Jan. 26: Correspondent Manager & LO jobs; FHA & VA updates; advice for those new to the biz

When I grow up I want to… live in a shipping container? Hey, don’t laugh… they’re here, and some suggest are a piece of solving the affordable housing problem. Hey, if the appraiser can find the comps, the Agencies will buy the loans, they’re golden, right? Well, maybe. Yesterday we learned that 2017 ended up as the strongest year for new home sales in the past decade despite December’s weakness.

Products & training & employment

Floify, the mortgage automation and point-of-sale app for top-producing LOs, and Hippo Insurance, an insurtech company that is revolutionizing the insurance experience with a customer-centric model, is excited to announce their 3-part webinar series with speaker, author of Foundation to Sustainable Success, and former top producer, Kelly Resendez. The webinar will be held on February 1st at 1:00pm EST, and you’re invited! During the webinar, Resendez will provide you with the framework and strategies that will set you up for sustainable success. In this first webinar, Resendez will cover: An overview of the Foundation to Sustainable Success, how to manage predictable triggers and self-sabotage, how to commit to discipline and escape the need to be motivated, and how to develop the emotional intelligence, mindset, and core beliefs needed to thrive in today’s market.  Don’t wait, space is limited – reserve your seat at the Foundation to Sustainable Success webinar now

A highly regarded US based financial services firm recently began a search for a Correspondent & HFA Lending Operations Manager. This position provides Executive Operations Management for a $37B Home Mortgage Correspondent Lending Channel, comprised of approximately 500 operations team members.  This is an excellent opportunity for a strategic leader to join a dynamic and top tier bank!  The bank’s search for the right leader will have them seeking a candidate that has correspondent lending and operations experience, as well as someone that will be able to provide industry knowledge and executive insight into the various decisions that impact, enhance, and protect the Home Mortgage Brand and Reputation in the competitive Mortgage Industry. If interested, please email me.

Compeer Financial exists to enrich agriculture and rural America. One of the ways we accomplish this is through our unique mortgage solutions for rural locations and small communities which often fall outside traditional guidelines. Compeer Financial is seeking Consumer Lending Officer positions in Western Wisconsin and Northern Illinois to build strong client relationships and provide innovative and workable solutions for clients looking to follow their dreams of owning a home in a small town, retiring to a hobby farm, or somewhere in between. Consumer Loan Officers establish new networks, identify prospects, and develop relationships with clients and industry professionals as well as working closely with the lending team to create innovative credit packages to meet the client needs. If you’re ready to champion the hopes and dreams of rural America, visit www.compeer.com/careers  to learn more about the Consumer Lending Officer roles and other opportunities. You can also contact Melissa Roth.

Insellerate, a true mortgage CRM platform, announced continued plans for growth with the addition of Daniel Kimm as Director of Sales and Jaime Lee as Director of Marketing. The company saw a 400 percent increase in total number of users last year, and with demand for Insellerate showing no signs of slowing, Kimm and Lee will help support the company’s next phase of growth. Both join Insellerate from Velocify, recently acquired by Ellie Mae. “The loan officer-borrower relationship is unlike any other and because of this, general CRM and marketing automation systems are inadequate” said Insellerate CEO and Founder, Josh Friend. “That’s why we’ve built a mortgage-centric CRM.” Built by mortgage professionals, Insellerate supports the compliance requirements of banks and top financial institutions, while effectively managing the end-to-end loan process. Supporting multiple touchpoints with borrowers and referral partners, Insellerate accelerates sales and creates an optimal customer experience that generates repeat business.

Advice for those in the industry

I asked people of color and women in the industry about their early careers and appreciate the time they spent responding. Others have chimed in as well. I will happily circulate more responses if you care to write and have more already to publish. “What do you think the best advice you can give women starting out in the mortgage industry?” or “What is the boldest move you made that helped advance your career?” or “What do you wish someone would have told you about being successful in this industry?”

