July 8: AE, LO jobs; referral, social media compliance, client retention tools; Freddie/Fannie changes continue; square footage stats

During a recent password audit, it was found that a blonde was using the following password: “MickeyMinniePlutoHueyLouieDeweyDonaldGoofySacramento”. When asked why such a long password, she said she was told that it had to be at least 8 characters long and include at least one capital. What’s today? It’s “change every password you have” day. Money is the focus of a lot of evil activity on the internet (look at credit union Patelco), but what about useful, constructive monetary activities? Location, location, location. What new home buyers get for their money varies by region. The median price and square footage of new single-family homes sold in 2023, according to the Census Bureau, was $760,700 and 2,430 square feet in the Northeast, $396,300 and 2,172 square feet in the Midwest, $388,800 and 2,335 square feet in the South, and $536,200 and 2,170 square feet in the West. (Today’s podcast is found here and this week’s is sponsored by nCino, makers of the nCino Mortgage Suite for the modern mortgage lender, uniting the people, systems, and stages of the mortgage process. Hear an interview with Candor’s Mark Hinshaw on expectation versus reality when it comes to AI in the mortgage industry.)

Jobs; Consultant available

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Seeking growth capital, equity, debt, or strategic alternatives? An IMB consultant with 34 years of executive management experience in the mortgage space is available to support your efforts! E-mail industry veteran Steve Landes for more information on helping you grow your business.

Top Producing Loan Officer Alex Rayner Partners with Service First Mortgage to Launch Haymaker Home Loan! Alex Rayner has partnered with Service First Mortgage to launch Haymaker Home Loans, a company dedicated to supporting top producers. “This collaboration provides access to cutting-edge technology, products and services, ensuring loan officers thrive in a competitive industry,” Rayner said. Earning an MBA from the University of Houston, Alex is dedicated to providing exceptional service. His industry acumen and skill with client relations set him apart. For loan officers looking to start their own mortgage company, Rayner advises exploring options with Service First Mortgage. “Starting a mortgage company from scratch is a daunting task,” Rayner said. “By partnering with Service First Mortgage, you gain immediate access to essential resources, advanced technology, and a support team. This allows you to focus on what you do best, e.g., originating loans and serving clients, without the overhead and operational challenges of building a company from the ground up.” Inquiries should be directed to James Wallace!

“ACC Mortgage is coming off its 2nd best month in its 25-year history. 2024 is shaping up to be our best year ever! How many mortgage companies can claim that? Are you planning for your next 25 years? ACC is seeking four (4) well-qualified Account Executives or a team that is looking for support, pricing, culture and stability. ACC makes Non-QM easy. Recent articles discuss ACC’s vision. For example, ACC’s Senko talks non-QM outlook! Send a resume for confidential interview.

Lender and broker software, services, and products

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With high interest rates keeping more people in their homes, new revenue opportunities will come from places that don’t fit the typical servicer playbook. ICE has identified four key areas where technology can help set servicers up for success in today’s low-movement housing market. Explore how you can retain customers, capitalize on your existing portfolio, and streamline your back office in ICE’s complimentary new white paper, Technology helps servicers find opportunities in unusual places.

ActiveComply is excited to be part of the Mortgage Bankers Association’s RegTech Demo Day event on Thursday, July 11th at 12:00pm ET. Register to see the latest technologies, services, and insights from leading technology providers in the industry. This session is specifically for compliance professionals, legal counsel, and risk officers, among others. See high-level overviews of vendor technology that may provide value to your organization and help you succeed in an increasingly complex and competitive environment. See how ActiveComply identifies other language advertising as part of your LEP initiatives, consumer complaints on social media, & brand reputation concerns current events and political movements (just in time for an election year). Don’t miss these power-hour sessions designed to help decision-makers clarify the rapidly changing mortgage tech ecosystem. This event, normally priced at $399.00, is free to MBA members. Register today!

Winning Agent Business: The lender’s guide to building a strong referral network updated for 2024. The new rules mandated by the NAR settlement go into effect August 17th. That means agents are more incentivized than ever to show their clients value—and they’re actively looking to partner with top-tier lenders in their market. Want to take advantage and grow your referral business? Maxwell just updated its Winning Agent Business eBook with new tips straight from agents to help you better network to create a strong funnel of referral leads. Download your free copy to learn qualities agents value in their lending partners, networking dos and don’ts, ways to become a go-to lender, and more.

Like rust, the Agencies never sleep

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Freddie Mac published the company’s annual Sustainability Report, which provides details about the company’s 2023 sustainability strategy, activities and performance. The report also includes the company’s Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) Index and Metrics for the years 2021-2023, as well as a Taskforce on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) Index.

Many families are looking into properties with ADUs for multi-generational living to offset rising housing expenses. Others are seeking a balance between caregiving for aging parents and providing a space for privacy and independence. Whatever the reason, ADUs have been on the rise. Many borrowers are looking to purchase or refinance homes with these units or build one on their existing property. Approximately one quarter of borrowers and homeowners that show interest in ADUs are caregivers or anticipate being a caregiver. Learn more about the benefits Freddie Mac offers for financing ADUs.

