July 2012

TheMReport — News and strategies for the evolving mortgage marketplace.

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LOCAL EDITION ORIGINATION BMO Harris Bank Expands Loan Origination Operations THE FINANCIAL INSTITUTION IS HIRING NEW LOAN OFFICERS AS BMO WORKS TO ACCOMMODATE AN INCREASING DEMAND FOR MORTGAGES. ILLINOIS // BMO Harris Bank is betting big on the future of mort- gage originations. Citing economic improvements, low interest rates, and solid home inventory levels, the company has announced its intention to hire 100 new loan officers by the end of 2012. In an official statement, BMO Harris Bank said that the "de- mand for mortgages has grown considerably over the past year, prompting the company's decision to add more originators. As gen- eral consumer demand for loans continues to expand, the bank has also observed a "surge" in requests for information on mortgages, demonstrating borrowers' willing- ness to shop around for the best loan options available. In response to the recent " findings, BMO Harris Bank has launched several new marketing and product initiatives. "Consumer reaction to our is at an all-time high," added Chapin. "Home financing is one of the most significant financial decisions a person makes. Our experienced home lenders are focused on providing customers with the guidance and insight they need to choose a mortgage that is right for them. We are now further expanding this team in all of our key markets to support the continued growth we expect." service. The direct lender's smartphone initiative will serve as a "marketing and communica- tions platform" for those seeking details on the go while surveying a potential property. BluFi's service is also set to SharperLending Rolls Out Tech Integration for Lenders, Appraisers benefit housing professionals by simplifying the way consumers interact with real estate marketing materials. According to a compa- ny statement, the mobile module will make it easier for buyers to REDESIGNING ONE OF THE COMPANY'S MOST POPULAR PRODUCTS, SHARPERLENDING ANNOUNCES ENHANCEMENTS TO ITS FIREWALL TOOL. WASHINGTON // SharperLending LLC, a technology provider for the mortgage industry, announced lately that it has redesigned one of its key products, Appraisal Firewall. The new version of the firewall allows for more integration between appraisers and lenders. The product revisions are aimed at minimizing time, cost, and risk for users, according to a press release from SharperLending. "Now lenders can perform more origination and processing work in their loan origination systems (LOS) to reduce costs and maintain efficiency, and LOS companies and other technology partners can capture more of their existing clients' business," stated the press release. Often, lenders are not able to most recent Spring Campaign offering, which provides an interest rate discount to new and existing customers for their home purchase, has been tremendous. Our current campaign offering along with our community outreach initiatives have been well received," said Brad Chapin, the company's executive vice president of personal banking. While bolstering its mortgage access appraisers and appraisal data from their own origination systems, but the new Appraisal Firewall integration allows them to do so. "Appraisal Firewall not only originations business, BMO Harris Bank is working to expand its newly launched Government Loan Operations Center. Currently, the center supports FHA loans, and later in the summer, the company division will add VA loans and USDA rural loans to its offerings. "It's a great time to buy a house as a long-term investment, especially as home affordability BluFi Lending Launches New Mobile Platform OFFERING A NEW TOOL FOR CONSUMERS SEEKING TO PURCHASE A HOME, THE TECHNOLOGY COMPANY UNVEILS ITS LATEST SMARTPHONE INITIATIVE. CALIFORNIA // Giving homebuy- ers a new way to access property information, BluFi Lending has unveiled its Mobile Connect engage the text messaging codes, automated phone numbers, and QR codes frequently included on property signs, advertisements, or brochures. "With the rapid rate of delivers real estate appraisal data back into the LOS, it also provides direct access to a lender's appraiser panel," said Dave Black, president and CEO of SharperLending. Having partnered with smartphone adoption in the U.S. and its use as a multimedia hub and shopping tool, it makes sense to integrate mobile marketing into the home-buying process," said John Lee, BluFi's CEO. "We are providing another high-tech solution to market to current and prospective homebuyers and sellers." technology companies for more than 20 years, the team at SharperLending is keenly aware of the challenges and costs technical integrations often present. Black said the new feature eliminates many of these challenges by presenting a platform where lenders can access appraisals without leaving their own system. "We have made it easy and fast to work with LOS THE M REPORT | 47 ORIGINATION SERVICING ANALYTICS SECONDARY MARKET

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