Mar. 27: Shielding income; motivating WFH employees; vendor updates; Saturday Spotlight: Iron Mountain

Let’s take a momentary break from mortgage chatter. Do you think that the well-being of future generations should be give the same weight as that of the present one? That answer may vary based on the generation. Few will argue that the rich are not getting richer and the poor poorer, and the gap is widening. But keeping in mind that someone somewhere sometime will have to pay for the stimulus packages, it is interesting to note that a new study, from IRS researchers and academic economists, estimates that the top 1 percent of households fail to report 21 percent of their income. About 6 percentage points of that comes from avoidance strategies that a random audit simply cannot detect because they’re too sophisticated. This means that for the top 0.1 percent, the unreported income (in partnerships, offshore entities, and other financial mechanisms) could be twice as large as the normal IRS methodologies would indicate. With the use of actual investigators, each additional dollar spent on tax enforcement yields $5 to $7 in revenue reclaimed from the dodgers.

Saturday Spotlight: Iron Mountain


Iron Mountain is a different company than we were 50 years ago. We’ll always remain grounded in the fundamental continued service and storage of our customers’ most precious physical assets; but, increasingly, our customers are embracing Iron Mountain to do even more for them.

This desire for us to do more is a direct result of decades of trust our customers have in us to protect what they value most, and we take great pride in that heritage and our customers’ trust. We are now at a moment in our history, where we’re not only providing the lock to protect assets, but also the key to unlock deeper value in the things they store with us.


If the past year of disruption and uncertainty taught us anything, it taught us a lesson in our own resiliency. It taught us that we can continue to deliver our traditional records and information management services with excellence and go beyond to deliver new, innovative solutions that unlock greater access and intelligence in the things our customers entrust us to store for them, all at speed and scale to address their urgent and long-term needs.


Iron Mountain Mortgage and Loan Solutions provides a broad array of services and solutions that can be tailored to meet your company’s requirements and help you manage the records critical to your business. Accelerate your digital transformation by capturing, classifying, indexing, enriching, and visualizing your loan data regardless of format: physical or digital. Replicate your file room in a secure, offsite environment in order to manage your vast number of documents and records. Digitize your paper-based information and allow fast, easy, and environmentally friendly retrieval of files. Evaluate your current processes and transform your workplace to better manage loan records and information.


Mortgage volume is anticipated to remain high through Q2 2021 – are you ready? Iron Mountain can help!  Lenders continue to see record high volume as interest rates remain low. Are your processes keeping up with record high mortgage volume? Are you meeting your time sensitive SLA’s? Is your operation prepared for an uptick in default volume? Iron Mountain can create a best-in-class document and data operation and reduce your dependency on FTE with AI/ML technology.


Let us help whether you are a Lender, Servicer, or Custodian, Iron Mountain has a full suite of solutions to support end-to-end workflow or optimize particular areas. All solutions incorporate the highest level of security detail Iron Mountain has become widely known for throughout the industry. A wide variety of use cases with many of your peers will highlight our proficiency and solidify Iron Mountain as a household name in the mortgage industry.


Contact us to learn more about what the new Iron Mountain can do for you: Click here to learn more or Email Us directly.


(For more information on having your firm, employee growth, and your charitable side featured, contact Chrisman LLC’s Anjelica Nixt.)

Do Your Values Still Motivate Your Remote Employees?

I received this note from Bob Mansur, CMB, AMP, the Managing Partner of Credit Employee Performance Solutions. “David Solomon, CEO of Goldman Sachs, recently declared that the work-from-home (WFH) environment is ‘an aberration’ and won’t continue for his company. He said the WFH arrangement does not fit the firm’s ‘innovative, collaborative apprenticeship culture’. Jamie Dimon at JP Morgan Chase has expressed similar concerns. He’s asked, ‘How do you build a culture and character? How are you going to learn properly?’

“What is our industry doing to address these issues, particularly as we bring new team members into our organizations? After 2020’s initial, positive reactions to the WFH environment, we’re increasingly seeing more tales of employee burnout, Zoom fatigue, personal isolation, and family conflict. To what degree have our leaders accepted work from home as ‘the new normal’? How are we maintaining our corporate identities and accommodating these remote workers? One response by many executives has been, ‘Let’s reduce our office space because most of them won’t be coming back anyway.’


“What thoughts have you given to changing your company’s values and culture? ‘Family’, ‘Accountability’, ‘Passion’, and ‘Ownership’ may lose their effect when an individual no longer feels connected as part of a common purpose. What is your leadership doing to review and perhaps revise some of these motivating values for your changing organization? Or have the people in supervisory positions successfully altered the ways in which they interact and relate to their teams according to existing values? This new work structure requires not only different practices, but also adjustments in how we inspire people to perform. (Credit Employee Performance Solutions analyzes, recommends, and implements the six critical elements of employee performance to overcome current and future challenges. Leaders at all levels will be able to apply those six factors to improve productivity and retention for the long haul. “Better employee performance. Better team results.” Bob can be reached at 317-517-1892.)

Vendor updates

Services and products are always in demand by residential lenders who’d rather scale up or scale down using vendors rather than hiring and firing employees. Vendors do a lot more than make up odd company names where middle letters are capitalized and that create spellcheck speed bumps. Or putting “e” in front of words. Who is doing what?

Hiring a machine as an underwriter? Why not?  Candor’s Loan Engineering System, LES, conducts a full underwrite in seconds and backs the quality with an insurance policy that covers 185 defects. Proof? After nearly 400,000 underwrites, clients report cycle time reduction of 18.7 days, a pull through lift of 24% and other tangible ROI.

