July 28: MLO jobs; broker products; underwriting, customer service tools; RON progress; new exchange-traded TBA product

My cat Myrtle has some publicity once in a while, although she doesn’t want people knowing she can only hear out of one ear. Freddie Mac had some publicity this morning with its earnings release. Here’s some publicity that no lender wants either. “Today, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) took action to end Trident Mortgage Company’s intentional discrimination against families living in majority-minority neighborhoods in the greater Philadelphia area. The CFPB and DOJ allege Trident redlined majority-minority neighborhoods through its marketing, sales, and hiring actions. Specifically, Trident’s actions discouraged prospective applicants from applying for mortgage and refinance loans in the greater Philadelphia area’s majority-minority neighborhoods… require Trident to pay a $4 million civil penalty to the CFPB to use for the CFPB’s victims’ relief fund… To increase nondiscriminatory access to credit, Trident will establish an $18.4 million loan subsidy program. A lender it contracts with will offer loans to qualified applicants on a more affordable basis when borrowing to purchase properties in majority-minority neighborhoods in the Philadelphia MSA. The loan subsidies can include closing cost assistance, down payment assistance, and payment of mortgage insurance premiums.” Don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time. (Today’s podcast is available here and today’s has a discussion with the two Robert Chrismans on this week’s Western Secondary topics. This week’s is sponsored by Candor. With Candor’s Machine as an Underwriter, lenders modernize their manufacturing infrastructure making them immune to margin, capacity, and staffing challenges forever.)

 

Employment

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In the first half of 2022, Planet Home Lending has added seven new branches and nearly 40 new MLOs. How? People and products. People like Planet Financial Group’s CEO and President Mike Dubeck, who knows both Main Street and Wall Street. Or EVP, National Production, Caleb Mittelstet, selected as one of the most connected folks in the business. Intelligent leadership that built a pod system so MLOs work with the same dedicated ops team for each loan. Products? We have those, too. With Cash 4 Homes, your customers can go toe-to-toe with cash buyers with the certainty of guaranteed closing, and HomeReady® helps borrowers outside the conventional box. And intelligently curated products for MLOs make our tech stack enviable. Don’t wait: Our multichannel acquisitions are making waves and you should be making your move. Watch this video featuring Caleb, then email him or SVP Talent Acquisition Brian Miller. Grow your business with Planet Home Lending: Right Place, Right Size, Right Now!

Is the Juice worth the Squeeze? Between margin compression, cost per funding increasing, interest rates rising, is running a branch everything it’s cracked up to be? More and more producing branch managers are questioning if they would be better off focusing on personal production not managing LOs or operations staff? A change in title isn’t always a step backward in life or your career. One of the top teams in the nation is looking to add one mortgage veteran who wants to get back to doing what they love and focus on originating. Our dedicated operations team has closed over $1B in loans and is ready to help 1 seasoned professional dominate their market. If you’re a Producing Manager who wants to step away from meetings, paperwork, and staffing issues to focus on your book of business, contact Anjelica Nixt to schedule a confidential conversation.

Lender and broker services & software

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As volatility continues in the wake of yesterday’s 75-basis point Fed rate hike, and with the potential of more large hikes to come, MCT published a blog on strategies to mitigate risk in volatile markets. MCT doesn’t advise lenders to change their policies or procedures based on volatility, but instead to have a “steady hand” on daily hedging tactics. Interested to learn more about market volatility best practices? Explore MCT’s market volatility guidance for lenders page or read the Six Unique Ways to Increase Your Profitability Despite Market Headwinds whitepaper examining how MCT is helping “Bring BPS Back.” To prepare for market scenarios that require robust margin management, contact MCT today. And to ensure you receive new content when published, please join our newsletter.

If you look at your loan origination software (LOS) as the foundation, just like with a home if there is a problem with your foundation, you are in real trouble. If your home’s foundation is solid, however, it becomes easier to upgrade features or add new rooms, for example. Similarly with technology, if you have a reliable solution that is flexible with the ability to integrate other third-party vendor solutions as needed, it becomes easier to modify your tech stack for efficiently closing loans. MeridianLink recently held a webinar featuring the multiple partner integrations available within the MeridianLink Mortgage LOS. If you are considering a change in your current tech stack and would like to see a more flexible solution to help automate your processes and boost your lending portfolio, be sure to check out the recording here.

