The mortgage industry and financial services, in general, have been flooded with rules. Dating back to the advent of the Dodd-Frank Act and fast forward to the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, managing operational processes within a framework of variable rules has become a fact of life…. But do we do it well? And, even if we do it well, we may be overlooking a real opportunity, the chance to use technology for end-to-end visibility of processes, customer preferences, and your organization’s product offerings.
The Q3 2023 U.S. Foreclosure Market Report recently published by ATTOM Data Solutions reveals what lies ahead for mortgage servicers. Illustrating an increase in foreclosure activity that has continued to escalate since the lapse of the government’s foreclosure moratorium, we are quickly finding ourselves back where we started prior to the pandemic. Before you think this is no big deal… let’s look at what’s happening, why this surge in activity is different, and what you should be doing to stave off disruption.
As you prepare to head out to this year’s MBA Annual Convention and Expo, take a moment to reexamine your approach to technology innovation. Stop waiting, now is the time to implement change capabilities into your mortgage servicing operation. Don’t you want it all? In today’s fast-paced mortgage environment where servicers remain under immense pressure to streamline processes, cut costs, enhance customer engagement, and move nimbly all at that same time, some servicers are still building their own software and struggling to keep up. We’ve heard this many time before, yet still revert to manual processes and added labor when under pressure, an approach that is simply no longer sustainable in this dynamic servicing ecosystem. To thrive and compete in the mortgage industry, servicers need to automate change with smart logic that leverages modern process components accessible throughout your organization and accelerates trusted, proven innovation.
Natural disasters resulting from hurricanes, floods, wildfires, and earthquakes can strike at any moment, leaving behind a trail of destruction and devastation. In the last two months alone, unsuspecting homeowners have contended with the aftermath of Hurricane Idalia and the ravages of the Maui wildfire. Access to relief becomes a real struggle under this duress, compounded this year by the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s critical funding shortfall. Under such trying circumstances, homeowners don’t know where to turn and often rely on their mortgage servicer for answers to questions on financial relief to help recover and rebuild their lives. Are you prepared to respond to their needs?
The Federal Housing Administration (FHA) is looking to modernize mortgage default servicing processes by inviting more automation into the process and moving away from outdated face-to-face requirements. This illustrates another industry progression that has grown out of COVID-19 pandemic guidelines. From a modernization perspective, the Department of Housing and Urban Development introduced the corresponding proposed rule “to better align with advances in electronic communication technology and mortgagor engagement preferences.” The goal is to allow and encourage servicers to use a number of alternatives to face-to-face meetings and expand these revised meeting requirements to all borrowers in default.
The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on mortgage servicers and homeowners is not over. As agencies and industry stakeholders evaluate the residual effect on homeowners, the question becomes, did the industry help them, and where could we have done a better job? The Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) recently defended the efforts of mortgage servicers in response to concerns published by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Office of the Inspector General (OIG). The MBA highlights how mortgage servicers were diligent in their efforts to help struggling homeowners, pointing to the numerous program changes and scaling to address record-breaking volume as underlying obstacles for servicers throughout the pandemic. However, during this period of lookback, it becomes clear that despite best efforts, servicers need to ensure readiness for future industry disruption, whether it comes from natural disaster, pandemic reverberation, economic calamity, or other sources. Are you ready?
Workflow is defined as a systemic distribution of tasks, information, and documents to users or groups for action based on a predefined set of business rules. Exponentially adding to the power of this definition, Clarifire has been in the business of delivering high-tech automated workflow for over a decade. Starting with a sophisticated application that standardizes and simplifies complex business processes, CLARIFIRE® leverages data that is sourced through strategic industry partnerships. This relationship approach to workflow improves interoperability, accessibility, and seamless system dynamic displays powering servicer capabilities reducing timeframes, errors, exceptions, and cost. The results are compelling and represented in opportunities like one-click loan modification approvals.
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.
From loan origination to loan payoff, there are multiple paths that a loan can take throughout its lifecycle. The best performing loans will follow a clear, straight path with no hiccups along the way. All payments are made on time. This path is the easy street for loans, and the servicers servicing them.
