Clarifire Conversations

May 23, 2019

OCC Joins Regulating Agencies to Embrace Innovation in Financial Services

As part of its ongoing innovation initiative, the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) has announced its own Innovation Pilot Program. The pilot will complement several ongoing programs and efforts, including the creation of the new Office of Innovation, “innovation hours” programs at various offices, and the availability of bank charters to fintech companies. Moving another step forward, the innovation pilot will establish a “sandbox” environment where financial institutions can test innovative products and services in a controlled environment.

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May 16, 2019

Don’t Put Your Vendor Partnerships at Risk as Innovation Progresses

A lot of industry attention is currently focused on the finish line for the digitizing of the mortgage business, with mortgage lenders, servicers, and vendors in countdown mode.  In this environment, it’s important not to lose sight of the risks that lay along the route. Additionally, digitizing the mortgage lifecycle only represents a portion of the evolving automated mortgage process, which encompasses expanding data and privacy requirements, the increase of mobile applications, and much more. 

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May 16, 2019

5 Hot Topics from the 2019 Patient Experience Symposium

Hospitals want to provide a great patient experience, but at times it can be a challenge. The hot topics and emerging trends covered at this year’s Patient Experience Symposium appropriately pointed out that Patient Experience is more than one single thing done by a single person.  Instead, Patient Experience must be a mission, one that is owned by every team member within the organization.  Clarifire was there to discuss the issues and collaborate with providers on how to improve the patient experience.  In case you couldn’t be there, here’s our key takeaways from the conference.

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May 09, 2019

Ginnie Mae Summit 2019 - Are you registered?

Following this year’s MBA National Secondary Marketing Conference and Expo, the mortgage industry is looking forward to Ginnie Mae’s 2019 Summit. Subject to registration approval, lenders, servicers, investors, document custodians, policymakers, and members of Congress are already set to attend this annual event.  Taking place in Washington, DC from June 13 through June 14, 2019, this year’s summit promises an “in-depth, top-to-bottom perspective on Ginnie Mae’s business.” While there will certainly be a lot of developments to come out of the conference, we have a sneak peek of what to expect.

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May 05, 2019

Mindfulness - Stress Relief That Leads to Better Patient Care

Salary.com conducted a recent survey, compiling a list of the top 10 most stressful jobs.  Nursing ranked #6.  Surprising to some, but not to those that have made it a career to care for others.  Nurses are the glue that holds everything together.  Doctors rely on them to carry out orders and provide updates on patient status.  Patients need them to provide the care necessary to make them healthy.  Nurses go the extra mile to accommodate both groups and never say “that’s not my job”.

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May 02, 2019

Gaining Clarity on the Value of Workflow - Pursuing Digitization for Loan Servicing

The mortgage industry’s latest buzz word is “digital mortgage”, a novel term for the ongoing pursuit to remove paper from the process.  However, this endeavor encompasses mobile apps, eClosings, data integration, blockchain, and other areas that are all aligned with mortgage origination.  Once a mortgage loan is closed, the data is passed onto the servicer, where it is far from digitized.   

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April 26, 2019

The Cost of Government Mandates

In a recent blog, we highlighted an American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE) survey addressing the top issues confronting hospitals today.  It was no surprise that financial concerns topped the list based on the CEOs surveyed.  Numerous factors can have a direct impact on finances and the overall sustainability of hospital operations. One of those factors, government mandates, found itself second in the list of top issues confronting hospitals.  Keeping on top of all the changes and managing their impact on the bottom line can sometimes be easier said than done. 

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April 25, 2019

Front Row Seat to the Future of Housing Finance

In a few weeks, key housing finance and servicing stakeholders will gather in New York City to discuss what lies ahead for capital markets, government lending, and mortgage servicing. Clarifire will attend the Mortgage Bankers Association’s Secondary Marketing Conference and Expo on May 19 through May 22, 2019, to stay on top of industry hot topics, including mortgage servicing rights (MSR) liquidity, the future of the secondary market, government lending issues, and the digitization of mortgage lending.

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April 21, 2019

Celebrating Those Who Make Patient Experience a Success

In 2014, The Beryl Institute introduced ‘Patient Experience Week’ as a time to recognize healthcare staff that have an impact on patient’s experiences each day.   As the industry has moved from volume based to value-based care, consumerism has made patient experience even more critical to organizations.  Proving to be an important factor for improving patient safety and clinical outcomes while at the same time eliciting the highest reimbursements possible, Patient Experience is top of mind for most healthcare organization leaders.

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April 18, 2019

The Disaster Response and Relief Dashboard is Ready - Are You?

With nearly a dozen different disaster relief specific programs and constantly changing foreclosure moratoriums, mortgage servicers shouldn’t need another reason to take disaster preparedness seriously.  If you’re still trying to catch up to the pack in deploying technology-enabled workflow and workout solutions to manage the varied rules and requirements tied to disaster relief, Ginnie Mae is making a case for proactively tackling the effects of natural disasters that you can leverage.

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April 11, 2019

How to Use Automation to Drive More Business to Your Organization

The industry continues to hunger for technology to improve workflow, as well as streamline and automate operational efficiencies. While these investments promise a competitive edge in a challenging environment with tight margins, other factors, outside of a servicer’s control could also have a big impact on business profitability.  

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April 07, 2019

The Top Challenge Facing Hospital CEOs

In today’s healthcare industry, hospital CEOs face numerous challenges that can disrupt the balance between providing patients with exceptional quality of care and maintaining financial solvency for the organization.  In a recent survey by the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE), they presented the top challenges cited by community hospital CEOs.  For the tenth consecutive year, financial concerns was number one on the list.  While hospital operating expenses increase, reimbursements and volume of patients continue to decrease.  Managing and overcoming financial concerns while providing communities with the services they want and quality they need proves to be the most challenging for CEOs.