Free Report + Webinar Recording: 2H 2022 Outlook: Advice from 5 Mortgage Vets on Managing the Possible Recession Ahead. The news paints a challenging picture for the remainder of 2022 but with deliberate planning, it’s very possible to make money in tough markets. Mortgage solutions provider Maxwell asked five experts (Serent Capital’s Amy Brandt, Richey May’s Seth Sprague, and Maxwell leaders Bryan Traeger, Anthony Ianni, and Kim Powers) for their thoughts on the second half of 2022 resulting in a forward-looking game plan to help lenders best position themselves to compete in a tightening market. It’s available in two formats for free download: a 16-page report and an hour-long webinar recording. For expert advice on how to allocate spend to bolster your bottom line, launch new loan channels and products like HELOCs, hone your mortgage process to achieve peak efficiency, and more, don’t miss Maxwell’s industry outlook. Click here to download 2H 2022 Outlook: Managing Rising Rates, Declining Volume & the Possible Recession Ahead.

Art of Homeownership (AoH) launched a Mobile App for Mortgage Professionals this month, providing financial and homeownership management resources geared toward both past clients and leads. The App’s wide variety of features are designed for high-frequency borrower engagement, to strengthen relationships with your borrowers and create opportunities for repeat/referral business that benefits all parties involved. Included features provide value to first-time home buyers, trade up buyers, and consumers in the middle of their purchase cycle. AoH Co-Founder Ryan Grant comments: “We are quickly becoming an infrequently used industry. We run the risk of people forgetting about us, if we can’t insert value into their lives.” If you’re ready to become the go-to for all things Mortgage and Finance, the Art of Homeownership App was created for you! Learn more here. Mention the Chrisman blog and get $200 off Onboarding Service. Questions? Contact us.

Indecomm’s DecisionGenius makes intelligent loan decisions faster across credit, assets, appraisal, and income (which includes wage, self, and bank statements). DecisionGenius’ glass box technology picks up where black box systems leave questions, delivering in-depth, automated decisioning on both Conventional and non-QM lending. DecisionGenius is backed by reps and warrants as part of our “Indecomm Promise” to our clients. It integrates with multiple loan origination systems and is the industry’s most comprehensive underwriting and loan decisioning solution. Demo DecisionGenius today and get more information.

Third Party Originator (TPO) product news

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TPO GO is the only place you need for your renovation business. With amazing automation, in depth educational tools, and in-house renovation disbursements, TPO GO will be with you every step of the way from application until the renovation is complete. If you are looking for a VA Rehab, USDA renovation, Fannie Mae HomeStyle, Freddie Mac Choice Renovation, or an FHA 203K. TPO GO is your one stop renovation expert! For more information, email us or visit us here.”

“The secret to easier qualifying? Home loans built for your borrowers. At Caliber Wholesale, we know that licensed brokers thrive when they have access to competitive, affordable, and tailor-made financing solutions. That’s why we offer a wide array of products including affordable mortgages designed for first-time homebuyers and repeat buyers. Here are a few: Freddie Mac’s Home Possible® and HomeOne®, Fannie Mae’s HomeReady®, USDA loans, FHA loans, non-qualified mortgages (Smart Series), down payment assistant programs, and options for condos and manufactured homes. If you’re looking for a way to give your borrowers the home loan of their dreams while taking your business to new heights, Caliber Wholesale has the tools for you. Ready to explore the benefits of becoming an approved broker? Contact us today.

Are you looking for more choices and more control for your non-delegated correspondent platform? Contact Rocket Pro TPO today to learn more. Led by Don Chiesa, SVP, a 30+ year industry veteran, our industry-leading platform delivers elite services to non-delegated correspondents. Our vision delivers the control, speed, and simplicity you need, starting with your dedicated Crew team, offering personalized responsiveness in operations/underwriting. PathfinderSM by Rocket is powerful technology that delivers answers you need while using our complete mortgage product menu. Our partners purchase loans are clear to close within an industry-leading 20 business days plus we’ll clear your warehouse lines with average purchase times of 3-5 days. And, in development, is our new fulfillment service that enables partners to leverage Rocket technology for all their disclosure needs including closing documents. Want to learn more about our new solutions coming soon? Contact Rocket Pro TPO today.”

A glint of progress in mortgage technology & other investor news

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It still has to get through the Senate, where the average age is 64 and the oldest is 89, so there is a lack of interest in technology, but the House of Representatives passed H.R. 3962. Bob Broeksmit, CMB, President and CEO of the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA), issued the following statement on the passage of the SECURE Notarization Act. “MBA is grateful the House has passed this legislation that creates federal minimum standards to allow notaries in all states to perform safe and effective remote online notarization (RON) transactions, making the mortgage closing process more convenient for all consumers, including our nation’s military families.

“Importantly, the bill’s minimum standards for RON are consistent with both the MBA-ALTA model state RON bill and the Mortgage Industry Standards Maintenance Organization (MISMO) RON standards and would complement existing state laws by providing states with the flexibility and freedom to implement their own RON standards.

“MBA now urges the Senate to consider and pass S. 1625, the House bill’s companion measure, as expeditiously as possible.”