Your organization is in the midst of a digital transformation and new technology is on the horizon. You have survived through the research, vendor evaluations, requirements gathering, and development. Now it’s time to embark on the implementation phase of your organization’s journey to improve operational efficiency.
A carpenter’s workshop is their toolbox. Within it, there are power drills which make it easier than a screwdriver to drill a screw into hardwood. There is a nail gun which drives a nail into a piece of wood in one shot versus swinging a hammer multiple times. They may even have a bandsaw which helps them make more precise cuts than a hand saw. The tools within a carpenter’s toolbox enable them to build things quickly, precisely, and more efficiently.
Summer is here! For many, this indicates the start of family vacations, time at the beach or pool, and barbeques with friends. For those that live along the Atlantic and Gulf coast, summer also marks the beginning of hurricane season.
Superman could leap tall buildings in a single bound. Spiderman was alerted to danger approaching with his spidey-sense. Bad guy on the run? Better hope Wonder Woman wasn’t part of the chase because she would catch you with her super speed.
Buyer’s remorse. It’s never a fun feeling to experience after you make a large purchase. Are you looking to improve operational efficiencies within your organization but you aren’t sure that automated workflow will live up to your expectations?
When you hear the word automation, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Is it a vehicle assembly plant or maybe an order fulfillment warehouse? When most people hear the word it invokes thoughts of robots or machines doing the work once done by humans.
Have you been shopping for a new car lately? The technology in cars has come a long way. Today, there are all kinds of cool gadgets and gizmos available that make it hard to determine what options to choose without breaking the bank.
Workflow automation is like new car technology. When you start to automate the manual aspects of your business, the opportunities are endless. There’s so many bells and whistles that you begin to question where to start. Here are 5 areas to look at when you set off down the road of automation.
New technology is fun and exciting! Making the transition from manual to automated processes can be an energizing endeavor for any organization. The opportunities available are endless, which can also make the move a bit intimidating. It doesn’t have to be! It’s all in the planning.
Adopting process automation technology is more than just plug and play. It eliminates costly, time consuming tasks so careful thought and planning needs to go into your approach and implementation to achieve the best results. Rome wasn’t built in a day and neither will your automation be. Here are 4 phases of planning to help ease your transition from manual to automated processes.
We love automated workflow! Although, we may be a little biased. It’s been our business for over a decade. We are firm believers that technology is meant to work for you. If it isn’t, then what good is it really? If you are still looking for a few good reasons why you should embrace automation, here are 10 we hope will win you over.
Have you been guaranteed a solution for your workflow needs only to find broken promises, experiencing prolonged releases of features that you thought were there and now have the inability to accomplish your organizational goals?
According to the Harvard Business Review, delegating work throughout your organization sounds like it would be a straightforward task, but it’s actually pretty complicated—and we agree. Managers spend so much time manually distributing work assignments based on a multitude of factors, while trying to stay fair and ensure optimal productivity.
Do you know the average number of decisions a person makes a day? 35,000! That’s the number reported by various internet sources. It’s a bit overwhelming, but when you think about the number of decisions you made before you left for work this morning it’s definitely possible. It certainly makes it easier to understand why we are all so tired at the end of the day. Our brains are working overtime!
It’s no secret that digital technologies are shaping the future of the healthcare space. It’s happening now. But what does that mean? It means we should all embrace it and educate ourselves.
You’ve done the research, vetted the vendors, and found the perfect workflow automation solution that will transform your existing business processes into a centralized automated structure of operational efficiency. Why haven’t you signed the contract and started implementation?
The key to a successful transfer of mortgage servicing rights (MSR) is a smooth transition of the portfolio from one servicer to another. It’s a big feat, but not an impossible task. Automated workflow is an important tool to help decrease the risk, for both the customer and the servicer, of costly missed steps in the transfer process.
Automation is not a new concept. Technology has been automating manual processes in our generation for decades. The washing machine replaced the washboard, revolutionizing how we do our laundry. Online banking made it possible to access our accounts and pay bills anytime day or night.
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