Floify rolled out its built-in e-signature solution, Floify E-Sign. Now enterprise lenders who centralize and streamline their disclosure processes via the system’s innovative Disclosure Desk can leverage the mobile-responsive Floify E-Sign to help power their disclosure workflow. The combination of Floify’s Disclosure Desk and E-Sign helps lenders deliver on the promise of an efficient, modern mortgage experience by keeping borrowers in a single, familiar, fully-branded web portal to complete all tasks related to their loan, from completing their loan application, to uploading documents, to a Hybrid E-Closing.

The Mortgage Collaborative announced the first investment of its recently launched TMC Emerging Technology Fund LP (“TMC Fund”). The venture capital program is funded by a self-selected segment of TMC members to capture opportunities driven by the rapid pace of technological change in the mortgage sector. The investment is a participation in Maxwell’s Series B Preferred Share financing which was led by Fin Venture Capital and TTV Capital.

As mentioned above, Maxwell, a digital mortgage and fulfilment platform for small to midsize mortgage lenders, has raised a $16.3 million Series B funding round led by Fin VC and TTV Capital. Rotor Capital, The Mortgage Collaborative Emerging Technology Fund, and existing investors including Anthemis Group, Route 66 Ventures, and Sovereign’s Capital also participated in the round. Maxwell has raised over $20 million in eight months after a $5 million Series A funding round in June 2020.

Insellerate announced the delivery of key data insights for lenders through its Data IE™ solution. “Turn your borrower data into actionable insights and intelligent engagement. Insellerate’s Data IE solution enables loan officer’s to craft the right message at the right time with the right offer leading to more timely engagement, higher conversions, and enhanced borrower retention.” (To learn more, contact Insellerate.)

Reti360 has partnered with Secure Insight to support its new consumer-facing digital real estate closing eco-system bringing all parties to a contract through close together on a secure platform.  Reti360 allows buyers, sellers, and realtors to communicate and coordinate the details of a closing together with attorneys, title professionals, and all trusted service providers.  Now through a partnership with Reti360, Secure Insight will be providing consumers and realtors access to its nationwide settlement agent database so they may choose professionals and verify the risk and credentials of those with whom they are already doing business. There will be no fee to consumers for a risk report.

Sagent, a fintech company modernizing mortgage and consumer loan servicing, announced a five-year partnership extension with First Citizens Bank. The extension marks two decades of collaboration on Sagent’s consumer-first, enterprise-grade loan servicing platform. Core to First Citizens’ consumer-first approach to mortgage servicing is a technology stack built around Sagent’s LoanServ, a powerful system of record, and CARE (formerly known as Account Connect), a servicer-branded, consumer-facing dashboard that helps servicers effortlessly manage performing and non-performing loans and provide top-notch, real-time customer care.

New Fed Mortgage Corp, a regional mortgage lender licensed in 13 states has announced a partnership with Total Expert, the customer experience platform purpose-built for lenders. Understanding the dual importance of human connection and smart, automated technology the Massachusetts-based lender will leverage the Total Experience Platform to consistently communicate the right message, to the right customer, at the right time.

Norcom Mortgage has partnered with SimpleNexus to build its Easy Street App, designed to provide Norcom borrowers a convenient and safe way to apply for a loan and stay up to date throughout the loan process. Borrowers can even use the app to navigate the loan closing process digitally, eliminating the need for a lengthy in-person closing ceremony.

Indecomm Global Services announced the release of DecisionGeniusTM, a mortgage automation solution that assesses income, credit, assets, and collateral of a borrower to deliver comprehensive decision-making for mortgage loan applications.

Black Knight (BKI) announced the acquisition of NexSpring Financial’s loan origination system. The acquisition strategically expands Black Knight’s capabilities into the high-growth broker channel and provides nice cross-selling opportunities with BKI’s leading product, pricing, and eligibility engine (PPE), Optimal Blue.

Services provider Canopy announced its partnership with moby, which will provide the underlying technology for a new offering known as Clear. A user identification technology designed for use in the mortgage and real estate industry, it authenticates users through visual biometrics.

LenderClose has launched Home Equity Express (HEx), a cloud-native technology for placement of collateral verification data and reports through an intelligent, automated workflow. With HEx, lenders can spend significantly less time per file, with some existing clients reporting their origination time has reduced by nearly 60%.

Spruce announced its integration with FlexClose™, a warehouse financing service. FlexClose Funding is a new process that enables certainty of funds, extended funding times and cost savings for both lenders and borrowers. Read the full story here.

A couple was celebrating 50 years together.

Their three kids, all very successful, agreed to a Sunday dinner in their honor.

“Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad,” gushed son number one. ‘Sorry I’m running late. I had an emergency at the hospital with a patient. You know how it is, and I didn’t have time to get you a gift.”

“Not to worry,” said the father. “The important thing is that we’re all together today.”

Son number two arrived and announced, “You and Mom look great, Dad. I just flew in from Los Angeles between depositions and didn’t have time to shop for you.”

“It’s nothing,” said the father. “We’re glad you were able to come.”

Just then the daughter arrived. “Hello and happy anniversary! I’m sorry, but my boss is sending me out of town and I was really busy packing so I didn’t have time to get you anything.”

After they had finished dessert, the father said, “There’s something your mother and I have wanted to tell you for a long time. You see, we were very poor. Despite this, we were able to scrimp and save and send each of you to college. Throughout the years your mother and I knew that we loved each other very much, but we just never found the time to get married.”

The three children gasped and all cried out, “You mean we’re b&stards?”

“Yep,” replied the father, “And cheap ones too.”

Visit 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, “Ops: Reducing Friction for the Borrower”. The Commentary’s podcast is live and at any place you obtain your podcasts (like Apple or Spotify).


(Market data provided in partnership with MBS Live. For free job postings and to view candidate resumes visit LenderNews. This newsletter is designed 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 Copyright 2021 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