MReport June 2020

TheMReport — News and strategies for the evolving mortgage marketplace.

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28 | M R EP O RT FEATURE Brokers Can't Meet Expectations Without the Right Tech O ver the past couple of months, the mortgage industry has been forced to rely on technology in a way it wasn't before. A forced reliance on tech will go a long way toward helping brokers connect with the millennial demographic, as millennials tend to want more frequent communication with their lenders than baby boomers. If used correctly, technology can enhance the human element of the loan origination process. It helps streamline tedious back-and- forth communication between borrower and broker and ensures the loan stays on track. By offering the tech-enhanced human contact today's homebuy- ers consistently want, brokers remain an essential part of the lending process. In addition to of- fering the products and rates that make it possible to serve home- buyers, wholesale lenders can sup- port their brokers by equipping them with technology that lets them address those buyers' most common pain points. What should that tech include? Ideally, all of the following: • Automated income and asset Automated income and asset verification. verification. This is made pos- sible when third parties like banks integrate with a digital mortgage platform so that brokers can pull income and asset information automatically, which saves borrowers the trouble of providing pay stubs and bank statements. • Secure online portal. Secure online portal. This portal should enable both bor- rowers and brokers to complete tasks, access loan status infor- mation, and manage documents (via esign, for example). • Real-time pricing, fees, Real-time pricing, fees, prequal, loan scenarios, etc. prequal, loan scenarios, etc. Brokers should be able to see in real time information about actual loan products and sce- narios available to a borrower. This means that, as a broker updates or changes borrower information, updated pricing and fee information should populate within the platform. • Ability to generate disclosures Ability to generate disclosures and get borrowers committed and get borrowers committed in minutes. in minutes. This is the ultimate goal of many of these features. By digitizing the full origina- tion process, brokers can serve borrowers much faster than was formerly possible and gain commitment during an initial conversation. A platform that offers all of these things effectively enables an end-to-end digital process that lets brokers ensure faster completion of origination and therefore faster progression through the home- buying process. Homebuyers Will Shop Around for Experience B y using a mortgage broker, homebuyers condense the pro- cess of shopping around for the best products and rate: working with a broker to consider prod- ucts from multiple lenders allows for a better, faster experience than applying with multiple lenders individually. In the "age of experience" we're currently living in, this is crucial: 57% of people admit that they've stopped doing business with a company because one of its competitors provided a better experience. It's also music to the ears of most brokers, who tend to be fiercely entrepreneurial, a trait that motivates them to provide excel- lent experiences to their customers. The one hitch: brokers often don't have an extensive tech stacked at their disposal, compared with their loan officer counter- parts. While homebuyers can theoretically comparison shop faster with brokers than with lenders, an analog application may make the broker-enabled process feel more onerous. It's no surprise that the whole- sale lenders that have the best relationships with brokers are the lenders that empower brokers to provide a seamless origination process. By equipping brokers with the best technology available, lenders enable them to be entre- preneurial, grow their business, and provide a top-tier customer experience for borrowers. For wholesale lenders, the broker experience dictates the customer experience. Any tech- enabled benefit that's provided to the broker gets passed directly on to the customer. That's why in- dustry leading wholesalers invest heavily in technology for their brokers—because they recognize how it improves the experience for their customers. Set Brokers Up for Success E nd-to-end digital processes—for both brokers and customers— eliminate the need for most tradi- tional "paperwork," as a true digital mortgage platform lets everything from disclosure delivery to consent signatures happen digitally. Providing this technology will give brokers an edge when selling a specific lender's products. I often say there will be more innovation in mortgage technology in the next three or four years than there was in the last 40. The heightened im- portance of technology has already begun, and it's been accelerated by the global pandemic. Brokers are hungry for new technology, and they'll gravitate toward the lenders that are able to supply it. When loan products are competing side by side and only some of them are accessible via convenient digital channels, choosing the loans powered by the best tech will be a no-brainer. As that happens, lenders that offer the most user-friendly processes will be the ones brokers and homebuy- ers return to again and again. . TIM VON K AENEL is the Chief Product Officer at Cloudvirga, a digital mortgage origination platform. With over 20 years' manage- ment experience, Von Kaenel leads the development of Cloudvirga Enterprise and Consumer POS systems. Previously, he drove the technology strategy for loanDepot's digital platform and led multiple early-stage financial services and software startups to acquisitions and public offerings. End-to-end digital processes—for both brokers and customers— eliminate the need for most traditional "paperwork," as a true digital mortgage platform lets everything from disclosure delivery to consent signatures happen digitally.

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