In recognition of National Homeownership Month, Freddie Mac is encouraging borrowers to benefit from CreditSmart® Homebuyer U, a free course within Freddie Mac’s CreditSmart ® suite of educational resources. It’s designed to empower them with skills and knowledge.

Freddie Mac updated Stable Monthly Income FAQ for Employed Income Calculation with a new question (Q5) concerning calculating the income average for fluctuating hourly earnings and/or additional employed earnings (e.g., bonus, overtime, tips) if there is an occurrence that prevented the borrower from working and/or earning full income for a period of time.

Freddie Mac Single-Family Seller/Servicer Guide (Guide) Bulletin 2024-9 announces updates pertaining to rental income requirements to provide additional flexibility. Shared amenities requirements for residential projects. Aligning the Guide with treatment of documentation provided, but was not required, in Freddie Mac’s quality control review.

Fannie Mae is continuing its work with Freddie Mac to create standardized subordinate documents, publishing documents for Ohio, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. Learn about efforts to expand access to down payment assistance.

Fannie Mae issued a Request for Proposal (RFP) to evaluate qualified interested industry participants for potential inclusion in its Title Acceptance pilot and other suppliers that have viable solutions to reduce borrowers’ closing costs. Vendors can respond to the RFP in ProcureOne. The RFP market interest period closes on July 11, 2024.

Fannie Mae posted the June Appraiser Quality Monitoring (AQM) list to Fannie Mae Connect™. The monthly list will also be available on the AQM page through July 30, 2024, when Fannie Mae Connect will be required for viewing.

FHFA published updated aggregate statistics from the National Mortgage Database (NMDB®) and launched the NMDB Aggregate Statistics Dashboard, a new data visualization tool for the NMDB Outstanding Residential Mortgage Statistics. The release describes outstanding residential mortgage debt at the end of the first quarter of 2024. FHFA Releases Data Visualization Dashboard for NMDB Outstanding Residential Mortgage Statistics has been posted.

Capital markets: another month, another set of inflation data

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There was plenty of economic data released over last week’s holiday-shortened week. The U.S. economy is based on jobs and housing, and last week it was jobs’ turn to be center stage. The focus was on employment stats for June which saw nonfarm payrolls increase by 206k in June. Despite the increase, the previous two months were revised down by a combined 111k which brought the average increase over the second quarter to 176k per month. The unemployment rate rose from 3.96 percent to 4.05, the first time above 4 percent since January 2022. Labor force participation also increased slightly.

As the labor market continues to become more balanced the upwards pressure on wages has eased and average hourly earnings were down 0.2 percentage points on a year-over-year basis to 3.9 percent. The other major data out last week was the Institute of Supply Management indices which both came in below economists’ expectations. The Personal Consumption Expenditure deflator eased to 2.6 percent over the last twelve months in May as well. Sustained easing of inflation as well as a looser job market bode well for a potential rate cut in September. Following last week’s data, the odds of a cut in September are nearly three-in-four.

This week’s economic calendar includes some Treasury auctions of notable duration (3-year, 10-year, 30-year), May Wholesale Inventories, CPI and PPI, as well as preliminary July University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment. The only data point on today’s calendar is May Consumer Credit, due out this afternoon. We begin the 5-day work week with Agency MBS prices little changed from Friday, the 10-year yielding 4.29 after closing Friday at 4.27 percent, and the 2-year at 4.62.

Old Butch

John was in the fertilized egg business. He had several hundred young layers (hens), called ‘pullets,’ and ten roosters to fertilize the eggs. He kept records, and any rooster not performing went into the soup pot and was replaced. This took a lot of time, so he bought some tiny bells and attached them to his roosters. Each bell had a different tone, so he could tell from a distance which rooster was “performing.” Now, he could sit on the porch and fill out an efficiency report by just listening to the bells.

John’s favorite rooster, old Butch, was a very fine specimen, but this morning he noticed old Butch’s bell hadn’t rung at all! When he went to investigate, he saw the other roosters were busy chasing pullets, bells-a-ringing, but the pullets, hearing the roosters coming, would run for cover. To John’s amazement, old Butch had his bell in his beak, so it couldn’t ring. He’d sneak up on a pullet, do his “job” and walk on to the next one.

John was so proud of old Butch that he entered him in the Saint Lawrence County Fair, and he became an overnight sensation among the judges.

The result was the judges not only awarded old Butch the “No Bell Piece Prize,” but they also awarded him the “Pulletsurprise” as well.

Clearly old Butch was a politician in the making. Who else but a politician could figure out how to win two of the most coveted awards on our planet by being the best at sneaking up on the unsuspecting populace and screwing them when they weren’t paying attention.

Vote carefully this fall, the bells are not always audible.

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, “Catastrophe and Climate Risk Is Only Increasing”. 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 2024 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