

Qualifying homebuyers residing in Massachusetts may be able to purchase with putting little down through the MassHousing mortgage available through Movement Mortgage. Down payment assistance for up to 3% of the purchase price or $12,000 (whichever is the lesser). Pay only 1% interest rate on the down payment assistance for 15 years. Purchase of a primary residence, 1-4-unit property or condo options with payment protection in case of job loss available on eligible loans. Offering the perks of a conventional loan and offering fixed interest rates on the second lien assistance. Contact Kim Lanagan.

Capital markets

Compass Analytics has announced updates to both its pricing engine, CompassPPE™, and pipeline hedging analytics, CompassPoint™.

The U.S. 10-year closed Tuesday at 2.65% as rates moved lower after markets received comments from the normally hawkish Cleveland Fed President Loretta Mester, who said she supports slowing the balance sheet run-off over the course of the year before halting the process altogether. Ms. Mester also said that rates may need to move a bit higher if the economy evolves as expected, but the market took note of the overall dovish tone of her comments and word is investors expect this week’s Fed speakers, including six on Friday, to echo Ms. Mester’s comments. Other news included President Trump saying (about the trade talks with China) that the March 1 deadline is not a “magical date”, implying the deadline could be moved. China’s Vice Premier Liu He is expected to visit Washington for trade talks at the end of the week.

Today’s calendar started with MBA mortgage applications for the week ending February 15 (+3.6%, with refis +6%). That kind of does it for news. The Fed takes over the rest of the session with remarks from Dallas Fed President Kaplan and San Francisco President Daly in addition to the release of the minutes from the January 29-30 FOMC meeting at 2PM ET. We begin today with Agency MBS roughly unchanged from Tuesday’s close and the 10-year yielding 2.63%.

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 4 of 5)

North Carolina

A man in North Carolina had a flat tire, pulled off on the side of the road, and proceeded to put a bouquet of flowers in front of the car and one behind it.

Then he got back in the car to wait.

A passerby studied the scene as he drove by and was so curious, he turned around and went back. He asked the fellow what the problem was. The man replied, “I got a flat tahr.”

The passerby asked, “But what’s with the flowers?”

The man responded, “When you break down, they tell you to put flares in the front and flares in the back. I never did understand it neither.”

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.


(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.)

Rob Chrisman