Marianne Collins, Ohio MBA & New York MBA Executive Director, and former 35-year mortgage banker, opined, “The best advice I can give a woman starting out in the industry is work hard, but learn to master a balance between work and family. I started out in the industry as a loan officer in 1977. I was a single mom. I became very successful, but I worked day and night. It was tough on my kids. Back then we didn’t have smart phones, or web-based loan origination software, or online loan applications. So, working after office hours meant being at the office or in the real estate agent’s office. Today, a loan officer has everything at their fingertips. It’s easy to work at home and be there for your children.”

Lori Brewer, President of LBA Ware, replied, “The best advice I ever received is that knowledge is power.  Learn as much as you can about every section and division from lead gen & origination all the way through the manufacturing process to shipping, secondary & compliance. Print all the application and disclosure documents – and READ them all, including the fine print.


“The boldest move? Starting my own software development firm. I started my company when the bank I worked for went into FDIC receivership & I found myself without a job. I wish I would have had the confidence to start my company sooner.

Lori wrapped up with, “Something that I wish someone had told me? Stay narrow and go deep. Our industry has many pitfalls that you must really know ‘your area’ to be successful. Early in my career I tried to do too many things. It is hard to be 100% when you are spread too thin. I’ve learned that I’m more successful when I stay skinny but have very in-depth skills and capabilities within our segment of the compensation & sales performance piece of the mortgage industry pie.”

FHA & VA changes

How big of a slice of the origination pie does FHA & VA have? Just looking at Ellie Mae’s clients may provide a clue. Ellie Mae released its December Origination Insight Report (OIR), which shows that the percentage of refinances climbed to 40 percent of all closed loans for the month. Some highlights from the OIR include: Closing rates in December increased, with all loans rising to 71.2 percent, refinances climbing to 65.6 percent and purchases jumping to 76.1 percent. Closing time for all loans increased slightly to 44 days, up from 43 in November. The percentage breakdown of all closed loans held steady, with conventional loans at 66 percent, FHA loans at 20 percent at VA loans at 10 percent.

FHA issued a waiver for four additional counties — Los Angeles, San Diego, Santa Barbara, and Ventura — in California impacted by wildfires, allowing damage inspections to be conducted beginning January 18, 2018. This waiver is in addition to the two previous waivers issued by FHA on October 24, 2017, and November 2, 2017, respectively, of its policy on the timeframe for completing the inspection of properties prior to closing or submitting the mortgage for FHA insurance endorsement in the Presidentially-Declared Major Disaster Areas (PDMDAs) in certain counties in the state of California impacted by wildfires. Mortgagees can find more information about FHA’s PDMDA policies, as well as the 203(h) Mortgage Insurance for Disaster Victims Program and the 203(k) Rehabilitation Mortgage Insurance Program, on the FHA Resource Center’s Online Knowledge Base.

Ditech Correspondent Clients should note its Conforming and FHA underwriting guidelines are being updated.  The Client Guide and product matrices must be referenced for complete guideline requirements.

FAMC Correspondents’ guidelines have been updated as follows to comply with the FHA/VA refinance seasoning requirements: Six (6) consecutive months of mortgage payments are required on the loan being refinanced beginning with the payment made on the first payment due date, AND the first payment due date of the new loan cannot occur earlier than 210 days after the first payment due date of the previous loan. All loans that do not meet the new requirement must be purchased by February 28, 2018.

WesLend Financial posted the following: FEMA Disaster Declaration HUD Waiver FHA Incident end period waiver for certain counties – California Wildfires, under FEMA DR-4353. The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD), Office of Housing, has issued a Waiver of Housing Directive for FHA disaster re-inspection requirements as follows: Waiver of the requirement that the inspection required for a property in a Presidentially Declared Major Disaster Area (PDMDA) not be completed until after the close date for the Incident Period as determined by FEMA, which will permit inspections of properties in {the following counties} for the California Wildfires (DR-4353) PDMDA to be conducted beginning January 18, 2018: Los Angeles, San Diego, Santa Barbara and Ventura.