Turning to a quick look at what correspondents and wholesalers have been up to recently…

loanDepot’s multiple lock period options have been rolled out for brokers. The mello®Broker Portal allows you to lock for 15 days at initial approval. Also, don’t forget, 30, 45, or 60 days are available prior to loan submission. For pre-locks, please submit within 10 days of lock date to ensure the lock does not expire prior to docs out status.

On 6/29/2022, with DR-4657, FEMA declared federal disaster aid with individual assistance to 7 Oklahoma counties affected by a severe storm, tornadoes, and flooding from 5/2/2022 to 5/8/2022. See AmeriHome announcement 20220609-CL for inspection requirements.

LDW WNTW 07_18_22 provides information on Montana’s Disaster Announcement, flood insurance reminder, assets and eligible transactions updates in the loanDepot Conventional Lending Guide, Advantage EXPRESS FLEX Lending Guide update and FHA’s revised appraisal validity periods.

First Community Mortgage Wholesale posted Guideline updates to its Non-Conforming Jumbo Summit/Peak Products per FCM Announcement 2022-35 and its Non-Conforming Jumbo Elite AUS/Elite Plus AUS as posted in FCM Announcement 2022-34.

First Community Mortgage Correspondent posted Guideline updates to its Non-Conforming Jumbo Elite AUS/Elite Plus AUS in FCM Announcement 2022-22.

Wells Fargo Funding issued a reminder to Correspondent Sellers in C22-018nc regarding disclosing and documenting assets on Non-Conforming Loans.

When running Product and Pricing on PRMG Non-QM products, it requires the use of specific criteria due to the complexity of the loan programs. Essential training materials have been published to the Resource Center to help facilitate the process, TPO Non-QM Data Input.

Capital markets: Fed does the expected

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Mortgage traders and hedgers have long been looking for ways to utilize options in their strategies to manage the product’s unique risks. Unfortunately, the OTC market for MBS options has always been illiquid and opaque, while an exchanged-traded market never developed due to the costs and difficulties associated with the pool-delivery processes. A new patented idea for an exchange-traded TBA option has been proposed by Mortgage Option Concepts LLC., however, founded by industry veteran Bill Berliner. The proposed market would carry option contracts settling in cash, so no securities would ever be delivered. Such a market would create a liquid and transparent venue for mortgage option trading, allowing market participants of all sizes to utilize options effectively. The next step is to get an exchange or platform to host the market. Interested? Please email for a package that describes the proposed market and how we hope to proceed.

As anticipated, the Federal Reserve increased its target Fed funds rate by 75-basis points at their July meeting yesterday to combat inflation. The market showed little immediate reaction to the announcement, but did rally during Fed Chairman Powell’s press conference, where he was vague about future plans. He revealed that officials will set policy on a meeting-by-meeting basis rather than offering explicit guidance on the size of their next moves. That won’t help calm volatility, which has been caused recently by the tug-of-war between the persistently high inflation necessitating Fed hikes, and the increasing risk of an economic slowdown and resulting recession. The central bank will slow the pace of rate increases at some point. The Fed also reaffirmed plans to reduce its balance sheet by continuing the passive runoff of its Treasury and MBS holdings.

There was a lot of data to digest before the Fed. Retail inventories rose 2 percent in June, higher than expected, which bodes well for the advance estimate of second quarter GDP that comes out today. Durable goods orders were up 1.9 percent month-over-month in June when the figure was expected to decline. Business spending remained on a positive trajectory and new orders for nondefense capital goods, excluding aircraft, increased 0.5 percent for the second consecutive month. Wholesale inventories rose 1.9 percent as well, suggesting that the supply chain issues of the past two years are working themselves out. And pending home sales declined 8.6 percent month-over-month in June and 20 percent year-over year after increasing a revised 0.4 percent in May.

Following yesterday’s Fed events, attention now turns to the first release of Q2 GDP (-.9 percent, personal consumption +1.0 percent). We’ve also received weekly jobless claims (256k, up slightly). Later this morning brings Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey, July Kansas City Fed manufacturing, and a Treasury auction of $38 billion 7-year notes. The Desk will target UMBS30 4 percent through 5 percent for up to $830 million, the last operation on the current schedule, before releasing a new purchase schedule covering the July 29 to August 11 period in the afternoon. We begin the day with Agency MBS prices a few ticks better and the 10-year yielding 2.75 after yesterday noon/3PM ET close of 2.73 percent after the GDP number.

Usually there is a joke or trivia here. Sometimes, however, something crosses my desk like this short, striking video, that I feel should be seen.

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 titled, “Capital Markets: Protecting Margins and Assets.” The Commentary’s podcast is live and at any place you obtain your podcasts (like Apple or Spotify).

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(Market data provided in partnership with MBS Live. For free job postings and to view candidate resumes visit LenderNews. This newsletter is 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 2022 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.)

 

Rob Chrisman