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April 05, 2019

Making "Cents" of Buy Versus Build

With record low profitability in the mortgage space, lenders, servicers, investors and government agencies alike need to aim for maximum resource efficiency. This approach extends to your technology and software strategy as well. When margins are stretched, and manual operations no longer cut it, industry participants must ask themselves whether it makes sense to build or buy their technology solutions.

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March 28, 2019

Missed MBA Tech 2019? We've Got You Covered

Last week, Clarifire told you what to expect from the Mortgage Bankers Association’s (MBA) annual Technology Solutions Conference and Expo in Dallas, Texas. But if you didn’t have a chance to make it down there, we’ve got what you missed. In addition to a showcase of new advancements, the conference explored the tradeoff between upfront investment costs and long-term efficiencies, drags on innovation, and the trajectory of the Mortgage Industry Standards Organization (MISMO).

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March 21, 2019

Upcoming Conference Builds on Industry's Continued Partnership with Technology

The Mortgage Bankers Association has promised “big solutions” and “big things” at this year’s Technology Solutions Conference and Expo in Dallas, Texas. As the mortgage industry continues to embrace technology solutions in every aspect of the business, the conference next week offers an opportunity to expand the dialogue between lenders, servicers, and vendors to uncover new areas in need of innovation and improve on existing services.

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March 20, 2019

3 Tips to Improve Patient Experience Today

Has your team struggled with improving the patient experience at your hospital?  Are you overwhelmed by the possible strategies to employ in order to improve your quality and HCAHPS scores?  Many organizations labor over which strategies or data is the most important to analyze.  Don’t get caught up in analysis paralysis!  With so many options available, here are 3 things that you can do to continue improving your patient experience.

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March 13, 2019

Living in the Now at MBA Servicing Conference

Mortgage servicing is at a point of inflection, as this segment of the industry becomes more innovative and customer centric. The focus at this year’s Mortgage Bankers Association National Mortgage Servicing Conference and Expo highlighted this element, hitting the present and ‘the now’. The industry event in Orlando, Florida, appropriately themed “Servicing NOW!” explored the lessons of the past and the promise of tomorrow. 

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February 28, 2019

Rounding on Patients - How Do You Make Them Feel?

“People will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” – Maya Angelou

Let’s pretend we’re having a conversation, and you can see that I’m not giving you my full attention.  Maybe I’m looking across the room, or I’m distracted by my cell phone or watch.  I look up and say, “Go ahead and talk. I can listen while I do this.”

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February 28, 2019

How to Make it Through the Maze of Multiple Modification Options

Most servicers’ portfolios include a mix of mortgage programs, reflecting a diverse origination market. Last year, the government-sponsored enterprises, Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, represented the largest sector having purchased roughly 40 to 50 percent of new originations. The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) and Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) are responsible for a little less than a quarter of the market, with private securitizations accounting for a small 2 percent of new originations, Small Business Administration (SBA), U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and portfolio loans withstanding.

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February 22, 2019

The Ongoing Challenge of Collateral Rehab on Disaster-Stricken Properties

Over the past few months, Clarifire has published meaningful discussions on the numerous requirements mortgage servicers have taken on to manage disaster relief programs and support homeowners experiencing related financial hardship.  Amidst financial remedies, such as forbearance and disaster relief modifications, there is another critical area that servicers look out for in times of disaster…. ensuring property repair doesn’t financially burden borrowers or impair collateral.

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February 14, 2019

How to Stop Operational Disruption from Disasters in 2019

The extent to which natural disasters are hitting the United States is beyond historical servicer casualty planning.  The three costliest natural catastrophes in the world occurred here in 2018. As all servicers can attest, navigating record-breaking natural disaster has epitomized operational disruption.  This year is likely to produce a whole new set of homeowners in need of disaster relief, continuing to put the onus on servicers to triage these issues in real time.  As this trend continues, servicers should take the lessons learned from 2018 to rethink and strategize how to more effectively manage the effects of future occurrences.

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February 06, 2019

Regulatory Roller Coaster - The Ongoing Ride For Servicers

Over the past decade, mortgage servicers have had a front row seat to a dramatic transformation of the regulatory and investor landscape. Just about the only thing that has been consistent since the financial crisis is change. Simply identifying and staying abreast of ongoing updates has been an enduring challenge for servicers, who are trying to make the most of available resources.

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January 30, 2019

Solving the Complex Puzzle of Disaster Relief

With an unprecedented number of US natural disasters in 2018, servicers remain in the mode of assisting borrowers that have been impacted.  In addition to handling ongoing cases, every new contact necessitates that servicers immediately begin to triage borrower circumstances. With each government entity stipulating their own unique requirements, servicers face a conundrum as they endeavor to analyze and execute on different modification options across disparate timelines and qualifying criteria.

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January 24, 2019

How Servicers Can Help Borrowers Survive the Government Shutdown

In previous blogs, Clarifire has discussed how servicers can successfully manage natural disaster relief. This month, however, servicers are faced with responding to a different kind of disaster – the government shutdown. With roughly 800,000 impacted government employees, servicers play a key role in helping borrowers navigate the challenges resulting from temporary loss of income.

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January 20, 2019

How to Overcome the Servicing Challenges of Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

2018 was a busy year for loan servicers and Clarifire was there to cover all the hot topics and emerging issues. Fluctuating market conditions, regulatory oversight and policy changes were all on the radar. Clarifire will continue to cover the challenges of 2019, sharing insights and guidance on circumventing issues as they arise.  After over a decade of collaborating with servicers to identify and solve problematic scenarios, we continue to work towards ensuring servicer readiness and responsiveness in today’s evolving financial landscape.

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