As of Wednesday, January 10, 2018, Pacific Union Financials’ FHA and USDA Standard Adjusters for Correspondent Lending were updated.

Ditech posted the following information for its Approved Correspondent Clients. Ginnie Mae has instituted the following seasoning requirements for the following transactions: All VA Refinances, FHA Streamline Refinances, and FHA Cash-Out Refinances. The loan is eligible if it meets the following guidelines: The borrower made at least six consecutive monthly payments on the loan being refinanced beginning with the payment made on the first payment due date; and the first payment due date of the refinance loan occurs no earlier than 210 days after the first payment due date of the loan being refinanced. All existing eligibility guidelines remain in effect. Effective immediately for new applications. Existing loans must be closed, funded and purchased prior to February 15, 2018.

Due to a change in Ginnie Mae pooling requirements, effective immediately VA Cash-out refinance, VA IRRRL, FHA Streamline, FHA Cash-out and USDA Streamline assist must meet the following: The borrower must have made at least six consecutive monthly payments on the loan being refinanced, referred to hereinafter as the Initial Loan, beginning with the payment made on the first payment due date; and the first payment due date of the refinance loan occurs no earlier than 210 days after the first payment due date of the Initial Loan. Loans with Flagstar where the borrower does not meet the above requirements are no longer eligible. The borrower cannot prepay payments to satisfy the six consecutive monthly payments requirement. Underwriters, including VA delegated and bulk customers, must ensure the above requirements are met.

PennyMac Correspondent Group has posted a new announcement: 18-03: GNMA APM 17-06 Updates to Seasoning Requirements for Streamline and Cash-Out Refinances.

Capital markets

The economy is pretty much driven by jobs and housing, and this week we’ve received a fair amount of housing news. Yesterday we learned that the sale of new home declined by 9.3 percent in December to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 625,000 from November’s revised rate of 689,000. This was 14.1 percent above the December 2016 estimate of 548,000. For the year, an estimated 608,000 new homes were sold, the highest number since 776,000 in 2007 and the 7th consecutive year-over-year increase. The median sales price of new houses sold in December 2017 was $335,400 and the average sales price was $398,900.

On average, new home sales prices are 43 percent higher than their 2011 lows and 22 percent higher than the 2007 peak. Remember that existing home sales in 2017 hit 5.5 million, its highest level since 6.5 million in 2006 and a shade higher than 2016’s figure and up from the 5.25 million in 2015. There are local areas that buck the trend, but nationwide there is a complete lack of inventory. It’s declined for 31 consecutive months year over year, and at the current sales pace the stock of homes for sale would be gone in 3.2 months, a record low.

Looking at the markets, Treasuries saw a positive day on Thursday and the 10-year note finished 3 basis points lower with a yield of 2.62%. The ECB maintained its current interest rate policy and reiterated its commitment to keep its bond buying program in place or expand if needed. As mentioned, initial jobless claims increased to 233,000 and have been below 300,000 for 151 consecutive weeks. Today’s main headline will be the first look at fourth quarter GDP. With markets looking for +2.9% it came in lower at +2.6%. We’ve also had Durable Goods Orders (+2.9%), December Advance International Trade and December Wholesale and Retail Inventories ($71.6 billion). The day begins with rates a shade higher than last night: the 10-year is yielding 2.64% and 30-year agency MBS prices are worse a couple ticks.

(Please excuse any delays in communication this week, as I am doing volunteer work in an orphanage with a group organized by Forever Changed and wonderfully led by Melissa Herrarte.)

Thanks for this one to Mike B. who sent, “You’ve been working in an orphanage all week. Here’s some information on sponsoring a millennial in the United States.”

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, “Servicing: All It’s Cracked Up to Be?” 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 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 2018 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